Subliminal advertising from Marlboro via F1 barcode?
Look at the top of that Ferrari F1 car. Yeah, that barcode. Got a sudden urge to smoke a load of tabs? Thought not.
However, there's been a lot of speculation about this mysterious barcode as people have suggested that Ferrari have been hosting a subliminal advert for Marlboro. Of course, seeing as tobacco advertising is banned in the sport, this is rather odd.
While everyone pointed and said "Oi! That's Marlboro that is!", Ferrari consistently refuted the claim time and time again.
However, Ferrari has now given in and decided to remove the barcode image from its team livery.
The European Public Health Commissioner has claimed that the red, white and black barcode was designed to look like a packet of Marlboro cigarettes, leaving the crackpot Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo to spit that such a notion was "pointless and verging on the ridiculous".
Now, a Ferrari spokesman is saying: "Together with Philip Morris International, we have decided to modify the livery of our cars starting with the Barcelona Grand Prix. This decision was taken in order to remove all speculation concerning the so-called ‘barcode', which was never intended to be a reference to a tobacco brand. By this, we want to put an end to this ridiculous story and concentrate on more important things than on such groundless allegations."
'Together with Philip Morris...', the company that own Marlboro... they've decided to remove a barcode that had apparently got nothing to do with them in the first place? It's so confusing that I need a smoke...