Cryptocurrency and blockchain companies continue to crop up in the world of Formula 1, with a non-fetchable token (NFT) putting its stamp on Red Bull Racing cars to close out the 2022 calendar.
Red Bull Racing dominated the F1 season, topping the constructors’ standings, while Max Verstappen finished the drivers’ standings for the second consecutive season. As the curtain closes on the 2022 race schedule in Abu Dhabi on November 20, the team’s cars will display NFT on their livery in what is being called a first in F1.
Red Bull Racing inked a deal with cryptocurrency exchange Bybit as the team’s main partner in February 2022, one of the few cryptocurrency companies to sponsor Formula 1 teams. The exchange’s logo will appear alongside Lei the Lightning Azuki, artwork and character from Anime-inspired Azuki collection NFT.
The original Lei Azuki NFT is one of 10,000 NFTs from the collection. #8494 is currently listed on OpenSea and is valued at approximately 9 Wrapped Ether (wETH), or $11,100 at the time of writing.
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Red Bull Racing’s Lei the Lightning Azuki will be a limited edition #8494 slated to be minted on the Tezos blockchain and available through Bybit’s NFT marketplace.
Red Bulls Racing Team Principal Christian Horner highlighted the ongoing exploration of Web3 use cases by partnering in the world of sport
“In many ways, it has been an eye-opener to the vast opportunities that Web3 has to offer. This unique project is the perfect blend of creativity, innovation and passion that aligns with our on-track ethos.”
Formula 1 sport has been a huge proponent of the cryptocurrency space. Crypto.com signed a major sponsorship deal in June 2021 as an official cryptocurrency and NFT partner. Fan token platform Chiliz has partnered with a few F1 teams over the past two years.
McLaren has become the first team to do a “livery takeover” with major sponsor OKX in 2022. Cointelegraph exclusively interviewed Australian driver Daniel Ricciardo about the partnership at Token2049 in Singapore in October 2022.
Formula 1 also filed a number of trademark applications in October 2022 that indicate the organization is looking to take full control of intellectual property in the broader cryptocurrency space.