Pastor Maldonado delighted his home fans with a demonstration run for Williams on the streets of Caracas on Friday, while his team bosses announced a major new sponsorship deal with energy company Petroleos de Venezuela S.A (PDVSA).
Maldonado completed a series of laps of a temporary track laid out near the famous Paseo de los Proceres monument in front of an estimated 20,000-strong crowd, which included President Hugo Chavez.
Speaking about his runs in a Williams FW32, Maldonado said: "It was unbelievable to share this experience with my countrymen. The amount of people that turned out to watch was just amazing."
Immediately after the runs, Williams confirmed a long-term partnership deal with PDVSA, which is Venezuela's national energy company. The deal will see the company's logos feature on the team's car and driver overalls.
Team boss Frank Williams said: "We are very grateful to PDVSA for having joined our team. They are a substantial partner and can make a meaningful difference to our fighting ability."