The Melbourne Grand Prix is around the corner, the new Formula 1 cars have all been seen at testing and soon we’ll see our first race of the year. McLaren Honda are certainly looking forward to a better year than 2015. It wasn’t so long ago they had a championship winning car and with two world championship winning drivers, the combination should be right.

McLaren Honda welcome a new sponsor this year, Chandon. Chandon is very well known and we had a few questions for the new McLaren Honda partner. We spoke with Ashley Powell, Marketing & Business Development Director, Chandon.

2016 McLaren Honda MP4-31 Side

McLaren Honda is a very successful team and runs two world champion drivers, how will this partnership benefit Chandon and the branding for a beverage company?

Chandon was born out of the spirit of open-mindedness within a search for new horizons. As one of the most successful teams in Formula 1 history, McLaren meets Chandon, with the same boundless conquering spirit. The partnership is a long-term collaboration that will bring Chandon’s sparkling attitude to the famous McLaren-Honda Formula 1™ team in an exciting celebration of innovation.

Fernando Alonso & Jenson Button Close Up Portrait
Ron Dennis has always been known to create close partnerships with sponsors whereby products and services are also acquired, how is Chandon partnering with McLaren Honda and what does it look like on a race day?

Chandon and McLaren Honda will be celebrating their official partnership throughout the week leading up the Formula 1™ Rolex Australian Grand Prix, as well as on the day of the race, at various venues across Melbourne. The McLaren Honda team are also launching a brand new car which will be adorning the Chandon logo, as will the drivers’ jumpsuits. We can’t wait to inject some extra spark into the Australian Grand Prix festivities. It’s our first race for the season and Australia will set the standard high for other moments.

Being a sponsor of the McLaren Honda team now, is it a goal in the future to have Chandon on the podium as the official F1 sparkling wine?

Though that would be wonderful, it’s not in our current plans to be the official sparkling wine of the F1.

1065459_Chandon Brut Rose 750ml
In the past we have seen F1 sponsorships reflect on the products of the sponsor, will we see a Chandon/McLaren Honda bottle on shelves this year?

You may see a few pop up on social media as part of our PR activities, but we won’t have any promotional bottles available for sale. You will however notice a very strong McLaren Honda presence on the Chandon shelves in your local bottle stores.

In the Chandon range, if you could pick a product that represents a person, which would it be for Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button, and why?

I would have to say the Chandon Blanc de Noirs 2007 and the Chandon Vintage Brut 2010. These vintages signify the years in which Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso both joined the McLaren Honda F1 Team, respectively.