Jean Todt has thrown his weight behind moves to bring in permanent race numbers in F1, although he has said the 'number one' should always belong on the car of the world champion.

"I am supportive of that proposal," Todt told French newspaper, L'Equipe after he was re-elected last week as the president of the FIA, the governing body of world motorsport. "I think it would be nice if drivers kept the same number, with the exception of the world champion, who [should] always display the number one."

Currently numbers in F1 are assigned according to where teams finish in the Constructors' Championship, with the exception of the number one, that always goes to the reigning world champion. However in the past that wasn't always the case, with red 5, famously associated with Nigel Mansell, while the #27 is always linked to the legendary Gilles Villeneuve - although neither was specifically allocated.

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Meanhwhile, Todt also added there is a need to make race numbers more visible in F1.

"When I come to see or watch a grand prix, I cannot see the name or number of the driver. I know they need space on the cars for sponsors. But I think there are solutions," he continued. "For example, we could put bigger numbers on the helmets."

In MotoGP most riders stick with the same number, as the premier bike championship uses a different process to F1 and it means on the whole riders can run with whatever number they want, as long as it is not already taken and as long as it hasn't been 'retired'. Hence Valentino Rossi has made the #46 his own, and Nicky Hayden and Jorge Lorenzo have done the same with #69 and #99.