Alfa Romeo haven’t received expected Chinese sponsorships despite Zhou Guanyu’s $30.6 Million backing
Despite signing the first Chinese F1 driver Guanyu Zhou, Alfa Romeo has not received enough Chinese Sponsorship.
Guanyu Zhou is the first Chinese driver to have driven in F1. He brings with him the hopes of being one of the most populated countries and the chance to expand Alfa Romeo’s Chinese market.
But despite Zhou’s inclusion, Chinese investors have not put their money in Alfa Romeo. The expected Chinese money has not backed the team enough to pledge Zhou a seat in F1. Only two Chinese companies are currently on the Alfa Romeo livery.
Alfa Romeo Team Principal says this could be because of Zhou’s lack of results. He said,”It’s not enough for Chinese companies that a compatriot is in Formula 1. They only work with you if the performance is right.”
F1 is not the most watched sport in China. Yet, the Chinese Grand Prix has been an Asian crowd Magnet for F1 since 2004. But since 2019, China has not been able to host a race due to CoVid-19 restrictions in the country.
However, F1 has extended the contract of the Chinese Grand Prix by three years till 2025. And there will be another race in China added to the F1 calendar by 2024. This could bring some more opportunities in the future.
Will Zhou Guanyu race with Alfa Romeo in 2023
Zhou Guanyu is the only rookie driver in the 2022 F1 grid. He graduated to F1 after finishing 3rd in the F2 championship in 2021.
Currently, the Chinese driver stands 17th in the championship with 5 points. He had an impressive start to the season, scoring points in his first ever F1 race in Bahrain.
But heading into the F1 summer break, Zhou managed to score points in only 1 of the other 13 races. And the string of poor performances has been scrutinised by his team
Alfa Romeo has not yet released their driver line-up for the 2023 season. Zhou has got a one-year deal with the Alfa Romeo expiring at the end of the season.