4. Marc Marquez Motegi Helmet

Japan MotoGP Motorcycle Racing

Winning has a way of smoothing over tensions. And in the case of Marc Marquez, the boy can practically do no wrong these days. This is good, because the special-edition Shoei he wore at the Motegi round of MotoGP last year, Honda’s home race, raised a lot of eyebrows – and not for the right reasons. You see the picture above. You know what I’m talking about. Marquez thought he was paying his respects to his Japanese fans, and his manufacturer’s home country, when in fact the caricature carries with it racist overtones. Maybe that gesture doesn’t carry the same impact in other parts of the world, but I couldn’t believe it when I saw it.

Not one to take things too seriously in life, I give Marc the benefit of the doubt, as he clearly didn’t understand what all the fuss was about. It was a naive and innocent mistake, clearly without any malicious intent. In the end it gave me a chuckle simply because I couldn’t believe he had done it. Shoei reproduced the helmet graphic in limited runs, though wisely decided not to include this specific piece of artwork on the back.