The wheels might fall off the Renault's Formula One team after the global economic meltdown forced Dutch banking conglomerate ING to pull its sponsorship.
It follows the shock of Honda putting its F1 team up for sale after Subaru and Suzuki were forced by money worries to withdraw from the World Rally Championship.
Says ING: "In light of the recently announced cost reduction programme, ING will not to renew the three-year sponsorship contract with Renault F1 and to end its presence in F1 beyond the 2009 season.
"ING's participation in Formula 1 was the company's first global sponsorship project aimed at delivering revenue and raising the global brand awareness, particularly in ING's key growth markets.
"Over the past two years, ING has successfully achieved its objectives for the F1 sponsorship, raising its overall global brand awareness by 16% (March 07 vs November 08).
"F1 remains a powerful business driver even in a difficult economic climate. ING has enjoyed the relationship with Renault F1 and will continue to work closely with the team during the final year of the partnership."
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