Sep 07

Ecclestone asked to stay in F1 for three years

After recent heightened speculation it was believed Ecclestone may be on the way out of F1 as part of the Liberty Group sale
2016-06-09_0215 Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has reportedly been asked to stay on for three years once the expected takeover of the sport is completed by Liberty Group.

After recent heightened speculation it was believed Ecclestone may be on the way out of F1 as part of the Liberty Group sale, who have been in extensive takeover talks in a reported £6.5bn deal.

The new ownership would see equity firm CVC Capital Partners sell its controlling share of the sport to Liberty Group headed by US television mogul John Malone.

However, latest reports by Reuters state Ecclestone says he has been approached to remain in charge of F1 for three years as part of the initial broader deal between CVC and Liberty.

“They want me to be here for three years,” Ecclestone told Reuters news agency.

The negotiations between the two parties are understood to be at advanced stages with an announcement imminent.

At the Italian Grand Prix team bosses warned caution to call it the 85-year-old’s final race in charge but did see a potential shift in direction brought by the potential new owners as being a positive step.

It is believed the Liberty Group are interested in raising the ‘show’ aspect of F1 and move away from the constraints of the technical and regulation-based ethos.

The F1 supremo, who has been involved in the sport for over 40 years, has echoed this sentiment for bigger and louder cars but has seen his influence pushed back by the F1 Commission and Strategy Group who are the key to making changes in the sport.

Ecclestone also confirmed he will be absent from the Singapore Grand Prix in order to stay in London to finalise a deal with Liberty.

“Because all this is going through, they (CVC) want me to be there to help them with all sorts of things,” he said. “I can’t afford to be away for five to six days.”

The official announcement is expected by next Tuesday (13th September) ahead of an F1 board meeting with the deal confirmed and a new chairman instated.

Ecclestone believes the new chairman will be Chase Carey, executive vice-chairman of 21st Century Fox and a director of Sky News owner Sky Plc, to replace Peter Brabeck-Letmathe.

“He [Carey] can do lots of things that I haven’t done with this social media, which he seems to be in touch with. He’s been dealing with sponsorship with his TV people. Between us we’ll get on with it.”