McLaren 'lose £155m Johnnie Walker sponsorship deal'

Jensen Button of McLaren drives during a practise session for the Indian Formula One Grand Prix on October 26, 2013
McLaren have lost out on £155m in sponsorship money after Bernie Ecclestone stepped in to agree a deal between F1 and Johnnie Walker, according to reports.

McLaren have reportedly lost out on a staggering £155m in sponsorship money after Bernie Ecclestone agreed a deal with the owners of Johnnie Walker whiskey.

According to The Mirror, the F1 supremo sealed an agreement with Diageo whereby Johnnie Walker will become the sport's official whiskey, but the deal means that the Woking-based constructor has lost a potential title sponsor.

The former champions have been searching for a new main commercial partner since the end of their deal with Vodafone 18 months ago.

News of the agreement with Johnnie Walker comes after Hugo Boss recently ended its lengthy association with McLaren to join up with Mercedes.

McLaren, who are currently fifth in the constructors' rankings, have failed to win a Grand Prix since November 2012.

Nico Hulkenberg of Germany and Sauber F1 walks in the paddock before the Belgian Grand Prix at Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps on August 25, 2013
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