Montezemolo: sponsors’ departure no cause for panic

Ferrari and FOTA President Luca di Montezemolo has said that some F1 sponsors’ recent decisions to rush for the exit are no cause for panic in the sport. In recent days, Renault’s main sponsor ING announced its withdrawal with effect from next season, and speculation surrounds other financial service-sector sponsors’ involvement the sport. But Montezemolo told Italian newspaper Corriere dello Sport that the impact of the withdrawals should not be exaggerated.

“This is a difficult moment, but we have lived through others. The important thing is to not dramatise things.”

“I believe that F1, which is more and more international and involving many manufacturers and many teams, with strong cost reductions will always remain a strong place for sponsors,” said the Italian.

Montezemolo echoed other observers’ remarks that F1 has always dealt with sponsors coming and going, and that the exodus of tobacco sponsorship in the late 1990s was similar.

“There are some that will go and others that will come,” he added.

In further confirmation of a new spirit of accord between Ferrari and McLaren (perhaps in the face of adversity), Montezemolo’s remarks are similar to those Ron Dennis made recently.

”[F1 is] a hugely attractive sponsorship proposition, ‘ the McLaren man affirmed.