When it comes to incorporating wheel color into your F1 livery, very few teams have considered it. As near as I can tell, you have to look back to 2015 to find any teams painting their wheels a shade other than the standard black or silver. Back then it was the JPS-stylized Lotus F1 team incorporating gold wheels into its stylistic package. Finally, for the 2021 season, a team is taking a slight risk with its wheels. The Scuderia AlphaTauri team has chosen to run with white wheels!
That’s right, the newly launched Scuderia AlphaTauri AT02 chassis for 2021 features a revised nose cone structure, a color-reversed livery compared to last season, showing much better in blue with white accents than it had in white with blue accents, and crucially the most beautiful wheel shade to ever catch your eye.
As a child of the rad era, I will always stan for white wheels, be they attached to a race car, a road car, or a motorcycle. It’s just the best.
AlphaTauri, of course, had 2020 Italian Grand Prix winner Pierre Gasly and team newcomer Yuki Tsunoda on hand for photographs, testing how they fit in the car, and wear some of the team’s fashion line. Oh yeah, AlphaTauri is Red Bull’s European high fashion line. How could I have forgotten that?
As of this launch, I am now completely obsessed with the AlphaTauri team, and I’m convinced that the team has hired its drivers based wholly on how seriously stylish they look in the clothing line as models and just hope that they will figure out how to wheel the new car around a track.
As pointed out by Twitter pal and R&T contributor Fred Smith, despite having the most high fashion-looking drivers on the grid, the team somehow ended up with this terrible staged pic. I do like the sweater that Yuki is wearing, but it’s definitely not made in husky American sizes, and probably costs 400 euros anyway.
With some revised bodywork, a new Honda-blessed driver, and a totally bitchin’ new livery, here’s hoping the AlphaTauri team manages to show up the Red Bull a-team again in 2021, if only for one totally wild Grand Prix. Gasly for the repeat, or will Yuki make a rookie-season miracle happen?