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SBD Global/November 12, 2012/Marketing and Sponsorship

Coca-Cola Could Enter F1 Sponsorship With Energy Drink Brand, Ecclestone Says

F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone said that if Coca-Cola enters F1 as a sponsor, it "would do so with one of its energy drink brands," according to F1SA.com. It was reported earlier this year that Coke could be eying F1. Sources said that McLaren could "ultimately win the deal," replacing the British team's flagging title backer Vodafone. Asked about the rumors, Ecclestone said: "The president of Coca-Cola is a very good friend of mine, but the head of marketing has always said he didn't think Formula One was good for them." Ecclestone admitted that "if they do come in, I think they will come in with one of their energy drink brands, not Coke itself." Coca-Cola's leading energy drink brand is Relentless. Ecclestone, however, warned: "You wouldn't want to take Red Bull on" (F1SA.com, 11/9).
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