Sports News

Santander renew McLaren sponsorship

MILAN (Reuters) - Spain’s Banco Santander will sponsor Formula One rivals Ferrari and McLaren next season after extending an existing deal with Lewis Hamilton’s British-based team on Monday.

McLaren, who won the drivers’ championship with Hamilton last year, said in a statement that Spain’s biggest bank had seen its brand awareness in Britain rise from 20 percent to 82 percent since they teamed up in 2007.

“We are very proud of our relationship with Santander and to be part of their ever-expanding Formula One involvement,” said McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh.

No financial details were given. The McLaren statement referred to branding on the drivers’ overalls.

Santander came to McLaren in 2007 with Spain’s double world champion Fernando Alonso, who left at the end of an ill-fated season that saw his relationship with McLaren bosses deteriorate.

The bank announced a five-year deal with Ferrari at the Italian Grand Prix last week, a move that fuelled further speculation that Alonso would move from Renault to the current champions next season.

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