SBD/20/Sponsorships Advertising Marketing

GOODYEAR BURNS RUBBER OUT OF FORMULA ONE SPONSORSHIP

          OH-based Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. yesterday "decided
     to pull out of Formula One racing" after the '98 season,
     according to David Adams of the AKRON BEACON JOURNAL.  The
     decision, which ends Goodyear's 33-year history with the
     sport, is a "sharp break from the company's strategy to use
     Formula One racing as a marketing vehicle to reach millions
     of consumers overseas."  Goodyear spokesperson Chris Aked
     said that circuit rule changes will mean higher tire
     development costs and that overall the "return on the
     investment was no longer worth it."  Adams reports that
     Goodyear's decision to pull out of Formula One "comes after
     this year's success by competitor Bridgestone Corp."  Adams:
     "Until Bridgestone entered Formula One this season ...
     Goodyear had dominated the sport."  Adams adds that Goodyear
     will continue to be a main sponsor of the NASCAR circuit, as
     in April, the company signed a three-year deal to be the
     sole tire supplier to NASCAR drivers (AKRON BEACON JOURNAL,
     11/20).  The FINANCIAL TIMES reports that Groupe Michelin of
     France and Italy's Pirelli tires "are known to have been
     studying the possibility of rejoining" Formula One, even
     before Goodyear's decision (FINANCIAL TIMES, 11/20). 

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Formula One, NASCAR

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