Tobaco in Australia
The announcement made during last year's Italian Grand Prix by Ferrari's management that they had agreed terms with Philip Morris International to not only extend their commercial partnership by five years, but also to increase its budgetary extent to record levels (even by Formula One's extravagant standards), simply shocked the Monza paddock.
Not only was the deal in breach of a September 11, 2001 agreement struck voluntarily between the four tobacco companies then in the sport (British American Tobacco, Japan Tobacco, Gallahers and said PMI) but also went against an earlier Formula One decree banning all cigarette sponsorships from 31 October 2006.
That decree was in line with a European Union plan to ban advertising of the addictive leaf from that date onwards, but the date was later advanced to 31 July 2005 and policed by the EU in rather half-hearted fashion from the following day. The change was interpreted by the FIA, the sport's controlling body, as being in breach of its own timing schedule, and all regulatory restrictions on tobacco sponsorship were subsequently removed from F1's books.