At the highest level of motorsport, drivers need top-of-the-line safety equipment. Perhaps the most important piece of this puzzle is the pilot’s helmet.
The headsets are packed with some truly amazing technology. But how much does a Formula 1 driver’s helmet really cost?
Formula 1 level safety helmets cost around USD4,400 each. However, during a full season, a single driver will need 15 helmets, which amounts to a total of USD60,000.
The standard for these helmets is incredibly high, and they are designed to protect the rider against many different scenarios in the world of motorsport.
The Importance of Helmets in F1
With Formula 1 cars being arguably the fastest racing series in the world, safety is absolutely crucial. As we have seen in the past, head injuries can be very serious, even at Formula 1 level with proper safety equipment.
In 2009, Felipe Massa was hit just above his visor by a one-kilo spring that detached from the car in front of him.
The spring met the Ferrari driver, who was traveling at 260 km/h. The result is essentially the equivalent of a shot being fired directly into the helmet.
Massa was unconscious, his foot stuck on the accelerator pedal before his car even touched the barriers at the end of the straight.
The result was an extremely violent injury, a concussion and Massa missed the remainder of the 2009 Formula 1 season.
Accidents of this type, rare as they are, cannot be overlooked. Since that incident, the FIA has required all Formula 1 helmets to feature a carbon fiber stripe that crosses the top of the driver’s visor.
The Cost of an F1 Helmet
Formula 1 helmets are designed to the highest safety standards. This of course makes the real cost of the helmet skyrocket. A single Formula 1-level helmet from Arai costs around USD4,400.
During a season, drivers will have to use several helmets, at least 15. Indeed, helmets also wear out and it is important to maintain maximum safety. Formula 1 drivers participate in race weekends with at least 3 different helmets.