What we fail to see amidst all this hype of our country actually owning an F1 team (statements : numerous time Najib insisted that it is an investment by Lotus/Proton instead. truth : funding still comes from the Malaysian taxpayers), is that Petronas is still a corporation regardless of it being a state owned corporation. Thus with it comes the expectation of being sponsors for the Lotus F1. A reasonable expectation I thought.
Then... comes along Michael Schumacher. My favourite sportsmen, the most perfect guy that existed in my mind from the age of 7 till 12. I worshipped him once, and don't worry I have come to my senses now. My support for teams has always been moving with him. If he's with Renault, I'll support Renault. If he's with Ferrari, my never-ending loyalty with Ferrari that seems to end now marked by his departure is the reason why I got bullied everyday in sekolah agama by Fikril Afiq.
When Schumi signed with Mercedes, everything seems to make better sense. Reality check; Petronas maybe one of the companies in Fortune 500 and every Malaysian citizen has heard of it but in Europe all you can hear is crickets unless you're one of the technical crews for any F1 team. They need to penetrate the world's market and with the automative industry, branding is everything. For Petronas to be associated with Mercedes and 7 time world champion Michael Schumacher is a huge jump from the unknowns of BMW Sauber and definitely, an upper hand in terms of branding compared to Malaysia owned Lotus F1.
Of course the only way that this could go bad for Petronas is if Lotus were to score more points than Mercedes, which is very much unlikely. Regardless of that, the association with those 2 big names will definitely be in the best interest of Petronas, especially in promoting it's lubricant. Yes people, LUBRICANTS.
I shall be very optimistic now, and hope for only great things to come for Michael Schumacher and the Lotus F1 team. I hope that Petronas will organize contests that allows its participants to meet Michael Schumacher and with that, I wish for a little bit of luck (prediction : changing petrol usage from Shell to Petronas must be one of the criteria for the contest. Haha) .I hope that my final examinations will not clash with the date of the race so that for the first time in my whole life, I can actually watch my favourite game.
And please, cut Petronas some slack. It's nothing personal, it's just business.