Tue Mar 18 2014 14:44:24 GMT+0000 (Coordinated Universal Time)

"Among the raft of changes to Formula One in 2014, one of the most popular with drivers and fans alike concerns identity. Drivers have picked their own personal racing numbers - to keep for their whole careers as shown on this chart.

Gilles Villeneuve's 27, Dale Earnhardt's 3, Valentino Rossi's 46, or even the 53 adorning Disney's racing VW Beetle, "Herbie." Race numbers can become part of a driver or team's identity, as is already customary in series like NASCAR and MotoGP. For the new season, Formula One is seeking this personal touch instead of its former, rigid numbering system based on the previous year's results.

For the first time, drivers have been asked to choose a permanent, personalized competition number from 2 to 99, with the number 1 reserved as usual for the defending world champion. Despite the flurry of 22 near-simultaneous applications when the system was introduced from scratch over the off-season, most drivers were able to secure their first choice."

Read more behind the number choices: