German Grand Prix 2014: Nico Rosberg's tribute helmet to Germany's World Cup win gets red card

Fifa ban Mercedes driver from using image of trophy because it infringes their intellectual property rights

It seemed like a good idea at the time, a great opportunity really. After all, it had been quite a week for Nico Rosberg. First he got married to his long-time girlfriend Vivian Sibold last Friday. Then he signed a contract extension with Mercedes and his beloved Germany won the World Cup. As he said on Twitter ahead of this weekend's German Grand Prix: "Just need to win my home GP now."

But wait. If there was ever an organisation ready to clamp down on anyone else's fun, it is football's world governing body, Fifa. To mark the occasion at Hockenheim, drivers' championship leader Rosberg and his Mercedes team designed a special helmet emblazoned with the colours of the German flag, an image of the trophy and four stars for each of his country's World Cup wins. But Fifa stepped in to ban him from using an image of the cup because it infringed their intellectual property rights.

So it's a time for hard hats and hard hearts. Rosberg tweeted a picture of the new helmet on Tuesday, asking his 712,000 followers after Germany's 1-0 triumph over Argentina on Sunday: "This will be my Hockenheim World Cup special edition helmet with the Fifa trophy. How do you like it?" Fifa were soon in touch with Rosberg's manager Georg Nolte to insist that the cup image be removed.

Nico Rosberg's failed plan to feature the World Cup on his helmet at Hockenheim Nico Rosberg's failed plan to feature the World Cup on his helmet at Hockenheim
A spokesperson said: "We appreciate Nico Rosberg's desire to congratulate the German team and have therefore been in discussions with the Rosberg team to attempt to find a solution, whereby he is still able to show his support for Germany without using Fifa intellectual property in a commercial context."

The revised helmet, which Rosberg displayed on Twitter today, now figures one of the four stars more prominently in place of the trophy. Rosberg tweeted: "A shame, I would have loved to carry the trophy as a tribute to the guys. But of course I respect the legal situation." Was there a certain dryness in his tone, or is it just the German way?

Nico Rosberg's helmet Nico Rosberg's helmet (Getty Images)
Mercedes are unbowed and will adorn their motorhome in the paddock with the words "Das Beste" (the best) in giant letters, followed by "We congratulate our national team on winning the title". They will also feature the four stars, but replacing one of them with the three-pointed Mercedes emblem.

The company sponsor the German Football Association, so Fifa should be wary of picking a fight with them.

voicesGood for Lana Del Rey for helping kill that myth, writes Grace Dent
The University of California study monitored the reaction of 36 dogs
sciencePets' range of emotions revealed
Life and Style
fashion Designs are part of feminist art project by a British student
Arts and Entertainment
The nomination of 'The Wake' by Paul Kingsnorth has caused a stir
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Snoop Dogg pictured at The Hollywood Reporter Nominees' Night in February, 2013
people... says Snoop Dogg
Life and Style
food + drinkZebra meat is exotic and lean - but does it taste good?
Arts and Entertainment
Residents of Derby Road in Southampton oppose filming of Channel 4 documentary Immigration Street in their community
voicesSiobhan Norton on why she eventually changed her mind
Arts and Entertainment
The Tour de France peloton rides over a bridge on the Grinton Moor, Yorkshire, earlier this month
Scottish singer Susan Boyle will perform at the Commonwealth Games opening ceremony in Glasgow
commonwealth games
Arts and Entertainment
Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson stars in Hercules
filmReview: The Rock is a muscular Davy Crockett in this preposterous film, says Geoffrey Macnab
Life and Style
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre

Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy'

A land of the outright bizarre
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?

‘Weird Al’ Yankovic's latest video is an ode to good grammar. But what do The Independent’s experts think he’s missed out?
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?

The worst kept secret in cinema

A cult movie event aims to immerse audiences of 80,000 in ‘Back to the Future’. But has it lost its magic?
Facebook: The new hatched, matched and dispatched

The new hatched, matched and dispatched

Family events used to be marked in the personal columns. But now Facebook has usurped the ‘Births, Deaths and Marriages’ announcements
Why do we have blood types?

Are you my type?

All of us have one but probably never wondered why. Yet even now, a century after blood types were discovered, it’s a matter of debate what they’re for
Honesty box hotels: You decide how much you pay

Honesty box hotels

Five hotels in Paris now allow guests to pay only what they think their stay was worth. It seems fraught with financial risk, but the honesty policy has its benefit
Commonwealth Games 2014: Why weight of pressure rests easy on Michael Jamieson’s shoulders

Michael Jamieson: Why weight of pressure rests easy on his shoulders

The Scottish swimmer is ready for ‘the biggest race of my life’ at the Commonwealth Games
Some are reformed drug addicts. Some are single mums. All are on benefits. But now these so-called 'scroungers’ are fighting back

The 'scroungers’ fight back

The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
Amazing video shows Nasa 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action

Fireballs in space

Amazing video shows Nasa's 'flame extinguishment experiment' in action
A Bible for billionaires

A Bible for billionaires

Find out why America's richest men are reading John Brookes
Paranoid parenting is on the rise - and our children are suffering because of it

Paranoid parenting is on the rise

And our children are suffering because of it
For sale: Island where the Magna Carta was sealed

Magna Carta Island goes on sale

Yours for a cool £4m
Phone hacking scandal special report: The slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

The hacker's tale: the slide into crime at the 'News of the World'

Glenn Mulcaire was jailed for six months for intercepting phone messages. James Hanning tells his story in a new book. This is an extract
We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

We flinch, but there are degrees of paedophilia

Child abusers are not all the same, yet the idea of treating them differently in relation to the severity of their crimes has somehow become controversial
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering

For instance, did Isis kill the Israeli teenagers to trigger a war, asks Patrick Cockburn