The people who put the ‘F’ in F-Duct will remain title sponsors at McLaren for at least the next three years.
That’s right, mobile phone giants Vodafone have extended their deal with the British team until the end of the 2013 campaign. The company has been title sponsor at McLaren since 2007, following their defection from arch-rivals Ferrari.
Reacting to the news Jenson Button threw an interesting quote out, suggesting that doing corporate work for the team’s backers actually allowed him and Lewis Hamilton to get to know each other quicker:
“The time that Lewis and I have spent together working for our title partner has enabled us to develop a very warm friendship, and some of the initiatives we’ve collaborated on have been both enjoyable and ground-breaking.
Hamilton meanwhile had a slightly stranger take on the announcement, feeling the need to remind us of what he does and what his purpose on this planet is.
“I’m a racing driver. That’s what I am. I often feel I was put on Earth to race. But I understand that Formula 1 is a business as well as a sport, and I’m proud of the work I’ve done with Vodafone over the past four years,” said Lewis.
“The most exciting and fulfilling moments of my life have been achieved with Vodafone McLaren Mercedes – the 2008 Brazilian Grand Prix, and the Drivers’ World Championship that we won at that race.”
Vodafone meanwhile say they have looked to bring their customers closer to Formula 1 through their services, events and experiences, and that they are “committed to new and exciting platforms which will allow customers to get even closer to the action.”
Above all, this news confirms that McLaren have the financial backing to remain at the top of the F1 tree for at least the next three years. With a company the size of Vodafone paying the bills and Mercedes continuing to supply their engines the British squad are well positioned to remain consistent title challengers.