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Formula 1 Mercedes must make a U-turn on a morally bankrupt “Glenfell” sponsorship deal

The most important thing the F1 team wants to avoid is that one of its cars crashes. But Mercedes could just break the entire British brand — or would do so unless it turns fast.

Last week, Mercedes Formula One announced that it had signed a sponsorship agreement with the Irish company Kingspan. Welcome to the team! An exciting partnership for these two final races of the 2021 season.

And Kingspan got the money to spend. Last year it reported a trading profit of over € 500 million.

But as everyone knows who is paying any attention to the hearing of the Grenfell Tower fire (pictured), which killed 72 people, it’s a building materials company with toxic records.

But as everyone knows who is paying any attention to the hearing of the Grenfell Tower fire, which killed 72 people, it is a building materials company with toxic records.

Not only was some of its flammable coatings installed in the tower, but its executives were revealed under cross-examination that they were unscrupulous and dishonest in the claims they made for product safety. it was done.

It’s not surprising that Glenfell United, representing the victim’s family, declared Mercedes’ decision to put the Kingspan logo on Lewis Hamilton’s car nose as “really shocking.” (Hamilton himself, who previously attached Glenfell’s hashtag Justice to a social media statement, simply observed that he was not involved in the sponsorship decision.)

It's not surprising that Glenfell United, representing the victim's family, has declared Mercedes' decision to put the Kingspan logo on Lewis Hamilton's car nose.

It’s not surprising that Glenfell United, representing the victim’s family, has declared Mercedes’ decision to put the Kingspan logo on Lewis Hamilton’s car nose.

Rigging

But it would be a shock to Mercedes that Housing and Community Secretary Michael Gove issued an open letter condemning the sponsorship deal.

After that, the following document came out from his department. [involved in the Grenfell cladding scandal] Awarded salary packages and bonuses to directors worth £ 335m [but] In situations where taxpayers have provided £ 5.1 billion through the Building Safety Fund and leaseholders are facing significant costs, these are apparently completely unacceptable to repair historic fire safety flaws. There is no evidence that the company has contributed.

And what was the first reaction of Toto Wolff, the Austrian boss of the Mercedes F1? Before signing the deal, he claimed that his team was “deeply involved with Kingspan to understand what role their product played in what happened at Glenfell.” Explained that “only a small part of their products were used without their knowledge” part of the system that did not comply with building regulations.

But the issue of an open letter condemning the sponsorship deal by housing and community secretary Michael Gove would have shocked Mercedes.

But the issue of an open letter condemning the sponsorship deal by housing and community secretary Michael Gove would have shocked Mercedes.

As Glenfell United argued in an open letter to Mr. Wolf, “just ask Kingspan to explain their involvement, and in essence, you can ask them to mark their homework. This is the system that led to Glenfell in the first place. “

It is true that most of the tower’s deadly flammable dressings were supplied by another company, Celotex. However, it was Kingspan who pioneered the use of flammable foam-based cladding in skyscrapers, mass-marketing products that catastrophically failed one of their own fire safety checks.

In-house documents revealed at the hearing recorded that the insulation was “burning on its own” and “raging inferno” even after the flames were extinguished. Kingspan approved the investigation, so he kept the test results secret and continued to sell the product for use in skyscrapers.

You may be wondering why Mercedes wants to put the Kingspan logo (pictured) on its car, no matter how much sponsorship it has.

You may be wondering why Mercedes wants to put the Kingspan logo (pictured) on its car, no matter how much sponsorship it has.

Even after Glenfell’s horror, Kingspan tried to convince parliamentarians and ministers that its form cladding was safer than any other country. It is not flammable, but it has low thermal efficiency. These tests were equipped to make rock wool products look more dangerous. Or Richard Millett, an adviser to Grenfell Inquiry, told it to Adrian Pargeter, Kingspan’s production manager, who had actually been promoted since the fire. To ensure that science has been transformed for financial gain … Did you think the aftermath of the Glenfell fire was like a commercial opportunity? “

You may be wondering why Mercedes wants to put the Kingspan logo on its car, no matter how much sponsorship it has. The reasons are as follows: The Kingspan website declares its mission is to accelerate Net Zero. [carbon] Future emissions centered on the well-being of people and the planet. “

In fact, the main reason for Glenfell’s cladding was to comply with new building codes that require high-rise blocks to reduce fossil fuel combustion by making the structure more “thermally efficient”.

Before signing the deal, Toto Wolff (pictured) claims that his team was

Before signing the deal, Toto Wolff (pictured) claims that his team was “deeply involved with Kingspan to understand what their product played in what happened at Glenfell.” Did.

strange

However, given the way Kingspan played the system, the effects of such cladding (for example, by refusing to accept the product’s suitability for skyscrapers, by threatening building regulators in proceedings. ), To incinerate a large number of humans in London, which was not to save the world from global warming, but to contribute.

So, it may seem strange, but Mercedes F1 is aware of the criticism of the motorsport business, which is now based on burning large amounts of despised fossil fuels, and the Kingspan brand’s “net zero emissions.” I easily saw “the mission to accelerate”. Greenwash the image.

But even Toto Wolff seems to have noticed that he is at risk of burning his brand. When asked yesterday whether to cancel the sponsorship agreement with Kingspan, the Mercedes F1 boss said: We just want to do the right thing in good faith. “

Dignity! Mercedes would not be able to carry out such a moral bankruptcy operation if Mr. Wolf had a hard time initiating a “dialogue” with the Glenfell family in advance rather than accepting Kingspan’s words. It would have been. You need to make a U-turn at high speed.

Formula 1 Mercedes must make a U-turn on a morally bankrupt “Glenfell” sponsorship deal

SourceFormula 1 Mercedes must make a U-turn on a morally bankrupt “Glenfell” sponsorship deal

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