Formula racing is one of the most marketable forms of professional car racing. The drivers are personable and wear the logo of brands like Puma on their sleeves with pride, such as Britain’s Lewis Hamilton, and the vehicles are custom designed.
This side of the sport has allowed it to receive sufficient support from various sponsors over the years. In particular, Formula One (F1) racing, which was officially standardized and recognized in 1946, has seen competing teams like Mercedes and Renault sponsored by the likes of Tommy Hilfiger and Microsoft. Really, it’s no surprise that reputable companies want to be involved in F1 as it is one of the most well-known categories of formula racing.
Interestingly, the popularity of F1 racing has recently attracted the attention of new brands and companies. Perhaps Netflix’s Formula 1: Drive to Survive documentary series, which first aired in 2019, played a role in this. The series introduced new audiences to the sport, making it a good time for companies to get involved.
The betting and gambling industry’s had a dominant presence in formula racing since roughly 2018, when F1 announced, through its sponsorship and data rights deal with Interregional Sports Group, the allowance of live in-play betting at the Grand Prix. In 2021, this presence continues to grow.
This growth was demonstrated in May by sports betting group Entain after the company’s brands PartyPoker and PartyCasino entered into a partnership with McLaren Racing. PartyCasino, which offers a large list of casino bonuses, including free spins and a 100% bonus up to $1,000, kicked off the partnership on May 23 at the Monaco Grand Prix. PartyCasino’s brand appeared on the helmet of McLaren driver Daniel Ricciardo. Just as new players on PartyCasino can access bonuses when they create an account or make a first deposit, they can now also access McLaren-themed casino content.
One of the fastest-growing cryptocurrency platforms has also moved into the formula racing space. On June 29, Crypto.com revealed a deal with F1 that will see the platform, which has more than ten million users worldwide, be the 2021 Sprint series’ inaugural global partner. The new series will have drivers competing on Saturday afternoons of the Grand Prix weekends, and the result will determine the starting grid for the full distance Grand Prix. As the inaugural global partner, the platform will also have a trackside presence at all of the remaining races left in the season.
Moving into F1 racing furthers the platform’s presence in the sports industry. In May, Crypto.com sponsored the final of Italy’s soccer competition Coppa Italia between Atalanta and Juventus. Juventus won 2-1. Previously, it signed a deal in March with NHL team the Montreal Canadiens, who competed in this year’s Stanley Cup Finals. The Canadiens lost the series 4-1 to the Tampa Bay Lightning.
Sports sponsorships center on brand awareness, and formula racing is one of the best sports a company can be involved in, as there are many chances to accumulate international attention. Whereas before F1 partnerships were mainly companies like Red Bull, casino companies and cryptocurrency platforms are dominating in 2021.