I’m pretty sure it is just superstition. Not just the drivers, but you can be guaranteed that each team has at least one deeply superstitious employee who would feel uncomfortable about working on the #13 car. As far as I know, nobody’s ever complained about the absence of a #13, so it just keeps everyone happy.
However, I believe Antonio Felix Da Costa has requested the #13. I’ll be quite surprised if the FIA disallow it since there are many other forms of motorsport in which a car competes with the number 13.
@jackysteeg I don’t think the FIA would disallow AFDC using the #13, because if memory serves my correct @keithcollantine stated clearly in the article that a number had to picked between 2 and 99, that also includes the number 13.
If anything, sportsmen are the most superstitious kind of humanbeings you’ll ever come across.
I disagree. They’ll usually not ‘supserstitious’ outside competition, so I think the reason why they repeat a certain kind behaviour is to have a routine and avoid unnecessary noise if you will. Once their rhythm gets interrupted they start to feel uncomfortable/lose their concentration.
Say drivers always want their helmet – they don’t believe that this particular helmet brings them luck, but having a different helmet is another new element which can sway your concentration. You keep thinking to yourself ‘I have a new helmet’, opposed to it being a non-issue. Many tennis players avoid touching the lines while going on and off the court, just because it is another routine that permits them to keep their concentration levels up. I, for example, always have to take 3-4 steps backwards before coming back forwards to return. You do/avoid things to catch a rhythm and to focus.
Also, if I were to choose my number it’d be 7, 9, 13 :)
As a fan of rugby (union) the number 13 superstition in F1 has always been a nonsense for me. There are a number of rugby players who have made the 13 shirt famous for club and country and to my knowledge not one of them has said they felt wearing the number had or could have brought them bad luck.
I always thought the aversion to #13 was always more a force of habit than any genuine belief in it’s superstition.
That said, there are a few drivers who avoid it. Esteban Tuero, who did a season for Minardi in the late 1990s before going touring car racing in Argentina, refuses to use it or the #17 for superstitious reasons.