Alfa Romeo have announced a brand-new title partner for 2023, in a move that will likely spell the end of Robert Kubica’s Formula 1 career.
The Hinwil-based team have confirmed that online gambling and casino company Stake, will be their title partner for the upcoming season and presumably for the foreseeable future, with the team to be officially known as the Alfa Romeo F1 Team Stake.
Their deal with Stake has meant that former title partner Orlen have had to move on, with the Polish petrol retailer having switched to AlphaTauri as a principal partner.
Sauber managing director and team representative Alessandro Alunni Bravi is very pleased to welcome the gambling company into the Swiss team, in what he labelled as “the start of a new era”.
“We welcome Stake as a new co-title partner for the team in what represents the start of a new era for us both,” Alunni Bravi said.
“F1 has seen a huge increase in interest over the last few years and the arrival of brands such as Stake are representative of the massive exposure our sport can offer.
“We are excited to join such a portfolio of sports and entertainment brands and we’re looking forward to the activation programme that Stake will unveil for our fans.”
Whilst Orlen have found a new home for the upcoming season, it appears that Robert Kubica won’t be moving to the Faenza-based team with his sponsor.
It looks like his appearance in FP1 at the 2022 season finale in Abu Dhabi will be his last appearance in Formula 1, with the Polish driver having told Autosport at the time that he wasn’t sure what Orlen’s plans were for this season.
“I don’t know, I don’t want to speak for the others. I’m not dealing with the budgets, I’m not in their boat,” Kubica told Autosport.
“So of course, as I say, I have to take care of my duties, of my stuff, and this is my priority.
“Probably, then I will talk with the parties, whatever it will be. If it’s this team or a different team, to see if I can be involved, if I can be useful, because I also don’t want to be here if I’m not useful.”
Kubica also added after his last FP1 appearance that he was “comfortable” if it was his final session at the pinnacle of motorsport, with the incredible Pole having proven to “never say never”.
“I’m comfortable,” he said.
“In the end, I have been always very realistic. Let’s be honest. At 38 it’s not that you would be surprised if you will not get a drive anymore. There’s too many ifs, so let’s wait and see and react to it.
“I think my story showed never say never, of course. To be honest, the only reason I’m still here is that I get the chance to drive sometimes, and for sure the day I will not get even any car driving, probably it will be the end.”