Ecclestone out as Liberty Media complete F1 takeover

Date published: January 24 2017 - Editor

Bernie Ecclestone was removed from his position as chief executive after Liberty Media completed its $8 billion takeover of Formula 1 on Monday evening.

With the takeover confirmed, Liberty Media will change their name to the Formula 1 Group.

Ecclestone had held the position for close to four decades, but will now be succeeded by F1 chairman Chase Carey.

The 86-year-old will now serve as chairman emeritus and act as an adviser to the board.

On Monday, Ecclestone claimed that he had been “forced out”.

“I was dismissed today. This is official. I no longer run the company. My position has been taken by Chase Carey,” he told Auto Motor und Sport.

But, Liberty Media’s statement about the takeover quoted Ecclestone as saying: “I’m proud of the business that I built over the last 40 years and all that I have achieved with Formula One, and would like to thank all of the promoters, teams, sponsors and television companies that I have worked with.

“I’m very pleased that the business has been acquired by Liberty and that it intends to invest in the future of F1. I am sure that Chase will execute his role in a way that will benefit the sport.”

Carey confirmed that he will continue to hold his position as F1 chairman and will assume the duties that come with being chief executive.

“I am excited to be taking on the additional role of CEO. F1 has huge potential with multiple untapped opportunities,” he said. “I have enjoyed hearing from the fans, teams, FIA, promoters and sponsors on their ideas and hopes for the sport.

“We will work with all of these partners to enhance the racing experience and add new dimensions to the sport and we look forward to sharing these plans overtime.

“I would like to recognise and thank Bernie for his leadership over the decades. The sport is what it is today because of him and the talented team of executives he has led, and he will always be part of the F1 family.

“Bernie’s role as chairman emeritus befits his tremendous contribution to the sport and I am grateful for his continued insight and guidance as we build F1 for long-term success and the enjoyment of all those involved.”

Meanwhile, former ESPN executive Sean Bratches has been brought in to take care of the commercial aspect of the sport, while ex-Mercedes team boss and Ferrari technical director Ross Brawn will be in charge of the sporting and technical side of things.