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McLaren forms partnership with Petrobras

NEWS STORY
20/02/2018

Oil giant Petrobras, most noted for its involvement with Williams, is back in Formula 1, after forming a technical partnership with McLaren. The agreement provides for a technology partnership to develop high-performance fuel and lubricants, and the partnership may be extended to other strategic areas, such as the sharing of technologies between the parties. The Petrobras brand will be displayed on the team's cars, uniforms and physical facilities.

"Partnerships are strategic for Petrobras. The technologies developed for Formula 1 will be transferred to the products we offer our customers, and being at the forefront of fuel and lubricant development is of value to our company, its shareholders and customers," said Petrobras' CEO, Pedro Parente.

"Brazil's passion for Formula 1 is legendary," added Zak Brown, "and the country has produced some of the most iconic names in Formula 1 history. We are delighted to deepen our relationship with Brazilian F1 fans through our partnership with Petrobras, a flagship brand for the nation. Petrobras is an ambitious organisation and we look forward to McLaren being an accelerator and enhancer in their brand-building efforts."

As part of the agreement, Petrobras, through its CENPES Research Centre, will develop gasoline and engine lubricants specially formulated for the team, which will be used in races in the 2019 season. The company will have a laboratory in the McLaren team's garage during practice sessions and races, allowing real-time analysis of fuel performance.

Petrobras' Director of Production Development and Technology, Hugo Repsold, emphasised F1's contribution to the development of next-generation fuels: "We consider Formula 1 the best possible laboratory for testing new fuels and lubricants due to the extreme conditions to which it subjects engines. After being tested to their limits, new fuels and lubricants will be applied in conventional cars and used by our consumers in their daily lives".

In the view of Petrobras' Executive Manager for Communication and Branding, Bruno Motta, this partnership is strategic not only in terms of brand visibility and image strengthening, but is also directly connected to the company's business: "This deal is completely aligned with our brand positioning, which values knowledge and our unique technical capabilities to develop solutions. It is also associated with one of the main strategies in our Business and Management Plan, which is to prepare the company for a future based on a low-carbon economy by developing high-quality, highly energy-efficient fuels", Motta said.

"The effective development of the fuels and lubricants we race is a mission-critical contribution to our primary objective of success in Formula 1," said Eric Boullier. "Petrobras is already highly experienced and successful in Formula 1 and we are extremely impressed by the resources and specialists at their disposal. The CENPES research and development facility in Rio is world-class and has quickly demonstrated to McLaren, and our engine partner Renault, its capability to deliver the best. We look forward to a long and highly successful partnership with Petrobras."

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1. Posted by Amspeed, 22/02/2018 1:14

"I don't think we'll ever know the 'real' reason why Ron was given the 'heave-ho' - I would think something far more personal between Mansour and Ron himself. I think it was a big mistake that, over the long-term, will ultimately reflect on the value of the McLaren Group as a whole. Let's face it, Ron WAS McLaren. Without Ron it's just another faceless manufacturer. And yes, if the racing team doesn't start performing this will have a halo effect on road car sales. The irony is that Mansour Ojjeh would still be an obscure middle-eastern businessman if it wasn't for Ron. His father initiated the family sponsorship of Formula One beginning with Williams and Ojjeh Junior inherited that legacy. Ron elevated that with the TAG Porsche engine deal and Ojjeh has never looked back. Sure, Ron made some f*** ups along the way but, invariably, left to his own devices , I think he would have come up with a solution to put them back up front - and to improve the bottom line.
I think the future of McLaren is now in the hands of Eric Boullier who is the most experienced and practical 'guide' the team has. And who chose him? Ron Dennis. Mansour Ojjeh and his friends at Mumtalakat should at least be thankful for one of Ron's final and inspired decisions. But I doubt they've given it much thought. "

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2. Posted by Spindoctor, 21/02/2018 16:18

"I wonder if they're beginning to regret giving Ron the heave-ho. I assumed at the time it was mainly to move to a more "Commercial" approach, but that doesn't seem to be working that well.
McLaren Motors is a sucessful company which makes rather decent fast cars. Although they are separate Companies, I don't suppose that McLaren group dislikes the halo effect of the Road Cars on its F1 efforts. :-)"

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3. Posted by Anthony, 21/02/2018 15:50

"Marketing and sponsorship guru Zak doesn’t seem to be making much progress here .... I would have thought that the lack of a title sponsor by the start of the Barcelona tests will indicate that there won’t be one for 2018. I suspect that Ron would have done a better job."

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4. Posted by Amspeed, 21/02/2018 12:34

"All these supply and collaborative partnerships can only be good of course but we still don't seem to be seeing anything substantive in terms of pure 'sponsorship' at McLaren. Despite the corporate 'gobbledygook' I'm failing to see what Petrobras really get out of this other than the exposure. A 'laboratory' in the garage area....?! Please...! I'm sure Petrobras have all the laboratories and research facilities they need back at base. Longer-term this does perhaps open the door for a Brazilian driver and there may be some strategic thinking going on here. Overall, a positive for McLaren, but Zak still needs to pull some rabbits out of the hat to justify his position - now in it's second year. So far his accomplishments have been pretty tepid and unspectacular."

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5. Posted by FormerF1Fan, 21/02/2018 10:47

"Now that's what I call wize thinking and an important strategic sponsor. They're going to provide security services. Now team members can get to and from the airport at the Brazilian GP without getting robbed..."

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6. Posted by Editor, 21/02/2018 9:18

"@ Motorsport-fan

Re: Still no title sponsor, but they do get free oil and petrol again!"

Zak has also agreed a deal where they get triple stamps on Sundays and a piece of cutlery after 1,000 gallons."

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7. Posted by F1nerd, 21/02/2018 9:12

"bfairy.
Only the same spec fuel not the same brand."

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8. Posted by Motorsport-fan, 21/02/2018 8:57

"Still no title sponsor, but they do get free oil and petrol again!"

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9. Posted by bfairey, 21/02/2018 8:23

"I THOUGHT THAT THE TEAMS HAD TO USE ALL THE SAME GASOLINE."

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10. Posted by hussainahm, 21/02/2018 8:20

"Nice additional to the partners. I don't think it's a title-level partner though, as usually that involves a driver as well, a Brazilian in this case."

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