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McLaren F1 team poised for Gulf sponsorship

Lando Norris and the McLaren MCL 35 during the day 5 of Formula 1 testing (Photo by Joan Valls/Urbanandsport/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Formula One Team McLaren looks to have signed up oil giant Gulf as a new sponsor.

McLaren has been searching for a brand to fill the main sponsor role since its contract with Brazilian petrochemicals firm Petronas was cut short in November 2019.

Images have appeared on social media of the McLaren team holding a photoshoot at a Gulf garage which also featured McLaren’s team car with the Gulf logo present on its engine cover.

McLaren’s own social media account posted an image from the photoshoot with the caption ‘Coming soon’, but then deleted the post.

The team had an association with Gulf during its formative years, with the company a sponsor during the 1960s in Formula One and in the Can-Am sportscar championship.

The agreement with Petrobras had been set to run until the end of 2025, but was curtailed due to objections from Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro.

Whilst McLaren retains its long-established in Formula One, it is set to exit road cycling after reportedly deciding not to continue its title sponsorship of the Bahrain UCI World Tour team.

McLaren Group has been significantly impacted by the Covid-19 crisis, with 1,200 jobs cut at its UK base earlier this year.