Ford of Europe's motorsport senior manager Gerard Quinn says he does not expect the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico to harm the relationship between Ford and BP.
The leak happened when a drilling rig, the Deepwater Horizon, caught fire and sank, killing 11 workers. BP was leasing the rig off the coast of Louisiana and could now face a huge bill to clean the oil up. The damaged oil well is still pouring 210,000 gallons of oil a day into the Gulf Coast.
The British oil firm is the title sponsor of the Ford World Rally Team and Quinn said they were focused on the bigger picture of the catastrophic environmental effects of the leak.
"This is a much bigger picture than just for the rally," said Quinn. "This is a global catastrophe and to say it's going to impact one part of the business, for example: rally, it's too early to say. I hope in the longer term, it won't. BP is proactively involved with the government to sort it out.
"We have a very close association [with BP] and we have to make an assessment of what's going on. BP has had this disaster, they'll have to work through it and we will have to work through it with them on how it impacts on our relationship. It's too early to preempt anything, but I would like to think it won't affect our partnership."