Russian car builder to sponsor Renault

Sponsorhip from high places for Vitaly Petrov

Mar.2 (GMM) Russia is set to sponsor the Renault formula one team in 2010, prime minister Vladimir Putin has announced.

Russian rookie Vitaly Petrov has been signed to race this year for the Enstone based team, which has been essentially taken over by the private equity firm Genii Capital.

But the team retains its identity and name, and French carmaker Renault’s chief executive Carlos Ghosn met this week with Putin.

“We will sponsor this activity (the F1 team) as a first step, and do not rule out later increasing our financial participation in the project,” the prime minister is quoted as saying in Moscow by the news agency EFE.

Putin said Renault’s signing of the first Russian driver Petrov, 25, is a “great symbol of cooperation” between the French marque and Russia.

He said the branding of the Russian carmaker Lada will appear on Renault’s 2010 car and team.

Renault bought a 25 per cent stake in Lada parent Avtovaz for $1 billion in 2008, and it is reported that Ghosn may now increase the French marque’s involvement.

  • Bec

    Funny how Russian companies can find money for F1, but US companies that sign sponsorship contracts with their own USF1 team, fail to deliver, a sign of the times maybe, a new world order with China, Russia and soon India the big economic powers.

  • Bec

    The Russian government has recently announced that it will be cutting back its sponsorship of the Sochi Winter Olympics in 2014 by US$600m, because of the global economic crisis.

    Ahh, but investing in F1, and as we all know F1 is more global and has a wider reach than the Olympics.

  • dude

    if i am not mistaken usf1 was in doubt from the day it was announced. the main guys are not even americans. if they want usa f1 team they got to encourage guys like penske or andretti to spearhead the project and even then it will be tough

  • Bec

    They simply couldn’t get their US sponsors to part with any money.

    The problem with the USA is it’s a very isolationist country, they prefer to make up their own sports where they can be world champions easily, rather than try to compete on the global stage, I think the sponsors USF1 had lined up got scared that they wouldn’t dominate from year 1.

    Oh well, there has been 100’s of teams come and go, from ATS to Zakspeed, and there’ll be 100s more, because sometimes ambition outweighs talent.