Williams will lose their title sponsor Martini at the end of the 2018 season.
The news comes as the Bacardi Group – who own the Martini brand -will end their involvement in Formula One after their Williams contract comes to an end. Claire Williams has said that the team’s young driver line-up of Lance Stroll (19) and Sergey Sirotkin (22) has had no influence on the decision. Despite Martini’s wishes for a driver over the age of 25 for marketing purposes, Williams says:
“[They were] fully aware of our plans and supportive of it. I suppose next year, it gives us the freedom to do what we are able to do without having to worry about any age limit”
Martini have been associated with Williams since the 2014 season, and previously sponsored Brabham and Lotus in the 1970s. The news means that the 2019 Williams is likely to have a refreshed livery.
After graduating in 2015 with a First Class honours degree in English Language and Literature, Nicky Haldenby, a lifelong fan of Formula 1, founded the Lights Out F1 Blog in 2016. Now in its sixth season, the blog has become a firm fan-favourite, delving deep into the sport’s history books and lifting the cover on unusual F1 statistics. Nicky also writes at F1Destinations and Motorsport Guides. In 2017 and 2018, he wrote for Badger GP. Nicky is also the host of the F1 Rewind Podcast and can be heard as the resident stats man on the 2 Soft Compounds Podcast.