BlackBerry makes its Formula 1 racing debut!

BlackBerry Mercedes AMG Petronas
By Kevin Michaluk on 18 Mar 2013 02:26 pm EDT
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BlackBerry made its racing debut in Formula 1 this weekend at the first event of the 2013 season, the Australian Grand Prix. The announcement came just a few weeks ago that BlackBerry is now the Mobile Computing Partner of the Mercedes AMG Petronas team and there has been no shortage of buzz thanks to the timely BlackBerry Z10 launch around the world. With "Built to Keep You Moving" as the marketing slogan of BlackBerry 10, the fit between BlackBerry and F1 couldn't be better IMO. I have been a fan of both F1 and BlackBerry for years, so for me it really represents two passions colliding. Simply awesome.

Thorsten Heins in the pits

BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins and a few other members of #TEAMBLACKBERRY were on hand in Melbourne to take in the racing action. Knowing that one of Thorsten Heins' hobbies is Formula 1 simulations, while watching the race I couldn't help but wonder if he was in on the decision to put Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg on a two stop strategy while the rest of the field ran three stops. The gamble almost paid off - Hamilton was in good position to fight for the win, but ultimately finished fifth after having to pull in for a third tire change.

Overall it was still a strong showing for Mercedes and a great display of BlackBerry branding. Following twitter while the race was live, tons of people commented on just how well the BlackBerry logo is positioned on the Mercedes car and all of the team gear (I **need** to get myself a pair of the BlackBerry-branded headphones that Ross Brawn and team members are wearing!). 

Ross Brawn wearing BlackBerry headphones

To celebrate their presence in F1, BlackBerry has fired up a BlackBerry & Mercedes micro site on BlackBerry.com and is hard at work on both the technical and marketing sides of it all - you know there will be plenty of goodies and exclusive content coming throughout the season. To kick things off, BlackBerry has posted up a few videos to give us a behind-the-scenes look at the partnership as well as some interviews with the drivers. 

F1 Talk in CrackBerry's Forums

In true CrackBerry fashion we're getting in on the action as well and have fired up a brand new Team BlackBerry / Mercedes F1 forum. In the forum it's all about Team BlackBerry racing. From races to sightings to media events - we'll keep that bad boy choc-full of F1 awesomeness. 

Visit the BlackBerry & Mercedes F1 Site
More Team BlackBerry F1 Talk in CrackBerry's Forums

Reader comments

BlackBerry makes its Formula 1 racing debut!

47 Comments

I think internationally this will be a great marketing strategy for them...now if they could sponsor a car for a NASCAR Race to celebrate the US Launch!

Glad to see Blackberry aligning them with the pinnacle of motorsports. These are good associations. Hope they continue to make brilliant products, I welcome the pressure that blackberry puts on other innovative mobile ecosystems.

i think i,ll buy a little Mercedes,then put bb logos all over it .the color scheme is awesum,nice to see thorstie relaxed and having a good time.

One day soon I think we'll all see Kevin on a webcast sporting a BlackBerry Racing headset.
Hopefully, nudge nudge wink wink, we'll also see a contest with a headset as the give away. (hint hint, nudge nudge, wink wink, say nah more)

Not showing off here (much) but I posted about this in the forums a few weeks ago. With Lewis's mega exposure, this partnership is always going to be a winner. It helps massively that Mercedes seem to have built a half decent car this year as well

Thorsten, I tip my hat to you

Posted via CB10

Hey Kev ! I believe you can use your influence with BB to sell some of those Mercedes/BlackBerry articles ( T shirt. jackets , headphones! ) in your CrackBerry store ! That will be neat and good for your business.
Oh . I don't think Thorsten had anything to do with the lame performance . More like Hamilton flatspotting his tires and screwing up Mercedes strategy
Eagerly waiting for the Malaysian race this weekend

I Agree Team Merchandise would sell well !(Headphones!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

I am also hoping that there will be some F1 Parties for Blackberry Users !!! ..Would be finally nice to have an excuse to attend one :)

So upset that I had a headache that night and fell asleep before the race began. Even more upset that I forgot to set the PVR for either the original race broadcast or the replay :(

Downloaded the race when I got home last night and will watch it when I get home tonight. Good showing for BlackBerry and Mercedes, wish Rosberg hadn't suffered mechanical/electrical issues causing him to retire from the race. Looking forward to this weekends race in Malaysia. On a sidenote, IndyCar starts this weekend as well :) good birthday weekend for me filled with all sorts of racing :D

Yes, awesome sponsorship. I can't find the stats but F1 has proven to be one of the absolute best advert platforms in the world...well done.

Posted via CB10

Now as a Canadian I would like to see them sponsor a Canadian driver in IZod Indy and I would also like to see them hit Nascar because even though as a series it has limited reach outside of North America, Nascar fans are very crazy about supporting their drivers. I do enjoy F1 though and now I have a new team to cheer for.

Awesome partnership, love F1 and the BlackBerry branding looks great. Go team BlackBerry!
When are the headphones going to be available?

They should make a BlackBerry F1 edition device. With everyone getting one also receiving a free ticket to visit a race in Monaco. That would be something.

It was just great seeing the BlackBerry logo and name so prominently displayed on these awesome F1 machines...great partnership guys - well done!!!

Posted via CB10

I thought it was funny when they zoomed in on Christian Horner's BlackBerry when he was sitting at his console....

I'll be doing a trip from NYC to Montreal this June for the Canadian Grand Prix. I'm looking forward to see this car in person, although I'll be rooting for Fernando Alonso and his Ferrari team :D

I love this partnership, been a Lewis Hamilton fan since he joined the sport at Mclaren and a massive F1 fan for a long time. Great to see partnerships like this- will help make Blackberry more 'current', add the fact Mercedes have a better car and exposure wil be very good- Love it!

Is this more of satisfying the ego of a corporate CEO by putting his brand on an F1 car or a smart marketing strategy? Time will tell, but the fact the phone is called a "Z10" more of a car moniker than a electronic's gadget, seems to me, its more of a reason to fulfill a childhood dream than smart marketing.

I am a huge F1 fan! Way to go BlackBerry. Now just need a native app that doesn't cost more then my Z10.

Posted via CB10

That is a great looking car, well done BB. Drawn straight to the BB logo, its in the best position and brilliant marketing. All the best for Mercedez, the better they perform the better it is for BB.

I'd like to see a silver BlackBerry or even one sponsored by F1 that has all the logos of team Mercedes. That phone would look ridiculously sexy!

its about time...this is another milestone not just for the company, but for each and everyone of us who loves Blackberry! Keep Moving! and all the best to Mercedes.

I'd like to see BlackBerry think a little more local, especially in Western Canada. I just happen to have a car that does all the Show and Shines in Southern Alberta and I'd be happy to carry the BlackBerry logo with me ;)