McLaren to lose Vodafone title sponsorship

2013 F1 season

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Shanghai, 2007McLaren have confirmed their title sponsorship arrangement with Vodafone will conclude at the end of this year.

The team said Vodafone “has decided to focus on business priorities away from Formula One sponsorship”.

McLaren added it would not confirm the identity of its new title sponsor but “will make an exciting announcement on 2nd December 2013, following the last Grand Prix of the season”.

“We’re immensely proud that, having been set a number of ambitious challenges by Vodafone back in 2007, together we’ve met or exceeded each and every one,” said team principal Martin Whitmarsh.

“Our focus is on continuing to drive results for all our partners throughout the 2013 season and we look forward to making a major title partnership announcement towards the end of the year.”

Vodafone has been McLaren’s title sponsor since 2007 (pictured). Prior to that it was a sponsor of Ferrari.

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121 comments on McLaren to lose Vodafone title sponsorship

  1. MagillaGorilla (@magillagorilla) said on 14th March 2013, 8:19

    Good bye Silver, we will miss you…I guess we should have seen this coming once Vodafone-holden team switched over to RB-Holden…

    I must go man cry this one out.

    • Bullfrog (@bullfrog) said on 14th March 2013, 9:45

      It lives on on the Delta Wing, in action at Sebring this weekend…now that thing looks cool.

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 14th March 2013, 10:58

      The decision to stop sponsoring Triple Eight Race Engineering – the V8 Supercar team – was made by Vodafone Australia. It had nothing to do with the decision to stop sponsoring McLaren, which was made by an entirely different branch of the company.

      • petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 14th March 2013, 11:12

        “the decision to stop sponsoring McLaren”
        Was it Vodafone’s decision? If Carlos Slim is getting involved, it’s very possible that he’s simply outbid Vodafone hence McLaren announcing this now. Why else would they announce that they’ve lost their title sponsor the day before first practice for the new season begins?

        • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 14th March 2013, 11:44

          That’s not the point I’m trying to make. I’m saying that the decision to stop sponsoring V8 Supercars had nothing to do with the decision to stop sponsoring McLaren.

          • petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 14th March 2013, 14:49

            Yeah fair enough. I wasn’t really disagreeing with what you said – more pointing out that the general assumption is that Vodafone have left McLaren (referencing lots of comments here saying they’ve lost Hamilton, Mercedes and now Vodafone!) when in reality, it’s very possible that the only decision that wasn’t McLaren’s was Hamilton leaving.

  2. lamo2802 (@lamo2741) said on 14th March 2013, 8:59

    Wasn’t Mclaren wanting to build some kind of identity with the current colour scheme?

  3. Andrew M said on 14th March 2013, 9:38

    I must be too cynical because on reading this article I assumed that they didn’t have anyone lined up to replace Vodafone and are buying themselves the time until December 2nd to get a new sponsor.

  4. Red Andy (@red-andy) said on 14th March 2013, 9:43

    Must be the easiest time anyone’s ever had parting company with Vodafone.

    Either that or Martin Whitmarsh is just bluffing, hoping they’ll offer him more free minutes.

  5. Xenon2 (@xenon2) said on 14th March 2013, 10:51

    The Times claims that Vodafone’s decision was reached due to the protests in Bahrain

  6. petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 14th March 2013, 11:08

    I’d bet my house on it being Telmex. It doesn’t matter if they operate mainly in Mexico – Slim isn’t exactly short of money!
    I imagine Slim would have liked Telmex on the car this year but due to McLaren’s Vodafone sponsorship, it wasn’t possible so they’ve stuck with Sauber (and Guiterrez) for another year.
    Slim has been pushing for a Mexican GP for a while so in theory, you could have Sergio Perez winning the Telmex Mexican Grand Prix in the Telmex McLaren Honda.

  7. Prof Kirk (@prof-kirk) said on 14th March 2013, 11:38

    Well if I was Luca di Montezemolo and heard that one of their biggest rivals needed a new engine…

  8. Calum (@calum) said on 14th March 2013, 12:06

    I wanted them to keep that livery, but if the have found a better offer then it’s obviously best to take that.

    Will it be Mexican money or a “big, American company” that was sort of rumoured last season. Whatever happened to Lotus’ Honeywell deal… or maybe it’s Coca-Cola!

  9. sam3110 (@sam3110) said on 14th March 2013, 12:15

    I would like them to get someone like Verizon in and go back to black on chrome with tiny bits of rocket red, and though it would look a bit like the Penske cars, they’re used to that anyway!

  10. What about Honeywell? heard rumours about it

  11. jochenrindt78 (@jochenrindt78) said on 14th March 2013, 13:41

    *Earth Dreams*

  12. Ben (@scuderia29) said on 14th March 2013, 14:10

    about time!! im so tired at looking at that same red & chrome livery each year, it was cool at first but soooo tired now

  13. electrolite (@electrolite) said on 14th March 2013, 14:15

    I doubt it’s Honda if it’s true they’re not planning on supplying engines until 2015.

    But you know what would be an interesting shout? Mugen.

  14. tmax (@tmax) said on 14th March 2013, 16:17

    So the 2014 car will be TELMEX McLaren Mercedes and the 2015 car will be TELMEX McLaren ( Mercedes or Honda). I think Lewis departure was a boon in making for Mclaren so that they could grab Perez (read “Telemx”) for the loss of Vodafone. Now it is very clear why Nico Hulkenberg did not get a chance in McLaren.

    Unfortunately for Vodafone this not what they expected when then came into McLaren. Moving from a partnership with Ferrari (which gave them 5 Consecutive world championship) to Mclaren in 2007, Vodafone thought of higher limelight probably with the stud Fernando Alonso in the stable. But what started out there was quite the opposite, first the embarrassment for the logo with the SpyGate scandal. Followed by the loss of Alonso. They “Overachieved” probably ( in the words of Whitmarsh) in 2008 with a WDC albeit losing the constructors championship. 2009 was a Brawn washout. Following 3 years were a tutorial to “How to lose a championship with the best driver line up and the best car”. with 6 years of turbulence, i think they had enough of it.

    @mantresx as discussed last week, this might answer the question about the logos on McLaren :)

    As stated by Martin Whitmarsh they have exceeded expectation with they 1 title which means was the expectation 0 Titles ?

    • Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 14th March 2013, 20:31

      Why are you so certain it is Telmex? They never had a title sponsorship arrangement at Sauber.

      • tmax (@tmax) said on 14th March 2013, 23:13

        @prisoner-monkeys The reason I feel Telmex has more chance to be a McLaren Sponsor is because of these logical interpretations.

        1) Obvious – Perez Move to McLaren even though he is from Ferrari Drivers Academy.
        2) Telmex is not the sponsor for Sauber hence they can be a Primary Sponsor now.
        3) For Telmex Sauber is very less in the Limelight compared to Mclaren to make any marketing impact
        4) Latin America is one of the fastest growing market with Brazil, Argentina, Venezuela, mexico et all. F1 has a very good following and growth in these countries. What better place than a McLaren (of course other than Ferrari) to have the logo to enhance their brand in Latin America.
        5) I had a feeling that Perez was backed by Telmex into the Ferrari academy too. But since Alonso is firmly secured there until 2016, Santander would not be willing to give up that space. Hence the reason why Montzemolo did not pick Perez to replace Massa last year. It was not because Perez is not “Ready Yet”. It was business nothing personal as Michael Corleone says.
        6) With Perez, Telmex would have asked for the Top sponsorship at Ferrari who were not ready to give up Santander just yet.
        7) Santander is also equally interested in the LatAm market. They have invested $270 Million in the Campinas Technology center in Brazil. 2 LatAm focused Logos on the same car would not make sense and dilute each other’s value.
        8) It was Telmex through their early plans with Ferrari which brought Perez to Ferrari Academy and subsequently to Sauber which runs on Ferrari power.

  15. dodge5847 (@dodge5847) said on 14th March 2013, 17:23

    Mclaren have invested 800 million pounds into their road car, now the new factory is up and running, is it possible that they may be their own sponsor? ie GT Mclaren Mercedes then GT Mclaren Honda

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