The Force India Formula 1 team has signed a season-long deal with major flip-flop manufacturer Havaianas to sponsor its halo cockpit protection device.
Earlier this month McLaren became the first team to poke fun at the similarities between the halo and the upper strap of a flip-flop by agreeing a Gandys sponsorship deal for this weekend’s season-opening Australian Grand Prix.
Now Force India has revealed a modified halo design to incorporate Havaianas, one of the world’s biggest flip-flops brands, at several races across the 2018 season.
Force India COO Otmar Szafnauer, COO of Force India: “We are delighted to bring Havaianas into Formula 1. Where better than the halo to carry the famous Havaianas logo?
“We have always been an adventurous team with our marketing efforts, and after introducing the pink livery in 2017 we hope this partnership will appeal to all fun-loving Formula 1 fans in 2018.”
Havaianas branding will appear at the car at “several” European grands prix this season and “most significantly” at the Brazilian Grand Prix, the home race for Havaianas’ parent company Alpargatas.
Marcio Utsch, CEO of Alpargatas, said it was “huge news for Havaianas” and was inspired by fans comparing the controversial halo with flip-flops over the winter.
“At Havaianas, we pride ourselves on listening to the fans of our brand and over the last few months we have seen more and more people associating our flips-flops with the new halo across social media,” he added.
“Together with Force India we have come up with an eye-catching design on the car’s halo, which was the logical place to locate our flip-flop strap.”