Dale Wood has shown off a quirky helmet design, inspired by The Cat in the Hat, that he’ll sport in the Supercheap Auto Bathurst 1000.
This weekend Wood has joined Rick Kelly in the #15 Castrol Racing Ford Mustang, marking the second year in a row the pair has raced together.
This year marks the 13th start for the 37-year-old Wood in the Bathurst 1000, which he and his family decided to celebrate with a bold helmet design.
“One night we were watching The Cat in the Hat,” Wood told Speedcafe.com.
“My boys, they’re five and seven, we watch the same movie nearly every night until you want to smack your head against the wall.
“Then at some point we all sort of said, ‘that’d be a good idea, we should do a helmet like that’.
“It was just about picking something that’s close to the heart and not like your normal style of helmet I guess,” he added.
“At home, me and my boys, we love The Cat in the Hat and love all the Dr. Seuss stuff.
“I think a lot of people from our generation can look back and relate to something there. So I thought let’s just do something really funky with the Dr. Seuss theme.
“It’s something really different with something really stupid on the side saying, ‘I am Dale’ and on the other side, ‘Dale I am’; A bit like Sam-I-am, Green Eggs and Ham.
“I’ve kind of taken the piss out of myself, which I don’t mind doing.”
The helmet features Dr. Seuss character The Cat in the Hat, Sam-I-Am, Thing One and Thing Two, and small details in the cartoon’s style paying tribute to family and friends.
“There’s a lot of little details in there, little notes, little things based on the book,” Wood explained.
“Things like, ‘I love Jess’, my wife, and it’s got ‘Jacko and Sammy were here’ and a few other people that mean a lot to me.
“So I’ve put some notes in there. The whole helmet tells a story. There’s a middle finger on the back, like my Santa Cruz one had.
“There’s always a few people that you put behind you to throw the bird at. It’s fun. Dr. Seuss is always fun.”
Wood said the artwork also has a special connection with Antman Helmet Design, who put the artwork together.
“The beauty of it was, when I rang him about it, it hit a point with him,” said Wood.
“When he was younger he loved Dr. Seuss. He’s a bit of a wacky artist and I know that if they can buy in on something, Ant can put his own touches in on it and then it really comes alive.”
Wood, who is based out of Melbourne, said one upside to the coronavirus pandemic was the amount of time spent with his family.
“Being a Melburnian, it’s been a pretty challenging time down there,” he said.
“But there’s silver linings to everything. The amount of time we’ve spent forced with our family has been unbelievable.
“You never turn around and say you spend too much time with your family. It’s been amazing.
“It’s nice to get away, take the mask off, and walk freely around Bathurst is pretty cool.”
Wood and Kelly will start the Great Race from 19th.