Lewis Hamilton says he opted to bring back his traditional yellow Formula 1 helmet design so fans could easily tell the two Mercedes cars apart on-track this year.

Hamilton first raced in F1 using a bright yellow helmet design that dated back to his karting days, but switched to a more white-based design around 2018. For the past two seasons, he has raced with a purple and black helmet.

But Hamilton revealed ahead of the new F1 season that he would be returning to a yellow helmet this year, saying it was his “history” and “to show love to my beginnings”.

Hamilton’s fluorescent yellow design has also carried over to some design elements on the Mercedes W13 car. His number 44 on the nose and either side of the engine cover is in the same colour, while the wheel fairings also have a bright yellow trim.

Hamilton explained that he wanted to bring back his old yellow helmet design to try and help fans tell the two Mercedes cars apart on-track better.

"What I’ve noticed and [I am] sensitive to [is] those that are watching the grands prix can’t tell the difference between the two cars, and that was an issue I brought up to the team,” Hamilton said.

“I spent hours at home after the launch with my iPad, taking a picture and you’re editing [it on] some sort of editor, and sending these pictures of what the car livery would look better as to Toto [Wolff] and to Ola [Kallenius].

“I did some research, I looked for what the most popping colour would be, and came back to yellow. So we put that on the car.

“Then I realised you still can't see the helmets with these halos, so I decided to bring some real light to the helmet.”

Lewis Hamilton at Bahrain GP 2022

Hamilton’s car is also fitted with the yellow T-cam this year, with the black one being used by Mercedes team-mate George Russell. Russell’s car has red trim around the wheel fairings, and a blue number design on the nose and engine cover.

Speaking over the Bahrain weekend, Hamilton also expanded on his plan to incorporate his mother’s surname, Larbalestier, into his name in the near future.

Hamilton clarified that he would be making Larbalestier an additional middle name, and that it was meant to be a surprise for his mother before revealing the plan at Expo 2020 in Dubai ahead of the Bahrain race.

“I was naturally sad when my grandad from my mum’s side passed, and just knowing that, I just felt for quite some time that I wanted to add my mum and my granddad’s name into my name,” Hamilton said.

“I already have my granddad from my dad’s side in my middle name, which is Davidson. And obviously Hamilton. But I thought, it was supposed to be a surprise. It ended up being a surprise, but I was going to tell my mum first before people saw it. It just slipped out!

“I’ve already applied for it, and as I said, it won’t be a surname. It will be an addition to my middle name.”

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