Felipe Nasr is adamant he is not a pay driver but rather has chosen a business model for his career that has seen him receive long-term support.
Winner of the British Formula Three series and third in GP2, Nasr stepped up to a Formula 1 race-seat with Sauber this season.
But coming with a reported £12m in sponsorship from Banco do Brasil, the 22-year-old has found himself labelled by some as a 'pay driver'.
Nasr, though, insists that is not the case.
"I think it is quite stupid that people think that way," he told Sky Sports.
"It is really a short way of thinking because I think more countries follow this example of supporting their own drivers.
"I have been together with Banco do Brasil for the last four or five years, we had a project on my career and we went through every step and I am glad to say I have never had to pay to race.
"When I was 16 I had offers from Red Bull, from Gravity, from other junior programmes, but I chose to go with Steve Robertson and I am still working with him nowadays. By the age of 16 I had my own car, my own salary, my own house, I didn't have to pay for any championship I participated in.
"I think more people should follow this example and have these kind of companies supporting their own drivers. I think people are just interpreting it in the wrong way."