The grand and glamorous Monaco GP is and always will be a bit more special than the rest of the races on the calendar. Star-studded parties, super-yachts, runway models, and hypercars all under one roof? Sounds like a place where if you need to stand out, you need to do something quite momentous. And McLaren has done just that.
Running third in the constructors championship, the Woking-based manufacturer has given the MCL35M some TLC. Gone is the standard papaya yellow paint scheme and in place is a new livery with Gulf colors.
Of course, this will only be for one race, and what better race to pick than Monaco GP. The drivers, Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo will also be sporting matching overalls and similar retro helmet designs. These will then be auctioned off and proceeds will be donated to the ‘Mind’ charity that supports patients with mental health disorders. Not just that, the entire McLaren team and the garage will be seen in Gulf Oil colors as well.
It isn’t the first time though, that a McLaren has wrapped itself in this bold Gulf livery. The McLaren F1 GTR that nabbed second place at the 1997 24 Hours of Le Mans also flaunted similar colors. McLaren’s decision for this one-off look comes from a barrage of requests by fans after they signed a deal with Gulf Oil last year. It was only fitting that they pay an homage to the F1 GTR and boy does it look good.
Zac Brown, CEO, McLaren Racing was excited with the new color scheme and said, “This will be McLaren’s homage to Gulf’s celebrated racecar design. We’re enormous fans of brave and bold design, and the striking Gulf blue is among the most loved liveries in racing, a celebrated piece of culture which transcends the world of motorsport.”
Special liveries are rather common and we have often seen manufacturers indulge in these one-offs on special occasions. In 2019, Mercedes-AMG was also seen with a special look to celebrate Mercedes’ 125 years in motorsport. Similarly, last year, Ferrari dawned a special look for its 1000th GP in Formula 1.
It is worth noting though, that both those special liveries didn’t really work in the favour of either teams, but we sure hope McLaren changes that.