Virgin Australia has added V8 Supercars to its stable of major sporting sponsorships alongside the Australian Football League (AFL) and National Basketball League (NBL).
The airline said on Wednesday it has signed on as the naming rights sponsor for the V8 Supercars championship for the next five years.
The partnership includes flying the 11 racing teams to events, and establishing a new travel site for fans to book flights and accommodation. The 2016 season, which runs for 10 months, features races in Australia, New Zealand and Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Virgin chief executive John Borghetti said he was excited about supporting a sport which drew two million fans to its races each year.
“V8 Supercars is Australia’s third highest attended sport and we look forward to supporting its continued growth,” Borghetti said in a statement.
“As naming rights partner, we will work with Supercars to generate further economic and tourism benefits for communities across Australia, including through the launch of our new Supercars Travel platform.”
V8 Supercars chief executive James Warburton said: “Supercars generate $250 million in economic and tourism benefits to the cities and regions we visit in every state and territory and Virgin Australia will play a vital role in continuing to drive this growth.”
Virgin became the AFL’s official airline in January 2011, wresting the title away from Qantas. It re-signed for a further five years in 2013 and also had individual sponsorships with a number of clubs, including Greater Western Sydney Giants and Gold Coast Suns. The airline is also the official airline of the Australia’s NBL.