Johnnie Walker has secured a partnering agreement with Formula 1 racing team Team McLaren Mercedes. The sponsorship links the Johnnie Walker brand with McLaren Mercedes in a similar way to Diageo's sponsorship of NASCAR in North America.

Through this sponsorship, Johnnie Walker "will demonstrate that beverage alcohol companies can effectively promote responsible drinking and change consumer attitude to over-consumption and drinking and driving," the company said in a statement.

In addition to its annual sponsorship and marketing investment of between £10m and £15m, the brand will spend £2m every year directly on responsible drinking programmes in Grand Prix markets.

Charles Allen, marketing director for Johnnie Walker, said: "We believe that this sponsorship will help us take Johnnie Walker to a new level in terms of its attractiveness to consumers around the world."

Norbert Haug, vice-president, Mercedes-Benz Motorsport added: "Diageo's plan to use their involvement with Johnnie Walker as a platform for responsible drinking messages will be strongly supported by us as it is an important aspect of our partnership."

The arrangement with Team McLaren Mercedes provides Johnnie Walker with a range of rights allowing scope for consumer programmes in selected markets. Johnnie Walker presence on Team McLaren Mercedes cars and drivers begins with the first ever Grand Prix in Turkey on 21 August when the Johnnie Walker Striding Man will appear on Team McLaren Mercedes MP4-20 racing car.

The Striding Man and Johnnie Walker signature will be located on the car's air intake, behind the driver's head as well as on the overalls of the drivers, racing team members' uniforms and Team McLaren Mercedes race transporters.