Re-inventing history

The French Grand Prix is this year celebrating 100 years of Grand Prix racing, but there is a slight problem with the French law. Students of recent French history will know that the country demolished its constant supply of Formula 1 drivers back in 1993 with the introduction of the Loi Evin, which banned all advertising of tobacco and alcohol products in France. The result of this was that Marlboro, Camel and Gitanes were stopped from supporting young racing drivers and several generations of Frenchmen have since gone to waste as Elf cannot support everyone, particularly since the company was floated on the stock exchange and has to justify such activities to its shareholders.

The anti-tobacco lobby is the most powerful there is, ironic given the amount of smoking that goes on in France, and since 2003 motor racing magazines have had to blur all images of tobacco branding on F1 cars.

The historic race at Magny-Cours has not escaped the ban and as a result all JPS branding on the old Lotuses has to be removed, along with Marlboro on the old McLarens.

Sad, but true.

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