Truck driver wins ‘world’s best mullet’ at festival devoted to the 80s haircut

A truck driver who has been sporting his mullet for two decades has been honoured for his 1980s hairstyle at a European festival. Nicolas Vanderkelen was named best mullet at the 2021 Mullet Cup in the French village of Cheniers on Saturday, September 4. Around 500 people turned out to watch Mr Vanderkelen take the crown after he had to face stiff competition as 100 people competed for the top prize.

The Belgian truck driver was hailed winner after an ‘election of applause’ at the festival. He took the prize from reigning champion and Frenchman Gauthier Istin, who reportedly walked 600km to attend the popular event as a spectator.

Mr Vanderkelen was handed the trophy by the previous winner Gauthier Istin

Mr Vanderkelen said his mullet isn’t just a hairstyle but insisted it is ‘a way of life’, reports The Mirror. According to AFP Julian, a festival-goer, said: “We don’t care about other people’s looks, about fashion.

“There is no typical look to have. Whether it’s skin colour, gender, clothing, haircut, we want everyone to be perceived the same way. “And this is kind of the pinnacle, we all agree.

It’s a mule’s paradise.”

Truck driver wins 'world's best mullet' at festival devoted to the 80s haircutThe iconic hairstyle has become popular again during lockdown after hairdressers were forced to close their doors

In 2020, Brit Rob Ayton won the world’s best mullet at the annual Mulletfest, held in Kurri Kurri, New South Wales. He originally got his first mullet cut ‘for a joke’ while on holiday in Australia three years before, but ended up keeping the hairstyle after it grew on him. “It’s a way of life, of being able to laugh at yourself,” another festival-goer said.

Truck driver wins 'world's best mullet' at festival devoted to the 80s haircutThose brave enough were given the opportunity to get a mullet at the festival

The mullet is a hairstyle where the hair at the front and the sides is cut short but the hair in the back is left longer.

While it was paraded by some celebrities in the 1960s it became more widespread two decades later, becoming an iconic hairstyle in the 80s. In recent years, the hairstyle has regained popularity, with 2020 being dubbed the ‘year of the mullet’ by fashion magazine i-D, after hairdressers were forced to close their doors due to coronavirus.

Truck driver wins 'world's best mullet' at festival devoted to the 80s haircutHundreds of people watched competitors in the 2021 Mullet Cup on the weekend

The mullet also hit the headlines in May, when actor Seth Rogen showed off his version of the infamous ‘do for a role in the new Hulu series ‘Pam & Tommy’. The series tells the story of Pamela Anderson’s marriage to musician Tommy Lee after their sex tape was leaked.

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