RaceFans image: How Ferrari could look without Mission Winnow logos

Ferrari to remove Mission Winnow logos from car for Australian Grand Prix

2019 F1 season

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Ferrari will remove the logos of tobacco producer Philip Morris International’s Mission Winnow initiative from its car before the first race of the 2019 F1 season.

Ferrari CEO Louis Camilleri said at the Geneva International Motor Show the Mission Winnow logos will not appear on the car in Melbourne.

The Mission Winnow slogan and logo first appeared on the team’s car at the Japanese Grand Prix last year. They featured prominently on its new SF90 throughout pre-season testing.

PMI has repeatedly denied a link between Mission Winnow and promotion of it tobacco products, which could violate laws forbidding cigarette advertising. However public health bodies in Australia, where next week’s season-opening race will be held, confirmed last month they are looking into the legality of PMI’s branding on the Ferrari.

Ferrari has already removed Mission Winnow from its official team name according to the latest entry list published by the FIA. The team has reverted to the name ‘Scuderia Ferrari’ it raced as last year, having originally entered the 2019 championship as ‘Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow’ and referred to itself using that name until the conclusion of last week’s test.

Start, Estoril,. 1995
How tobacco brands are returning to F1 by the back door
Under the F1 regulations, teams must give the FIA seven days’ notice of any changes to their entry. Therefore Ferrari has the option of reverting to the name Scuderia Ferrari Mission Winnow in time for the Bahrain Grand Prix if it chooses to.

One other team, McLaren, also features a slogan connected to a tobacco brand on its car. The MCL34 carries the slogan “A Better Tomorrow” as part of a sponsorship deal with British American Tobacco. However the team’s name does not refer to its BAT sponsors.

Ferrari has only confirmed the change for the first race of the season in Australia. The team said its livery will feature “a surprise for the fans instead”.

Video: Why Ferrari is removing Mission Winnow from its car

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Main image: Photograph by XPB Images; Artwrking by Dreamfly

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Author information

Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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33 comments on “Ferrari to remove Mission Winnow logos from car for Australian Grand Prix”

  1. Did you Photoshop out the logos on the top image, Keith, or did they actually run that logo-free version in testing?

    1. I just noticed that the ‘K’ in Kaspersky and the ‘V’ in V-Power and the logo of AMD still hide a white chevron like the PMI infamous cigarette logo.
      @phylyp

      1. @coldfly – It’s no wonder I’ve been twitching ever since I saw that picture :)

        (Oh wait, that’s probably just my lifelong caffeine consumption)

      2. You missed the one on the Shell logo on the sidepod!
        @coldfly

        1. I just noticed the shape of their airbox…..

      3. Dang – good call! I’m just here soaking it in and I don’t even realize it.

      4. This just in, Ferrari team changes official entry name to ‘Scuderia Verrari’

        1. Black bit around the number on the engine cover. What happens if Seb makes a ‘V’ for victory symbol instead of his waggly finger thing? This could all get fun.

          If anyone gets with earshot of a live F1 broadcast, say one of us is famous or rich enough to be on the grid walk, please can someone yell “MARLBORO!’ at the top of their lungs and watch Brundle scurry away from them very quickly.

  2. Adam (@rocketpanda)
    5th March 2019, 14:01

    That car’s going to look weirdly blank without them now.

    That said it was ridiculous, so goodbye!

  3. Under the F1 regulations, teams must give the FIA seven days’ notice of any changes to their entry. Therefore Ferrari has the option of reverting to the name Scuderia Ferrario Mission Winnow in time for the Bahrain Grand Prix if it chooses to.

    I thought this required a vote from some kind of body as what Alfa Romeo (ex Sauber) and Racing Point (Force India) had to go through. Or does ‘Ferrario’ also have some kind of ‘otev’ (or whatever you call the opposite of a ‘veto’)?

    1. Maybe a bit of political expediency on the part of the FIA to avoid any negative press at the Australian GP?

    2. I think that’s because it’s a completely different name. Ferrari only drops the sponsor in their name.

    3. Maybe it’s a case of the fact that they can give notice a couple of days before Australia but it wouldn’t go through until after the race, but it would still be before the season starts so wouldn’t be an in-season change of name? Convoluted F1 regulations at it’s finest.

    4. @coldfly A vote is required for a “core” name change, but given that it’s illegal for the team to run that name, anyone voting against straightforward reversion would potentially be getting visited by lawyers for unfair restraint of trade at minimum.

      I believe e-votes have to have a certain timeframe to ensure people get a fair chance to vote, so if this requires an e-vote (which I think it does, simply due to the time factor), the time needed for the vote to go through, not merely the 7 days from assent to the start of the weekend, would have to be considered.

      (The opposite of a veto is an executive vote, by the way).

  4. Good, I live in Australia. tabacco smoking is going down heaps in Australia ( though the government still makes a fortune due to taxes going higher on tobacco sales as usage goes down….) the tabacco companies can go take a hike…. How many lives have they ruined?

    1. How many lives have they ruined?

      Somebody dies of smoking every six seconds, but it might ruin the life of their direct family as well.
      So let’s just call it an even 1 ruined life per second.

    2. Duncan Snowden
      5th March 2019, 17:30

      It’s not, you know. The percentage Australians who smoke is higher than both the United States and Canada. In 2017 the number of smokers in Australia actually increased. It doesn’t represent a statistically-significant rise (24,000 on top of around 2.4 million), but it is a levelling off, despite the world’s highest prices, plain packaging, and a total ban on advertising. And it bucks the global trend of accelerating decline.

      I’m sure the fact that Australia is one of the few countries in the world where nicotine itself is completely prohibited, giving smokers no voluntary or pleasurable alternative, has nothing to do with it, right?

      (I’m not a smoker, never have been. Don’t even drink either, for what that’s worth. And yes, the tobacco companies covered up the dangers for years. But the lies promulgated by authoritarian prohibitionists, often at the behest of the pharmaceutical industry, are almost as egregious. Two wrongs don’t make a right.)

      1. The increase in smoking icould be due (ironically) to our stagnant wages growth increasing lower-class (as the gap widens).

        The lucky country no more. The pollies are finally succeeding in destroying our country.

  5. joe pineapples
    5th March 2019, 15:36

    What a drag for them.

    1. Mission Winnow went up in smoke.

  6. I just hope that they redesign the livery somewhat in order to make it look less odd.

  7. PMI should create energy drink shell company and brand it Barcode and having them to occasionally tweet ‘Barcode are faster than Red Bull’.

  8. I wonder what the monetary worth is of the exposure PMI has received for its tobacco products since their car launch from the number of times media outlets have written words to the effect of “PMI denies a link between Mission Winnow and its tobacco products.”

    And now, when they are reporting that Mission Winnow’s logo will disappear because of Philip Morris and its tobacco products.

    And in Melbourne, when they will report on a new livery “surprise for fans”, which of course replaces the Mission Winnow logo which disappeared because of Philip Morris’ tobacco products.

    Because in case you needed the reminder, Philip Morris sells tobacco products.

    It’s a rather cynical game PMI and the Scuderia are playing, isn’t it?

    1. @markzastrow Couldn’t agree more, I suspect they knew when they went into this either way it went they were getting advertising. You could probably argue it being removed from the car has greater value for them, especially if it reappears in Bahrain & China, but disappears again in say Belgium, and the theme stops starts all year long.

    2. Great points, @markzastrow.

      Pretty sure that Ferrari will take this race’s portion of the PMI death money they receive and donate it to a cancer research facility. That the facility in Italy is equipped with a wind tunnel is just a coincidence.

  9. we are all chemical inhalers.. just look up in the sky once in a while ;)

  10. georgeboole (@)
    5th March 2019, 21:12

    So they don’t have a mission to win now?

    Although all this seems to be more of a publicity now than even when that logo appeared. Even negative publixity is publicity sometimes. Otherwise we wouldn’t be talking about it.
    So PM got what they wanted and I m sure they will come back soon on European ground.

    1. @georgeboole No, they don’t have a mission to winnow (which always looked a little odd to me, as it is an agricultural method of separating a grain from its chaff – and usually calling anything in F1 “agricultural” is an insult).

      1. georgeboole (@)
        7th March 2019, 8:06

        @alianora-la-canta I believe some cars could be called some sort of farming machine due to the (lack) of speed ;)

        1. @georgeboole That would indeed be the insult. I particularly remember the time some journalist at F1 Magazine tried calling the 2002 Williams “agricultural-looking” and forgot that Patrick Head was likely to cross paths with him at the first test. Apparently Patrick’s rejoinder was quite loud…

          1. georgeboole (@)
            10th March 2019, 21:57

            @alianora-la-canta can’t remember that particular incident but I m sure it was properly loud back then!

  11. Hopefully they’ll make the morally correct choice of smothering it in alcohol and gambling decals for Australia. Either that or a gigantic Marlboro logo to troll the state and see what happens.

  12. Why is this such a big story? Teams change their sponsors all the time depending on where the race is taking place. How is this case any different?

Comments are closed.