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Drivers and sponsorship


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#1 Roger Clark

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Posted 04 October 2002 - 18:29

According to this week's Autosport, Valentino rossi has turned down the opportunity to test a BAR-Honda because of his anti-tobacco stance. Apparantly he refuses to be associated with tobacco in his bike racing and Honda have had to turn down major sponsorship deals because of his views.

I can't think of any racing drivers who have had the courage to turn down drives or the power to insist that their team turns down sponsorship from companies whose products they dissaprove of.

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#2 ensign14

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Posted 04 October 2002 - 20:28

Michele Alboreto had to leave Tyrrell to join Larrousse because of a sponsor clash.

#3 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 04 October 2002 - 20:36

Courage is relative.

When you've got factory Honda and Repsol money, saying no to tobacco (or other sponsors) isnt such a big deal. My secret dream is raise my own sponsorship and be successful enough in European OW racing to be able to tell Danny Sullivan and his Red Bull boy band search to go to hell, but thats not courgaeous because I would allready have someone elses money backing me.

I think it'd be really impressive if a driver had to like sit out or something because of his convictions

#4 No27

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 10:14

Originally posted by ensign14
Michele Alboreto had to leave Tyrrell to join Larrousse because of a sponsor clash.


It was Michele himself that took the decision, no-one forced him. He thought it in principle it was wrong to be personally backed by one manufacturor and driving in a car with livery of the other.

I believe Michele had Marlboro backing and Tyrrell got a Camel deal? Or was it Marlboro for Michele and Mild Seven for Tyrrel?

Anyway, I like this kind of straightness, but I also consider cigarettes nothing to be very ethical about....

#5 Ray Bell

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 11:51

Anyone who takes a stand against tobacco is on the right track, whether or not they have other kinds of backing.

Too many drivers, as Roger implies, have just taken the cash and let the purveyors of the world's finest addictive poisons rape our sport.

#6 Tim Murray

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 12:43

It has always struck me as somewhat hypocritical for Frank Williams and Patrick Head, who are apparently very anti-smoking and gave poor old Rosberg a hard time over his weed-puffing habit, to then happily accept Barclays and Rothmans money (not forgetting Frank's Marlboro money in 1973).

#7 Vitesse2

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 13:59

Originally posted by Tim Murray
It has always struck me as somewhat hypocritical for Frank Williams and Patrick Head, who are apparently very anti-smoking and gave poor old Rosberg a hard time over his weed-puffing habit, to then happily accept Barclays and Rothmans money (not forgetting Frank's Marlboro money in 1973).


Barclay was an Arrows sponsor, not Williams. However, Williams did have a year with Camel - perhaps that's what you were thinking of Tim?

#8 DNQ

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 14:06

I am almost 100% certain Barclay were an associate sponsor with Williams in either 1988 or 1989. Nearly 100% sure about it. But yes, they did sponsor the beige Arrows in the late 80's I recall.

#9 Maldwyn

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 14:25

Originally posted by DNQ
I am almost 100% certain Barclay were an associate sponsor with Williams in either 1988 or 1989.

:up: Barclay sponsored Williams between 1988 - 1990.

#10 Don Capps

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 14:35

Stewart avoided taking any tobacco money when he formed his team, something which made lining up sponsors a lot more difficult....

#11 buddyt

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 14:50

it is early here and the coffee has not kicked in all the way.....but I remember something about Lemans in the mid nineties and Mario and his sons going to race a 962 together and something about Mr. Ron Hubble and his "religion" Dynantics book cause a stir with the Andretti's and they said no thanks.....will try to get more info when brain comes up to speed...... :drunk:

#12 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 17:31

Originally posted by Ray Bell

Too many drivers, as Roger implies, have just taken the cash and let the purveyors of the world's finest addictive poisons rape our sport.


Ive allways found its individuals who mess up their lives. Whether by smoking, over eating, or driving whilst drunk, no one is at fault but yourself.

I have no problem with advertising legal products.

#13 jarama

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 19:14

Originally posted by buddyt
it is early here and the coffee has not kicked in all the way.....but I remember something about Lemans in the mid nineties and Mario and his sons going to race a 962 together and something about Mr. Ron Hubble and his "religion" Dynantics book cause a stir with the Andretti's and they said no thanks.....will try to get more info when brain comes up to speed...... :drunk:


buddyt,

are you talking of "Dianetique", maybe? By 1987 they were sponsoring the Le Mans group C2 Spice driven by Gordon Spice himself & Fermín Vélez to 6th o/a and 1st in category.

Carles.

#14 Wolf

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 20:04

I don't see how 'tobbacco rapes the sport', Ray... As Ross said, if the product is legal (which it, with age restrictions, is). Are You saying that this 'we'll take your money and not show your logos' on cars isn't hypocritical?

Well, Rossi is good enough and worth the effort to string up non-tobbacco sponsors if it is his demand... And it's IMHO commendable, even though I am passionate smoker- if he strongly objects to tobbacco (as most sportsmen nowdays do) not to take their money...

#15 ensign14

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 20:17

I think 'Dianetique' was associated with Philippe de Henning, who shared the Spice/Velez car to a Le Mans class win. This also has something to do with Scientology (L Ron Hubbard's thing), the Travolta film about aliens which bombed was based on Scientology teaching (something about humans being an alien race which came to Earth 10,000 years ago).

#16 Vitesse2

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 21:24

Originally posted by ensign14
I think 'Dianetique' was associated with Philippe de Henning, who shared the Spice/Velez car to a Le Mans class win. This also has something to do with Scientology (L Ron Hubbard's thing), the Travolta film about aliens which bombed was based on Scientology teaching (something about humans being an alien race which came to Earth 10,000 years ago).


Don't know about de Henning, but the book "Dianetics" is indeed by L Ron Hubbard of Scientology infamy and masquerades as a lifestyle system, capable of curing drug addiction, alcoholism etc etc. "Battlefield Earth" was the Travolta film, based on a doorstop-sized novel by Hubbard. Both were published in the UK by New Era Books, which is - surprise, surprise - ultimately owned by the Church of Scientology ....

#17 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 21:38

Its a good way to save on taxes. Entry fees to the church are a little high though

#18 ghinzani

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 21:47

Originally posted by buddyt
it is early here and the coffee has not kicked in all the way.....but I remember something about Lemans in the mid nineties and Mario and his sons going to race a 962 together and something about Mr. Ron Hubble and his "religion" Dynantics book cause a stir with the Andretti's and they said no thanks.....will try to get more info when brain comes up to speed...... :drunk:


That L Ron Hubbard film adaptation was voted worst film of the year - I bought it on DVD to see why its so bad but have'nt picked up enuff courage to watch it yet in case I get sucked into the mad looney religion. If I recall correctly the story surrounding the Andrettis was that during the one off end of season Group C vs IMSA race in Miamii in 1988 the Andrettis where renewing their occasional relationship with the Kremer team to drive a 962. The event organisers had placed Dianetics sponsorship with the Kremer brothers for their two car team - the Andrettis pere et fils in one car and George Fouche or Sarel van der Merwe in the other car partnering Volker Weidler. Anyway the crux of the matter is Mario refused to run in a car with Dianetics on the side so the Brothers took it off to keep em in the race. Marios not stoopid, didnt want himself associated with anything like Scientology.

#19 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 05 October 2002 - 22:07

Battlefield Earth was beyond terrible. It was the first and thus far only movie ive ever sat there and though "oh my god I wonder if I can get my money back" after about 15 minutes. I actually became enraged because I realised there was no way I was going to get a refund so I sat there pretty much alone inthe theatre for 90 minutes spitting blood.

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#20 Megatron

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Posted 06 October 2002 - 09:20

Viagra was rumored to be in negotations with several NASCAR teams, more than one of which were rumored to have turned down the lucrative sponsorship out of fear of dropping merchandise sales and how exactly NASCAR would police the sponsorship. Poor Mark Martin. I'd have no problem wearing a Valvoline shirt (if I were a fan of his), but Viagra...?

Albereto lost his deal with Tyrrell because Alesi came with Camel money. Marlboro paid Alb's salary so he went bye-bye. Oddly enough, Albereto lost his Marlboro money when he became "inactive" after the Tyrrell affair, then ended up driving for Camel at Larrouse.

On a few occasions, a sponsor will get burned so bad that they will SUE a driver, ie Mike Borkowski getting it from AT&T after "damaging" their reputation with on and off track incidents.

When Mansell ran for Williams in 1994, he was not allowed to wear any Elf or Renault identifaction on his helmet, visor, or suit. I remember Texaco inparticular not being very happy with his F1 adventures.

#21 Ray Bell

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 02:44

Originally posted by Wolf
I don't see how 'tobbacco rapes the sport', Ray... As Ross said, if the product is legal (which it, with age restrictions, is). Are You saying that this 'we'll take your money and not show your logos' on cars isn't hypocritical?


And why are they not showing their logos?

Because it's not legal, of course...

While at the back door they're planning to drop the countries who don't allow them to run the logos and take their races to third world countries where the public are ripe for introduction to higher levels of carcinogens.

You might think differently when the Belgian GP is a distant memory...

Rape is not a strong word in these circumstances.

#22 Wolf

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 03:10

Ray, no- because it is hypocrisy. Or, are you telling me You can't walk to the store and legally buy tobbacco product (say, a pack of cigarettes)? Name me one country out of those with advertising ban where one cannot do that (of course, there are age limitations).

Must I remind You how much money of almost every country's health plan comes from taxes on tobbacco? Costs of cancer treatment for smokers who do get it are way lower than the aforementioned taxes, so that's no argument either... Neither of those points concern me (neither pay taxes on tobbacco nor have a health plan), but there's no point in denying facts. Or do You think any govt would allow such hazardous passtime if their profit wasn't greater than the costs they suffered from those who die of it?

And, if we lose Spa it won't be because of tobbacco- since we have plenty of races with advertising ban already. If Spa gets dropped (once the criticval mass is reached), it will be just a case of Bernie making a point on the issue and therefore not dropping some of boring races with tobnacco ban (say Magny Course)... Do You really think it will be as bad as Nürburgring, Monza and many more great tracks falling prey to safety campaign?

#23 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 04:21

Originally posted by Ray Bell


Because it's not legal, of course...


Only the advertising of, not the selling of. If anything the law saying you cant advert a legal product, is illegal

#24 Joe Fan

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 05:46

Although not F1 or tobacco related, NASCAR Legend Richard Petty refuses to put any alcohol stickers on his Winston Cup cars because of a promise he made to his mother. As a result, he does not get money from Budweisor whenever his cars win the pole (ie the Bud pole award) because of the absense of the little Bud sticker that are on most car's front quater panel.

#25 ensign14

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 08:11

Max Mosley made the point before a Select Committee of the Houses of Parliament that, although the EU wants to ban tobacco advertising, it pays a huge fortune to SUBSIDIZE tobacco growth...(See this month's F1 Racing.)

Whenever politicians get involved, forget logic and embrace hypocrisy, snouts in the trough &c. I wonder what the vested interests are behind Belgium's decision to pre-empt a ban. (Not attacking Belgium per se, I'm sure there are vested interests in other countries behind the decision NOT to pre-empt a ban.)

#26 josh.lintz

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 08:22

IIRC, Eddie Cheever hasn't had tobacco sponsorship. Suppossedly, he's against it.

#27 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 08:31

Didnt he drive the AJ Foyt Copenhagen car during the mid 90s?

#28 Ray Bell

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 09:57

If any of you read the book, The Smoking Business (Larry C White?) I suspect it may open your eyes a little to the hypocrises involved...

Yes, I said the advertising is illegal... I also said "the countries"... I only mentioned Belgium as the ultimate (as in ultimate circuit) example of what might be lost.

And don't kid yourselves, it will be the money angle that will cost us those races. The tobacco barons' money angle.

I also understand that in many countries there is a greater expenditure on smoking related disease than there is reaped in tobacco taxes.

#29 Megatron

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 10:17

Cheever drove for Gitanes and Ligier in the early 80s and I believe he wore Marlboro on his uniform while at Renault.

#30 Vitesse2

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 12:38

IMO the real problem with smoking advertising is yet to come. It is not beyond the bounds of possibility that some of the countries which are more active in discouraging smoking (I'm thinking particularly of Ireland and Belgium here, but the UK is not far behind) will put pressure on their state and commercial broadcasters to desist from carrying smoking-related programming (and F1 will certainly fall into that category). In Ireland, there are moves afoot to make tobacco almost invisible, even at the point of sale - it will be illegal even to display packets of cigarettes, or even their logos. Packets will be sold from plain dispensers, with strict regulations governing how large the unadorned brand names can be displayed. How will the Irish government square that with the state-owned broadcaster showing Marlboro and B&H logos every second Sunday?

No particular axe to grind, BTW - I'm an ex-smoker, but currently rely on the (legal) sale of tobacco for part of my income.

#31 Ross Stonefeld

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Posted 08 October 2002 - 13:50

This Red Bull driver's search for American talent is experiencing some hiccups. Apparently drivers, even some that have no drives for next year, are hesitant to sign the contracts because of some clauses in it about payment.

I dunno if thats courage or just greed :cool:

#32 buddyt

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Posted 10 October 2002 - 01:26

I remember !!!!!!!!!! :eek: Jan Opperman "the flying hippie" was told by his car owners and sponsers to get a HAIR cut before being allowed to drive in the indy 500........His car was owned by Vels--Parnelli Jones racing....that had to be a culcure clash.....crew cut Parnelli and the long haired Opperman......But man, he could drive.... :up:

#33 FEV

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Posted 11 October 2002 - 18:28

About scientology in racing, I can confirm it was all based on Philippe de Henning who was (is ?) a proheminent member of the French arm of this organisation. 'Dianetics' decals were always present on his cars, and often on those of Louis Descartes (the ALD founder) who was to die in a road accident. Strange how much sects leaders are attracted by racing : the infamous franco-canadian Raël is a regular competitor in Canadian racing (and sometimes in SCCA, even Trans-Am).