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Airline & Air Industry Sponsorship


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#1 BRG

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 09:51

The recent revival of the thread "Tobacco Racing" led me to muse about other groups of sponsors.  One such, that would seem to be an obvious one for motorsport with its reputation for speed, international travel and general jet-settery, is the air industry.

 

Perhaps the best known is Alitalia*, the perennially bankrupt and now-defunct Italian state airline, which sponsored FIAT and Lancia  works rally cars with a rather fetching and well-remembered livery.  But did they sponsor anything significant on the race track?  British Airways briefly sponsored rally cars for Ford's Boreham factory team and of course Paul Stoddart's European Aviation sponsored/owned Minardi for a while.  However, beyond those my memory fails me, but surely there must have been (many?) others?  

 

Although maybe the plight of Alitalia is a clue.  Airlines seem to be always financially precarious and perhaps therefore unwilling to splash out precious funds?

 

(* back in my air industry days, Alitalia was said to be an anagram for Always Late In Takingoff, Always Late In Arriving)



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#2 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 10:21

http://www.kalittaair.com/

#3 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 10:25

USAF has sponsored Indy cars in the past.

#4 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 10:25

Lear built an unsuccessful car for Indianapolis

Edited by B Squared, 18 April 2024 - 10:26.


#5 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 10:40

Piedmont and Allegiant have sponsored Nascar teams.

Edited by B Squared, 18 April 2024 - 10:40.


#6 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 10:41

https://forums.autos...ne-sponsorship/

#7 Michael Ferner

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 10:48

BAF, British Air Ferries, comes to mind. I don't know how big they were (are?), and of course it all had to do with the Keegan connection.



#8 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 10:59

Whelen
https://mikegoulian.com/sponsors

#9 jcbc3

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:02

Tony Fernandez of Air Asia

Vijay Mallya of Kingfisher



#10 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:04

FAI with McLaren

https://www.corporat...mclaren-racing/

#11 jcbc3

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:05

Look what I found: https://forums.autos...ne-sponsorship/

 

Late again.  :mad:



#12 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:06

https://type550.com/...acing_sponsors/

#13 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:06

Look what I found: https://forums.autos...ne-sponsorship/


See post 6

#14 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:07

https://www.speedspo...-stock-sponsor/

#15 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:08

Internet search engines are your friend there's numerous examples of your question if one takes the time to look.

#16 Henri Greuter

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:11

This one must appeal to you B Squared::

 

 

Several of the Scott Brayton cars in the Dick Simon years had NorthWest sponsorship too!   You can find it back on the Onyx models of the 1990 and/or 1991 cars of Scott. Since I'm near certain that you must have them, check it out!

 

In fact, I rmember that one year when I went to Indy and had arranged my flights with NW Airlines at the Amsterdam headquarters of the company I mentioned that and then they wanted to borrow one of my own Onyx models to put it on display in the windows during May.

It did not yield me anything but I helped them out. Certainly in that time any promotion for Indy over in the netherlands one way or another was welcome.


Edited by Henri Greuter, 18 April 2024 - 11:11.


#17 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:15

This one must appeal to you B Squared::


Several of the Scott Brayton cars in the Dick Simon years had NorthWest sponsorship too! You can find it back on the Onyx models of the 1990 and/or 1991 cars of Scott. Since I'm near certain that you must have them, check it out!

Good one Henri, not quite sure how I forgot that one. I do like planes along with racecars but I guess I pitched in because it's just so easy to find massive amounts of information on this subject.

#18 Henri Greuter

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:23

Good one Henri, not quite sure how I forgot that one. I do like planes along with racecars but I guess I pitched in because it's just so easy to find massive amounts of information on this subject.

 

 

Probably because the NW decals got kinda lost within the Am-Way Pink,White&Blue and are not that big at all???? 



#19 B Squared

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 11:45

You're being too kind Henri, it's more likely old and forgetful.

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#20 Henri Greuter

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 12:04

You're being too kind Henri, it's more likely old and forgetful.

 

TBH, if it wans't for that one car of me being loaned for display in the window of the agency that year, I might have forgotten all about that myself as well.



#21 AJCee

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 12:47

Flying Tigers for Benetton in 1986

Does the 54 Squadron dedication on the TWR Jaguars count?

#22 10kDA

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 14:25

Thanks for posting. I knew Don and Julia Downie. The two of them lived and breathed flying, focused on the small end of the spectrum and specifically homebuilt airplanes. They both were prolific writers on the subject of General Aviation. Julia passed a little over a year ago, and Don has been gone for quite some time. I had heard some tales of flying over the course and shuttling members of the team here and there but I didn't know about Porsche trying the Fletcher Air jet-cooling system aka exhaust ejectors or augmenters.

 

Edit: That's Don standing on the wing of the Navion next to the 550 in the B&W pic on that page.


Edited by 10kDA, 18 April 2024 - 14:27.


#23 Secretariat

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 14:26

USAF has sponsored Indy cars in the past.

Similar to this is Panoz's Spirit of Hendrick's Field B-17 tribute.



#24 Ray Bell

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 14:47

There was a long association between Elfin and the now-defunct Ansett Airlines...

 

I'm not sure whether there was any cash changed hands, but there would certainly have been travel and freight assistance and other benefits.

 

In the early seventies Malaysia Singapore Airlines had signage on Max Stewart's cars. Possibly, again, only contributing transport to events like the Japan GP.

 

TAA (Trans Australia Airlines), now absorbed into Qantas, were quite well represented. They had signage on the Holden Dealer Team cars and backed the 'Driver to Europe' Formula Ford series for many years. I know I had quite a number of 'sub-load' (standby) tickets from them when following events for the magazine. Drivers in the series often used these too, saving time not having to drive to interstate meetings.



#25 Nathan

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 14:48

Airlines are a terrible business.  I think F1 has always been good for selling private jets. Bombardier & Piaggio, and now the charter companies, giving credit to TAG Aviation starting that a long time ago.

 

I remember Korea Air on the Benetton's.  Was it Gulf Air that splashed out more recently?  I think OP raises a good point, why isn't Expedia on a car?  We are watching cars race in amazing destinations and the travel companies don't think it's good marketing?  The Malaysians did with the Stewarts.

 

USAF sponsorship is for recruiting soldiers.


Edited by Nathan, 18 April 2024 - 14:50.


#26 10kDA

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 14:55


  I think OP raises a good point, why isn't Expedia on a car?
 

 

They may not need additional promotion.



#27 Nathan

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 15:33

I suppose it's already in the mind 'hey Singapore looks cool, let me check it out on Expedia", or whatever is common to your mind.  I suppose now that companies can see the free boost in website traffic during each grand prix they can no longer be sold on the idea pitched by sponsorship sales that logos on the car are needed.



#28 RS2000

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 15:38

We focus on the obscene amounts involved in F1 but just how many "sponsorship" arrangements involve money directly?

Many of Ford's so-called sponsorships were apparently "in kind" and one stage removed from any benefit directly to the works team, eg. Eaton Yale fork lift trucks for Ford facilities nothing to do with Boreham. I imagine British Airways (with Ford and later Austin Rover or whatever they were called in the later TR7 days) was much the same. 

Presumably much sponsorship is designed to disguise the exact amounts involved. I recall a few occasions when the normal free entry and free hotels deals offered to amateur UK crews on Belgian rallies was supplemented by start money that turned out to be the equivalent of £100 rather than the 100 Belgian francs expected and the somewhat furtive handing it over with requests to not discuss it elsewhere. Reality probably was this came indirectly from whichever of the two cigarette brands of Belga or Bastos was sponsoring that particular rally. Happy days....



#29 70JesperOH

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 15:57

Australian Airlines comes to mind. Sponsor for the Toyota Team Australia touring car team in the 1980s and quite a few more I believe.

 

BOAC, sponsor of a round of the World Sports Prototype Championship at Brands Hatch in the late 1960s.

 

Jesper



#30 BuddyCarSeries

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 16:28

I kept running into these as well when looking for Tobacco so I started somewhat of a list. I’ve seen more that I didn’t pin just because I was more focused on tobacco. Here is the Pinterest board I have.
https://pin.it/3W0TOTmBc

#31 alansart

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 16:46

Iberia Airlines sponsored Ricky Von Opel and Mike Walker in their F3 Ensign's back in the 70's  ;)

https://www.f3histor...cturers/ensign/



#32 Henk Vasmel

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 17:13

Carel Godin de Beaufort and his Ecurie Pan Am (1963-64)



#33 Ray Bell

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 17:14

Originally posted by 70JesperOH
Australian Airlines comes to mind. Sponsor for the Toyota Team Australia touring car team in the 1980s and quite a few more I believe.


Who are (or were) they?

#34 airbox

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 18:17

Fly Saudia with Williams

 

I think this was on the cars in some form all the way from Patrick Neve in the March 761 all the way through to the FW09



#35 70JesperOH

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 18:52

Ray, Toyota Team Australia was based in Toyota's Australian hq in Melbourne, lead by Tony Niovanni with John Faulkner and John Smith being two of their most successful drivers. A casual look through one of the 1987 Bathurst annuals reveals that the Peter Brock Mobil team, Frank Gardners JPS BMW M3s, Fred Gibsons Peter Jackson Nissan Skylines the Colin Bond Caltex Alfa and the Allan Grice Bob Jane T-Marts Commodore was also sponsored by Australian Airlines.

 

Jesper



#36 Perruqueporte

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 19:11

As a PR crisis management professional and, early in my PR career, as a sponsorship specialist, it never ceased to amaze me how many CEOs and business owners were prepared to accept reputational risks in exchange for publicity, glamour and a good time.

One major airline (already mentioned in this thread) came to us asking for an independent reputational risk analysis with regard to its possible sponsorship of an F1 team. We concluded our report with the question: “How damaging to your brand could it be if one of the cars wearing the same livery as all of your aircraft, were to crash and erupt in flames on prime-time television, with repeats of the incident (which in a worst case scenario could represent a tragedy) being shown on news bulletins for a day or three thereafter?” There could only be one answer to that question. Even so, the sponsorship went ahead, and I was required to write a crisis management plan that addressed such a scenario. Thankfully the plan was never invoked. And everybody had a good time!

Christopher W.

#37 BRG

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 19:57

As I suspected, my memory was very faulty!  How could I have forgotten about Saudia and BAF??   Although some of the others are new to me.  



#38 AJCee

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 21:22

Saudia, and Korean Air are a bit of a collective amnesia faux pas! :)
Was it Virgin Group as a whole that sponsored Brawn?

#39 AJCee

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 21:24

Thinking about it, Flying Tigers also sponsored Damon Hill’s F3 Ralt.

We could have a string of these threads going down through the glamour of central heating products and ending with waste disposal services…

Edited by AJCee, 18 April 2024 - 21:26.


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#40 Ray Bell

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 22:06

Originally posted by 70JesperOH
Ray, Toyota Team Australia was based in Toyota's Australian hq in Melbourne, lead by Tony Niovanni with John Faulkner and John Smith being two of their most successful drivers. A casual look through one of the 1987 Bathurst annuals reveals that the Peter Brock Mobil team, Frank Gardners JPS BMW M3s, Fred Gibsons Peter Jackson Nissan Skylines the Colin Bond Caltex Alfa and the Allan Grice Bob Jane T-Marts Commodore was also sponsored by Australian Airlines.


I see it now...

The Qantas logo is alongside the wording, so that's Qantas.

#41 opplock

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 22:12

Thinking about it, Flying Tigers also sponsored Damon Hill’s F3 Ralt.

We could have a string of these threads going down through the glamour of central heating products and ending with waste disposal services…

 

With an honourable mention for Pukka Pies. 

 

Back to airlines: Graeme Lawrance's Ferrari was sponsored by Air New Zealand. Subsequently his Surtees TS15 and Lola T332 were sponsored by Singapore Airlines.



#42 D-Type

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 22:23

As well as teams, airlines sometimes supported events.  For example East African Airways sponsored the Safari, including having their name and logo on every car, which meant that practically every photo of a competing car gave them a "free" advert.  And I think QANTAS subsidised the Bathurst race on occasion.



#43 Ray Bell

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Posted 18 April 2024 - 23:24

No direct sponsorship of the Bathurst race by Qantas...

 

Not even subsidiary prizemoney, I don't think, not official anyway. Maybe bonuses for the drivers running their logo if they placed.



#44 Librules

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Posted 19 April 2024 - 02:41

Who are (or were) they?


Australian Airlines was a re-branding of TAA in the mid 80's. A few years down the track it was gobbled up by Qantas.

#45 Roryswood

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Posted 19 April 2024 - 06:14

Irish driver Vivian Candy secured sponsorship from Air Florida for 2 outings in Akin 935 and Dorset Racing de Cadnet before the company ceased trading , Ryanair sponsored Barry Barrable in Irish club racing , Lawrence Bristowe was sponsored by the family helicopter business in BTCC

#46 Stephen W

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Posted 19 April 2024 - 07:49

BOAC and then British Airways sponsored the Brands Hatch World Sportscar Championship rounds.

 

Aeroflot sponsored Satura Nakajima's F3 Nova



#47 kevins

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Posted 19 April 2024 - 08:02

Stewart/Jaguar F! teams were sponsored by Lear.



#48 Stephen W

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Posted 19 April 2024 - 08:41

A couple more:

 

Singapore Airlines sponsored Terry Perkins F3 Ralt.

 

Transmeridian Air Cargo were another of Rupert Keergan's sponsors on his 1976 F3 March.

 

British Island Airways sponsored Ivor Jones in his March 743 in 1977.

 

Luton Airport sponsored Mike O'Brien's Anson SA3 in 1982.

 

Not sure if this counts but DHL Worldwide Courier Service sponsored Huub Rothengatter's F2 Chevron in 1979.



#49 68targa

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Posted 19 April 2024 - 08:54

Niki Lauda went the other way and sponsored the airline industry.



#50 Roryswood

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Posted 19 April 2024 - 09:35

Flying Tigers Porsche 935s