Rosberg helmet now will have stars

ESPN logo
Thursday, July 17, 2014

HOCKENHEIM, Germany -- Formula 1 drivers' championship leader Nico Rosberg has had to ditch plans to put an image of the World Cup trophy on his helmet for the upcoming German Grand Prix following a complaint from FIFA.

The German driver wanted to celebrate his country's World Cup win with a specially designed helmet that also featured the German colors.

FIFA reportedly complained that featuring the trophy on the helmet would breach its "intellectual property'' rights.

"We appreciate Nico Rosberg's desire to congratulate the German team and have therefore been in discussions with the Rosberg team, who have now found a solution whereby he will still be able to show his support for Germany without using FIFA's intellectual property in a commercial context,'' a FIFA spokesperson told The Associated Press on Thursday

"FIFA brands cannot be allowed to be shown on a commercially branded helmet.''

Rosberg will race instead with a modified helmet featuring four golden stars, one for each of Germany's World Cup wins.

"It's amazing that even a trophy has a trademark,'' Rosberg said on Thursday. "I was surprised but of course I understand. It's a pity because the helmet looked really cool with the trophy on top. It's been replaced by a big star. No one can take that away. The star belongs to us!''

The driver tweeted out his regrets over FIFA's decision, with a picture of the helmet he will wear now instead.

a shame,i would have loved to carry the trophy as a tribute to the guys.but of course I respect the legal situation

- Nico Rosberg (@nico_rosberg) July 17, 2014Earlier this week, he tweeted out a photo that showed the helmet that he had hoped to wear.

this will be my Hockenheim World Cup special edition helmet with the FIFA trophy. How do you like it??? @DFB_Team

- Nico Rosberg (@nico_rosberg) July 15, 2014Rosberg's team, Mercedes, was also showing its appreciation for Germany's football triumph at its home grand prix.

"The best'' was written in large letters on the side of the team's motorhome, and "We congratulate our national team on winning the title.''

Rosberg leads the championship by four points over Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.