It’s rare for F1 teams to offer up sponsorship room on its ‘moving billboard’ cars for no extra fee, but that’s what McLaren is doing over in IndyCar.
The British outfit is making a return to the Indy 500, running a car for Fernando Alonso – who is skipping the Monaco GP – alongside Honda and Andretti.
But, because McLaren has done so poorly over the last few seasons in F1, this has led to drastically less exposure from TV and other media for its partners.
To offset the loss of exposure in F1, McLaren decided to not charge its Indy 500 car sponsors any extra for their logos being added to the car.
Team boss Zak Brown is quoted by Autosport saying:
“It’s something we’re doing as part of our larger motor racing programme, to deliver for our partners. It isn’t anything we have charged them incrementally for. As good partners, you need to recognise when you’re delivering and when you are not and we’re not delivering on track, which directly impacts their exposure.
“So, this is a great way to offset that loss of exposure we are generating now with a tremendous amount of exposure. We felt that was the right thing to do. Commercially, it’s to make sure we deliver to our partners the exposure we promised.”
Alonso will start his debut Indy 500 from fifth on the grid, right in the middle of the second row, while Jenson Button has replaced him for Monaco.