Williams losing Martini

As McLaren’s Zak Brown has intimated, the lack of a title sponsor is a very painful proposition for a Formula 1 team and a key interest in solving. For those teams with title sponsors, they enjoy a investment relationship they rely on heavily.

Today’s news that the iconic liveried brand, Martini, is now pulling out of F1 and leaving the Williams F1 team at the end of 2018. A big blow to Williams and blow to F1 fans who rejoiced at the return of the iconic stripes having not seen them in F1 since 1975. Claire Williams said:

“While we would both like to do so, the Bacardi Group have told us that they will step away entirely from Formula 1 when our contract expires at the end of this year.

“They have many brands to support and obviously their strategic priorities evolve over time.”

It’s a shame as Martini is such a great brand and livery and carries historic meaning and imagery. Once again, title sponsor in F1 are becoming very difficult to find and it is an erosion the sport needs to consider very carefully. It has never really recovered since 2008 and the teams have relied mainly on the prize money.

Hat Tip: Autosport

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Hi Todd. It would be interesting to hear from your old mate Christian Sylt (Formula Money) to get a broader view on the reasons major sponsorships are so difficult for F1 teams to obtain.
Presumably F1 is no longer seen as a strong marketing tool, understanding the reasons for that might be enlightening (or disappointing) for us F1 fans.

sunny stivala

Christian Sylt an old mate of NC? that’s interesting, I have followed Sylt for a long time but I never figured that out.


Well, I say ‘old mate’, I’m pretty sure Sylt was on an FBC podcast one time.

Marshall Evans

I wonder if two paid drivers have anything to do with this? My thinking is Bacardi feels with all the fuss over paid drivers on the team and not the continued support from them makes them say we are taking their money else where. Anyhoo, just a therory/wildguess/hypotheses.

Marshall, Las Vegas

PS – thanks for all the hard work PF team.


I think sponsorships are going to be harder to secure since F1 viewership is on the decline and most of the content is going behind a paywall. The ROI on sponsorship is probably no longer there.