Vettel removed controversial ‘climate crime’ helmet for Canadian Grand Prix

2022 Canadian Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel did not wear his helmet drawing attention to “Canada’s climate crime” during yesterday’s Canadian Grand Prix.

However his Aston Martin team insisted they did not require him to stop wearing the helmet, which he sported on Friday and Saturday at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

Vettel’s helmet and accompanying T-shirt bearing the slogans “Stop mining tar sands” and “Canada’s climate crime” made him a focus of attention after a local political accused him of “hypocrisy”. Aston Martin team principal Mike Krack denied the team had told him to stop wearing the design.

“No, no,” he said when asked. “I mean, he wanted to create awareness with the T-shirt and the helmet. And then at one point, he decided the awareness is created, let’s say, and that was it, and took it off. And he cannot wear the same T-shirt every day!”

Vettel reverted to the ‘No War’ helmet design which he has worn since the start of the season in response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. This also provoked controversy as it originally included the flag of a disputed region.

Krack said Vettel ordinarily briefs the team on his choices of alternative helmet design, which have become increasingly political in recent years.

“He informs us normally what he’s doing and then we agree how to do it,” said Krack. “Normally, you have seen in past weeks, that it was mainly a Friday thing or Friday, Saturday and then also here. But he’s free to decide. We talk about it.”

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The helmet Vettel wore during practice and qualifying at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve

2022 Canadian Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...
Will Wood
Will has been a RaceFans contributor since 2012 during which time he has covered F1 test sessions, launch events and interviewed drivers. He mainly...

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26 comments on “Vettel removed controversial ‘climate crime’ helmet for Canadian Grand Prix”

  1. Sponsored by Aramco

    1. Since when do drivers get a choice in team sponsors?

      1. Drivers can make choices who they drive for, none of them are poor and driving for a living.

    2. Chris Horton
      20th June 2022, 9:03

      Sponsor is nothing to do with him. Try a less lazy argument.

      1. Middle East bad, everyone else has never done anything wrong. Try a less lazy argument.

    3. Even environmental friendly Canada had their GP sponsored by Aramco.

      1. Fred Fedurch
        20th June 2022, 22:20

        Environmental friendly Canada? Who fed you that line. Our woke, virtue signaling Prime Minister will take his A310 Airbus to go surfing for the day in Vancouver (8,000km round trip). Vacationing in Florida, flew back to Ottawa for a photo-op on a Monday (2,500km), back to Florida on Tuesday (2,500km), and flew back to Ottawa when his vacation was over on the Thursday (2,500km). He’s big on pushing through carbon taxes (that go into general coffers) to appear to be an environmentalist to the G7/G20, but he’s far from it.

    4. In this one regard Saudi is marginally the lesser of two evils – Canada’s tar sands are as ecologically filthy as they sound.

    5. Considering Aramco is both a F1 Global Partner and Tar/Oil sands investors, it doesn’t make sense. His “hypocrisy” actually reflects on us who support F1 therefore we support the Saudi giant

  2. Something is amiss.

    I’m sure there’s some juicy backstory on why he didn’t wear the helmet on Sunday. I’m guessing Aramco (or someone in their interest) may have had a word or two about it; but I’m just guessing.

    1. The minister of energy, Sonya Savage, called him a hypocrite.

  3. Considering that the Canadian tar sands companies compete against Aramco, I doubt the latter had anything to do with Vettel’s helmet choice on Sunday.

    Aramco would like nothing more than North American tar sands and fracking operations ending.

    1. Aramco has a stake in 2 of largest Canadian tar sand companies. Vettel should probably do his homework first before firing away

      1. Or perhaps he was standing up against them?

      2. To be fair, I’m reading about this now when I would have no idea Vettel had this on his helmet. Maybe Vettel creating controversy and being “banned” from wearing it is exactly what he is going for.

  4. playstation361
    20th June 2022, 9:22

    Bad to see boo from the crowd.

  5. How come, why he would do this often? .

  6. I like to see Vettel’s activism, but having an Aramco sticker right next to an oil pipeline / “climate crime” is obviously going to backfire. Many of us are forced to work in industries where we don’t agree with many issues, but it doesn’t mean you stop trying to make the world better. You just be more careful about it.

  7. Vettel is more likely to have an impact on the climate by no longer racing than plastering his helmet with woke messages.

    1. Not really. Also this has nothing to do with wokeness.

  8. I like you Seb, but mind your own business. Until Canada’s oil reserves impact Germany (which has its own serious problems – I’m sure it would like to receive some of its black gold right about now) just keep quiet. And that goes for everyone meddling in foreign countries’ business. Take care of your own and maybe there will be less strife on the third rock from the Sun.

    1. Germany is just reopening coal power plants…

  9. So he removed “bring famine and die from cold” helmet. Good on him. Now i doubt he changed his mind.

    Do you know Western countries that have threatned developing countries that they will block any finance to any fossil fuels projects just asked Botswana to double coal production and are pushing for much more Argelia gas extraction and increasing Saudi prodution…
    Maybe Austrian chancellor had a call with millionaire citizen Sebastian Vettel that while he don’t suffer much from doubling. tripling or quadruple of energy prices other citizens are not so well off…

  10. I understand how a lot of people feel conflicted about Seb racing cars that burn petrochemicals while being sponsored (even if indirectly) by Saudi Aramco. Sure there is a bit of apparent hypocrisy there. But do all climate activists need to live in caves, walk everywhere they go, and clothe themselves in animal pelts?

    I think it’s even more important for people who are involved in practices that are heavy on fossil fuels to demand change more than those who are not. If they don’t demand change it’s going to get even worse not better.

    It might make you uncomfortable but it is the gigantic smelly elephant in the room and ignoring it does no one favors other than the oil cartels. It shouldn’t be radical to expect land owners to be good stewards of the land first off. We’ve all seen photos of the tar sands in Canada and it’s hard to believe anyone would believe that is a good idea or appropriate use of the land (if you haven’t you’re probably living in a cave and already doing your part – forget it!). Not destroying the environment should be a constraint on all business. I read these comments and see a lot of whining about not wanting to be reminded of global climate change. Get used to it. it’s going to get a lot worse, especially if we keep delaying action.

    1. What you think are the mines for resources that all your devices, your home, your car, your clothes are made of?
      Are they made from air?
      Are so many of you educated so pious or live in a sort of disneyfied human existence that don’t know that industry is taking resources from nature and from human culture to build something that we value and without you can’t have a life?

      “Not destroying the environment should be a constraint on all business.”
      But not NGO’s? Do you want to end human life on earth? You can start implementing that.
      Sri Lanka government forbid industrial fertilizers, only natural ones would be accepted . Result they even been on verge of famine and going bankrupt because they have now to import a lot of food.
      It is extraordinary how listening to reputable news, years and years of “public education” – not evil fake news by any means – leds so many people to not understand what sustains human life on earth.

      1. It’s possible to extract natural resources without destroying the environment. If the only way to make a profit is to skip environmental protection as part of a project, it should not be done. The extraction of natural resources is not really the problem. The problem is how that is done and that it is mostly unregulated by governments. Do we really want greedy businesses to decide environmental policy? I think the people who are affected by these decisions should also have a say.

        It’s extraordinary that people are okay with destroying the world that provides for and sustains life just so they can pay less money for the very fuels that are making the world less inhabitable. We are trading the well-being of future generations for greed and convenience. I cannot support that and I find it hard to believe others are okay with this.

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