Action amongst the Williams sponsors

WILLIAMS's sponsor Compaq has gained clearance from the European Commission for the takeover of the firm by Hewlett-Packard. The companies still face a further competition investigation in America and have still to win over the shareholders of HP who are opposed to the deal, which would see Compaq being swallowed up.

But while the sponsorship from Compaq may be at risk in the very long term it is unlikely given current performance that Williams will struggle to find a replacement if that becomes necessary. The team has just announced another deal which will bring it more revenue without space being needed on the cars. The team has struck a three-year deal with the toy manufacturer Lego. The aim is for the company to produce a detailed model of the latest F1 car to be launched in time for Christmas 2002. The intention is for the models to be both fun and educational, offering children a view of the complexities in F1.

Lego may be child's play but the design of the toys is not. Lego is assisted in work by an entire department at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Media Laboratory.

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