Grapevine: McLaren Helmets Up for Auction

The diamond-encrusted helmets worn by McLaren drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Juan Pablo Montoya during this year's Monaco Grand Prix went on display in Johannesburg, South Africa this week ahead of being auctioned for charity in October

Grapevine: McLaren Helmets Up for Auction

McLaren sponsor Steinmetz paved race winner Raikkonen's 'Iceman' logo and the Colombian's surname in diamonds on either side of their respective race helmets. A total of 500 stones were used in the process, with the helmets due to be auctioned 'as is', bearing chinks and ding marks inflicted during the race.

Special permission was granted by the sport's governing body, the FIA, for the diamond encrustment with a special adhesive after drivers were earlier this year banned from wearing jewellery during races.

A memorabilia collector has bid £200,000 ($360,000) for the Finn's helmet, with further offers expected before the auction closes. Proceeds from Montoya's helmet are earmarked for Colombian children's charities, whilst diamantaire Steinmetz is hopeful Raikkonen will choose a South African charity.

Last year Steinmetz, then a Jaguar Racing sponsor, mounted a diamond in the nose cone of Christian Klien's mount, but a first lap shunt dislodged the stone. Despite a reward, the diamond was not returned.

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