The Auction With F1 Memorabilia From Anyone Who Is Anyone
So often, Formula 1-related memorabilia comes with an attendant sense that it’s the sort of thing you’ve seen before. Yet the range going up for auction at the forthcoming Artcurial Rétromobile sale in Paris on February 10 could not be further from being run of the mill. First there is the sheer scale of what is going under the hammer. There’s actually-used memorabilia from virtually anyone who is anyone from F1’s past quarter century. Contemporary heroes like Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso, to legends of the previous generation like Michael Schumacher, Alain Prost, and Mika Häkkinen. In the case of almost every one of them their overalls and helmets are up for grabs, and in some cases there are steering wheels, even car parts, and a few other things besides. Many are signed by the driver.
To use the example of Lewis Hamilton to illustrate, you can buy one of his crash helmets used in the 2012, ‘14, ’15 or ’16 seasons–each of them are expected to go for between €30,000 and €50,000. Alternatively you can buy a set of his McLaren overalls from 2008 (€8,000 to €12,000) or one of two Mercedes sets worn in 2014 (€10,000 to €15,000). There’s also his Mercedes steering wheel from ‘14, expected to fetch €10,000 to €20,000. Or if you can’t stretch that far there’s a pair of his boots, likely to go for €1,500 and €2,000, a pair of his gloves at €400-800 or even his knee pads at €200-300… And don’t worry if your personal F1 hero is one whose light did not shine quite as brightly as those mentioned, as memorabilia from plenty further down the order are there too, such as from Adrian Sutil, Luca Badoer and Max Chilton.
This memorabilia being auctioned has sheer quality as well as quantity, including some extremely sought after items. Most eye-catching perhaps is a set of the late great Ayrton Senna’s overalls from his debut 1984 F1 season. In that campaign driving for Toleman Senna emphatically left his calling card, particularly with second place in Monaco’s teeming rain. The overalls are expected to go for between €15,000 and €25,000. You also can bid for a signed helmet of the late Jules Bianchi wore racing in the 2013 season for Marussia as well as testing for Ferrari at Silverstone the following year. The Ferrari protégée was destined for great things before his career was cut short by a fatal accident at the 2014 Japanese Grand Prix. The helmet is expected to bring in between €10,000 and €20,000.
There are a few things from leftfield too. First there’s a sweet-sounding V12 engine unit from the 1995 Ferrari, the last V12 engine used in F1. That’s expected to bring in €70,000 to €100,000. While really from leftfield is a full-scale 2017 Renault F1 car…made of 313,000 pieces of Lego. That is anticipated to be sold for €30,000 to €50,000 and proceeds go to UNICEF.
Images courtesy of Artcurial