Bernie Ecclestone railed against “democracy” and urged an overhaul of F1’s rules in an interview with Russian television.
Speaking to the Russian government-backed channel RT Ecclestone repeated his call to “tear up the rulebook”.
“We are in show business,” he said. “The minute we stop entertaining, we’re in trouble.”
Asked about past comments that F1’s rule-making process had become “too democratic”, Ecclestone answered “I don’t think there’s any place for democracy, full stop. Anywhere.”
However he also claimed Formula One is only superficially democratic. “It appears to be a democracy, perhaps,” he said.
“I think, if you can get people to, more or less, fall in line with what you’re trying to do and support you, then it seems like democracy, which is exactly what democracy should be seeming like.”
Ecclestone reiterated his staunch backing for Russian president Vladimir Putin – “I’m his best supporter” – and like Putin threw his backing behind Sepp Blatter, the embattled president of football’s governing body FIFA who has been charged with corruption.
“I don’t think he should have ever stepped down and I don’t think he should have ever been challenged,” said Ecclestone, “because it’s because of him we have a lot of countries around the world that are now playing football.”
“And if these people allegedly have been corrupted to make things happen in their country, it’s good. It’s a tax football had to pay.”
Ahead of next week’s United States Grand Prix, Ecclestone said F1 “ought to try and beef up a little bit in America” but admitted “it’s hard for me”.
“I’m not very enthusiastic about America,” he said. “The biggest problem with them is that they believe they’re the greatest sort of power in the world.”
“It’s difficult, because, they are a big island, so they are a bit isolated,” he added. “They are slowly starting to learn what other people in the world do”.
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