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F1 NEWS 

Petrobras keen on future F1 return

Brazilian oil company Petrobras is keen to remain involved in Formula One in the future, despite deciding against a sponsorship deal with Honda this season.

Petrobras was set to switch its backing from the Williams team to Honda for 2009, but the latter manufacturer's decision to pull out of F1 meant that deal will not go ahead.

However Petrobras says it is still open to future opportunities in F1 as it believes the sport provides a valuable development opportunity.

"Petrobras clarifies that it is still interested in participating in Formula One," said a statement.

"The interest in partnering with a team remains, as long as it is possible to develop and provide high-quality and high-tech Petrobras fuels and lubricants.

"The purpose of Petrobras' Motor Sports Programme is to seek to provide company consumers with benefits, using auto racing as a product development lab. In this performance line, on account of its ties with technological progress, Formula One has always had a singular role."

Petrobras has also reiterated that it is not currently involved with Honda should efforts to keep the team alive succeed, and has again dismissed reports that it would provide personal sponsorship to potential Honda driver Bruno Senna.

"The company clarifies it does not have an agreement signed with Honda, or with a future team yet to be formed, for the 2009 Formula One season," it said.

"It also reiterates that pursuant to the guidelines set forth by the Petrobras Motor Sport Programme, it does not endorse individual drivers."

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