BWT – Austrian manufacturer of water treatment systems – was, up until this year, title sponsor of the Racing Point Formula 1 Team. However, that deal came to an abrupt end with Racing Point owner Lawrence Stroll’s acquisition of Aston Martin, and the subsequent rebranding of the Formula 1 team that followed.
In order to leverage Aston Martin’s rich history, Stroll wished to paint his cars British Racing Green to mirror the Aston Martins of years gone by, but also to reflect the team’s own British F1 heritage having been based at Silverstone since its inception as Jordan Grand Prix in 1990.
This left no room for the all-pink livery that was part of the deal for BWT to be the team’s title sponsor from 2017, and with Aston Martin’s coffers already full to bursting with one of the world’s richest men at the helm, BWT were gone.
However, rumours suggest that BWT aren’t quite done with Formula 1 just yet and that they are looking for another team to hook up with.
The most likely candidates are the title-sponsorless Williams and the ever-strapped-for-cash Haas (who’ve had to tolerate new driver Nikita Mazepin’s various on and off-track misdemeanours and the negative publicity that goes with it, such is their apparent need for funding).
So when Williams appeared for their first outing of 2021 at Silverstone in an interim/plain black/plain dark blue livery, it poured fuel on speculation that a deal is about to be done for BWT to become title sponsor of the team and the FW43B to don a striking pink livery.
In Haas though, Williams have stiff competition. Rich Energy – pretend manufacturer of pretend energy drinks with a pretend entrepreneur William Storey in charge – found themselves with exactly the same options two years ago and for whatever reason (probably money/results) they plumped for Haas.
Something else that is likely to work in Haas’ favour is that BWT are Austrian, and the name Schumacher carries a great deal of weight in that part of the world.
However, alongside Mick Schumacher for 2021 they also have Nikita Mazepin who brings with him a lot of negative press. Does being connected with Schumacher outweigh the flak they’ll inevitably get for being associated with Mazepin?
If not then I might need to prepare myself to reskin the Wi77iams website in various shades of pink!
If it puts more money into Williams development fund and in turn gives them a better chance of competing in the near future, then I’m all for it!