Niki Lauda is on the lookout for a new sponsor for his famous red cap.

Niki Lauda is on the lookout for a new sponsor for his famous red cap.

Ever since a near-fatal shunt in 1976 left him with head and facial scars, the iconic Austrian racer, businessman and TV commentator has sold the commercial rights to the front of his ever-present baseball cap.

For more than two decades, 'Parmalat' paid for the privilege, and in 2002 the German heating company 'Viessmann' took over the deal.

In 2007, the name and logo of the Swiss machinery maker 'Oerlikon' began adorning 60-year-old Lauda's head, with speculation suggesting an annual six-figure sum.

The daily Osterreich newspaper is now reporting that the Oerlikon deal is set to lapse at the end of the year due to cost cutting.

"The contract with Oerlikon is running out -- that's right," Lauda confirmed to the APA news agency.

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