Bernie Ecclestone says he is being kept unaware of what is going on within Formula One Management since Liberty Media’s takeover.
Ecclestone, who was given the position of chairman emeritus after Chase Carey replaced him as CEO in January, said in an interview he couldn’t pass judgement on how well his successor was performing because “they’ve elevated me to a position that’s so high in the company I can’t see what’s going on.”
“Somebody in the company that’s been elevated to a position that’s different from when they were with me has told all the staff not to discuss things with me,” he added. “So they don’t, officially.”
“It bothers me because I think maybe they think what I’ve been doing is wrong. I have no idea. You know what happens in companies, suddenly things change and people try to cut out things for themselves a little bit. So we’ve got people that have got important positions which they never had. And the reason we never had them is basically because they couldn’t achieve them.”
Formula One’s previous owners CVC let Ecclestone “do whatever I wanted to do”, he admitted. “Hopefully I got it right. And in this case I think with Liberty they want to run… they think the company’s not been run very well and they want to run it differently. So that’s the difference.”
Ecclestone described Carey as being more corporate than entrepreneurial and said his way of running F1 was not “the way they’ve been running [other] companies.”
“I was running the company as chief executive to make as much money as I could. That’s what I was employed to do, which is what I tried to do.”
“And it looks to me like they’re not looking as if they’re trying to make money. They said I was always trying to make money overnight, I’m not looking into the future. So I think our friends at the moment say they’re looking at things much longer-term.”
The former F1 boss also said restrictions on anti-competitive practices had made it harder for business to be run the way he ran the sport.
“I think it’s more difficult to do the way I’ve been lucky enough to deal with the business. Even in Europe today the European Union by the way anything anti-competitive… I’d like to have felt we’ve always been anti-competitive. I don’t want competition, so I’ve been against that. That’s not being serious, it’s supposed to be funny, but it probably is serious.”
2017 F1 season
- Sepang pays Haas compensation for Grosjean’s 2017 crash
- Williams revenues rose in 2017 after Bottas deal with Mercedes
- Australian Grand Prix cost government £56 million last year
- “Grand Prix Driver” takes you inside McLaren’s nightmare final year with Honda
- Undisputed champion: 10 titles name Hamilton top driver of 2017