Tattoos and F1

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Of all the things that I didn’t see coming down the pike from the future, I think that tattoos are at the top of the list. Much higher on the list than, say, hamburger meat manufactured in a lab – OK, we all knew that was coming – or truck farmers making a comeback, or smart phones. As an aside, to very loosely paraphrase Che Guevara, Computers are not revolutionary, they are bourgeois. Smart phones are revolutionary! End aside.

I so didn’t see tattoos coming, that they just sort of snuck up on me. I don’t watch much football on TV,  so that didn’t tip me off.  Sure, I read about Anglia Jolie and Billy Bob Thornton getting matching tattoos, still that seemed like an hyper-hip exception. By the time I saw the adorable Ana Pascal in Stranger Than Fiction, 


with her tattoo being a big part of her charm – even though she was played by a tattooless Maggie Gyllenhaal – I knew something was up. Nevertheless, Ana was a nonconformist. What I didn’t expect was for Formula 1 drivers to sport tattoos.

They are, after all, ambassadors for the multi-billion dollar companies, such as Mercedes-Benz, that are often pretty conservative.


When they are working, they even disappear into the car itself.


The two best driver in Formula 1 right now are probably Fernando Alonso from Spain and Lewis Hamilton from England. Alonso drives for Ferrari which is famous for putting the car before the driver – I reminded everyone, including the drivers, that Ferrari comes before everything, the priority is the team. Rather like a family father pointing out the need to respect some family rules. Ferrari president Luca Di Montezemolo explained, after he tweaked the ear of Alonso who had the audacity to complain about his car – so I was surprised to see that he has a tattoo of a samurai on his back. Not so much that it is a samurai, but that it is there at all.


But, when I saw Mercedes’ Hamilton’s tattoo, I knew it was a new world.



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