The Lotus Formula One Team got in the spirit of the games and tweeted a good luck message to everyone in the Winter Olympics, before the Opening Ceremony on Friday.
The F1 team are known for being more controversial on Twitter (they produced a comical set of rule changes for example, after gaining double points in the last race this season) and the good luck caption was accompanied with an image of two men kissing, presumably showing their support for gay athletes, in a stand against new anti “gay propaganda” legislation in Russia and fears of violence in Sochi.
We would like to sincerely apologise for an unauthorized message posted on our Twitter account today & will ensure this cannot happen again.
— Alpine F1 Team (@AlpineF1Team) February 7, 2014
However, the Lotus Formula One team later deleted the tweet and apologized , stating that the original tweet was “unauthorized.” They wrote, “We would like to sincerely apologise for an unauthorized message posted on our Twitter account today & will ensure this cannot happen again”.
One reason for deleting the tweet, could be to stay in the good side of Russia. There are multiple business interests, firstly beccause Russia is set to host its first Grand Prix later this season on a track around the Sochi Olympic Park, and secondly, the BBC have claimed that the Lotus F1 team is hoping to close a deal with Russian mobile phone company Yotaphone, to sell it 10 percent of the team.
It seems this recent post took it a step too far for the sponsors, risking their grand plans!
Here is some of the backlash it got on twitter:
@Lotus_F1Team you should not apologize for something good. It was brave, and now it's douche. Shame on you, retards.
— joaopapa (@joaopapa) February 7, 2014