Sponsor stays at Renault after crash-gate

(GMM) One of Renault's existing on-car sponsors has announced it will not be following ING and Mutua Madrilena by pulling out of the French team with immediate effect.

The latter companies said the crash-gate scandal had triggered their decision to quit, but Pepe Jeans – a London based casual wear brand – said in a statement that it will complete its contract through to the end of 2009.

Pepe Jeans signage appears on the nose of the R29 car, as well as on the outer edges of the driver's side head protection.

In a statement, the company said it "in no way condones" Nelson Piquet's deliberate crash in Singapore last year, but agrees with the FIA that it was individuals to blame for the conspiracy rather than Renault "as a whole".

Meanwhile, it is believed that Megafon – a Russian mobile phone operator – intends to ramp up its involvement with the Enstone based team, as does the French oil company Total.

The only other brand listed as an "official partner" by Renault, Universia, is expected to depart at the end of 2009 along with Fernando Alonso.

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