Ecclestone: Why would I damage F1?

Date published: January 28 2017

Bernie Ecclestone has quashed reports that he is set to start a rival series, adamant he would never do anything to “damage” Formula 1.

Ousted from his position as Formula 1’s CEO when Liberty Media’s takeover of the sport was completed on Monday, reports emerged suggesting that Ecclestone could launch a series to rival F1.

According to Auto Bild, the Brit is looking into reviving long-time friend Flavio Briatore’s GP1 concept.

Involving lower budgets, normally aspirated engines and standard chassis, the series would compromise GP2 and GP3 teams but without the FIA.

Ecclestone, though, has dismissed the speculation.

“I have built the championship over the last near 50 years, which is something I am proud of, and the last thing I want is to see it damaged,” he told Reuters.

But while a rival series is not on the cards, the 86-year-old says he’s not ready to sit around doing nothing.

“I’m not the retiring person,” he said.

The former F1 supremo added that he believes Liberty and new CEO Chase Carey will be good for the sport.

“The new owner of the company will be able to carry out the administration of the company in a different way to the way I had, which was to produce financial results for the shareholders, the normal actions of a chief executive.

“This I have done for the different shareholders over the last years and also when I owned 100 percent of the company.

“I would have loved the luxury of what Chase Carey, the CEO, is able to do. I hope the F1 supporters appreciate this as Chase intends to put money back into the sport.”