Virgin may take over Brawn GP name

Sir Richard Branson says his Virgin Group could take over the name and corporate identity of the Brawn GP team within weeks, following the announcement of a sponsorship deal at the Australian Grand Prix

Virgin may take over Brawn GP name

Branson flew to Melbourne after agreeing a preliminary sponsorship tie-up with the Brackley-based outfit, and he has revealed that he is looking at taking on an even greater involvement than he currently has with the squad.

"We've thrown something together in a very quick period of time," said Branson. "We signed it four hours before I got on the plane, and I think all of us would like to see it, in a very short period of time, developing into a more complete relationship - even in the next three or four weeks. But we will see."

Branson said that a decision will be taken soon about how much more involved his Virgin Group will be with the team - and it is possible he could take over the title sponsorship and even name of the team within two or three races.

"If it [more financial input] is going to increase, it would happen over the next three or four weeks - we would not wait until next year if we are to do something with this team on a long term basis," he explained.

When asked if it was possible Virgin could take over the name of the team, Branson said: "It is certainly a possibility. But we will see what happens over the next three or four weeks.

"The team does not want to waste the name of the team on something that is not promoting anything, and everybody knows it has a great engineer so the team doesn't need for it be called after an engineer. That may well change, but we will see what happens."

He added: "I think all of us need time. First of all they have had to save the team; they have had to get the racing going.

"We are hoping that we will have a proper marriage quite soon - but we are a Virgin bride, and they may find that someone comes in and offers them something even better before this bride marries up with them!

"But it is more likely than not that we will get something sorted in the next few weeks."

A name change beyond just making Virgin title sponsors for Brawn GP, which has been classified as a new team, would require the unanimous support of all rival outfits.

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