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Ilmor quits MotoGP
16/03/2007
Ilmor has announced that it is dropping out of MotoGP until such time as sponsorship is acquired.

Mario Illien has been quoted as saying:

"It is very disappointing and I underestimated how difficult it is to secure backing for this particular activity. I knew it would be expensive and I’m not surprised from the cost point of view, but I’m surprised how difficult it has been to secure the right backing. We were confident and hopeful that we would get sufficient backing to go racing and that has not materialised.

We need to act rather than spending a lot of money and having a problem later on. We have been thinking about this for some time, I was thinking of withdrawing before the start of the season. As time went on I was hopeful we could secure something. But at the same time we moved forward in the hope and belief that we could attract some backing. We have some backing but not sufficient to run for the whole season. We are not going to race in Jerez. Dorna is very disappointed that we are not participating but they respect and understand our decision. Without financial support it is too difficult."

Apparently they will continue developing their V4 engine in the hope that racing can continue at a later date.

It's such a shame that we've lost the one British race team and it highlights the problems many of the teams are having now that tobacco sponsorship has been banned in Europe. The Kenny Roberts team has been muttering that it too may have to drop out. I hope that a new generation of sponsors are found for MotoGP or things may get very difficult.

Mad

Gone Away
I heard a theory that Michael Schumacher's retirement would free up a lot of sponsorship that would then go to other forms of motorsport as well as F1. I guess Mario Ilien has killed that one stone dead...
Date Added: 17/03/2007

Keeef
You need big corporates for these international attraction sports. Tobacco was ideal as the brands are worldwide and the product consumable. There is very little else with the same reach.
Alcohol would be a good substitute but the corporations that own the big beer brands will get better returns sponsoring localised events than massive internationals. There is, of course, also the issue with associating alcohol and riding a bike at 150 mph. Probably not the best mix.

I think there should be a worldwide organisation (along the lines of NATO) that examine a brand and match it to a sport/team. The corporation then has to pump that team with money. It would be great.
For motorsport you'd have a successful, innovative, fast, winning team sponsored by Apple or Google.

While your team whose engine blows up every other race and vehicles always off the pace would have that big windows log on it.

Obviously golf would have to be sponsored by Lloyds or some other dull banking institute.
While anyone attempting to circumnavigate the globe in a hot air balloon would be sponsored by Pfizer under the viagra brand.

Date Added: 18/03/2007

Gone Away
Cricket could have all the accountancy firms, ice hockey the arms manufacturers, Tour de France the steroid makers, the possibilities are endless. I think you're on to something with this idea, Keef.
Date Added: 18/03/2007

keeef
Its the way forward.
Weightwatchers for Sumo wrestling?

Date Added: 18/03/2007

Mad
Darts would be sponsored by BUPA for the inevitable coronaries...
Date Added: 18/03/2007

keeef
See, who needs tobacco sponsorship?
Date Added: 19/03/2007

Mad
The 100m chain smoke?
Date Added: 19/03/2007

keeef
your lungs would be burning after that exercise.
Date Added: 20/03/2007

keeef
Where were you today? I sent an update for you to read.
You havent been rear ending couples on lovers lane have you? Be careful Bruh, they'll do you for dogging :)
Date Added: 22/03/2007

Mad
Sorry Keef,
I'm snowed under at work so no messenger apps for a couple of days... :(
Date Added: 22/03/2007

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