Haas F1 title sponsor Rich loses court case over logo

Haas Formula 1 team title sponsor Rich Energy Ltd and its CEO William Storey have lost a court case over a copyright infringement claim filed by specialist bicycle manufacturer Whyte Bikes.

Haas F1 title sponsor Rich loses court case over logo

The Sussex-based company took action to defend its stag logo, claiming that the Rich Energy logo was a copy of its own, and was being used without authorisation.

 

As well as its presence on drink cans, the stag logo features prominently on the 2019 Haas car, as well as as on the helmets of Kevin Magnussen and Romain Grosjean.

The judgement in effect means that Rich Energy can no longer use the stag logo in any form. However, in response the company says that it may submit an appeal.

The case, in which Rich Energy’s logo designer Sean Kelly was also a defendant via his Staxoweb Ltd company, was heard in March at the High Court in London. Her honour Judge Melissa Clarke delivered her judgement today in a 58-page document.

In the very first paragraph Judge Clarke states: “This is judgment in a copyright infringement claim. What is sought, amongst other things, is an injunction which would require the removal of the logo of the First Defendant, Rich Energy Limited, from the Formula 1 race car and website of the Rich Energy Haas Formula 1 motor racing team.”

She concludes that the defendants did indeed infringe Whyte’s copyright, and that “the Claimant is entitled to injunctive relief and for damages or an account of profits at its election.”

Whyte noted that it had used its stag logo since 2008. In their evidence, the defendants said the Rich logo was designed in 2015, after extensive internet searches for stag logos, but they insisted that it was not inspired by Whyte’s version.

In her judgement Judge Clarke made it clear that she did not agree with Storey and Kelly’s explanation of how its logo was originated, noting “the Defendants’ evidence on independent design is at best, in my judgment, confused and contradictory and purports to be supported by documents which are not what they seem.”

In a statement reacting to the outcome of the legal case, Rich Energy CEO Storey was quoted as saying: "I am disappointed in the ruling and felt the material facts
speak for themselves.

"However this is a blip and won’t distract us from the tremendous progress
being made. We are considering our legal options, including appeal, we will not allow it to become a distraction."

A Haas F1 spokesman said the team was unable to comment on any possible changes to its livery at this stage.

 

shares
comments
Mercedes has "good ideas" to improve record-breaking W10

Previous article

Mercedes has "good ideas" to improve record-breaking W10

Next article

Bottas quickest by 1.4s on first day of Barcelona F1 test

Bottas quickest by 1.4s on first day of Barcelona F1 test
Load comments
The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address Prime

The core problems Yas Marina’s long-awaited tweaks won't address

OPINION: Changes to the layout of Abu Dhabi’s circuit aim to reverse the trend of insipid Formula 1 races there - the promoter has even described one of the new corners as “iconic”. And that, argues STUART CODLING, is one of this venue’s abiding failings

How Ferrari offered Callum Ilott what Red Bull couldn't Prime

How Ferrari offered Callum Ilott what Red Bull couldn't

Last year's Formula 2 runner-up Callum Ilott could be on his way to becoming the first Briton to contest a grand prix in an Alfa Romeo since Reg Parnell in 1950. But, says Oleg Karpov, the Ferrari Driver Academy protege is having to temper his ambition at the moment – outwardly at least…

Formula 1
Jul 25, 2021
The signs that point to F1's rude health Prime

The signs that point to F1's rude health

OPINION: Formula 1's calendar might still be facing disruption as the pandemic affects travel but, says Mark Gallagher, the business itself is fundamentally strong thanks to the epic rivalry taking place on track and the consistent arrival of new sponsors.

Formula 1
Jul 24, 2021
The unexpected benefit of F1's sprint race repeat Prime

The unexpected benefit of F1's sprint race repeat

OPINION: Formula 1's sprint race trial at Silverstone drew mixed feedback on Saturday, but there remained the true test of how it would impact Sunday's Grand Prix. While fans were busy marvelling at Fernando Alonso's progress, a key lesson was being learned that would directly contribute to the dramatic lap-one clash at Copse the following day

Formula 1
Jul 22, 2021
The off-track considerations that led to Hamilton/Verstappen F1 shunt Prime

The off-track considerations that led to Hamilton/Verstappen F1 shunt

OPINION: Formula 1’s 2021 title fight turned ugly last weekend when Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton collided at the start of the British Grand Prix. Verstappen thankfully walked away unharmed, but this had been a clash long-since coming.

Formula 1
Jul 21, 2021
British Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

British Grand Prix Driver Ratings

The 2021 British Grand Prix will live long in the memory for the dramatic clash between Formula 1's two title protagonists, which opened the door for other drivers to capitalise. One did so in spectacular fashion, while others fluffed their lines

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021
How Leclerc almost defied Hamilton after Silverstone clash Prime

How Leclerc almost defied Hamilton after Silverstone clash

A poor start for Valtteri Bottas and the lap one clash between Formula 1's 2021 title protagonists gave Charles Leclerc a surprise lead in the British Grand Prix that he almost held to the end. Here's how the Ferrari driver came close to a famous victory, ultimately denied by a recovering Lewis Hamilton three laps from home

Formula 1
Jul 19, 2021
The signs that suggest Mercedes can win at Silverstone Prime

The signs that suggest Mercedes can win at Silverstone

Red Bull and Max Verstappen scored an early blow against Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes at Silverstone, with sprint qualifying race victory. But that doesn’t mean Sunday’s grand prix is a foregone conclusion. Although Verstappen starts as the favourite, here’s why Mercedes still holds hope of winning

Formula 1
Jul 18, 2021