21 December 2013
Luca di Montezemolo says F1 needs to plan post-Ecclestone
Luca di Montezemolo urges F1 teams to prepare for life after Bernie Ecclestone
Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo has called on F1 teams to start planning for a future without Bernie Ecclestone at the head of the sport.
While Ecclestone remains in charge of F1, the 83-year-old is currently embroiled in a series of legal battles linked to allegations of bribery over the deal that saw CVC secure control of the sport, with Ecclestone having always denied any wrong doing.
Should Ecclestone be forced to stand down, or indeed when he elects to retire himself, there is currently no-one lined up as his replacement and di Montezemolo said it was important that teams looked at the options available when the time comes.
"We are arriving a little bit at the end of a very, very important cycle and era of Formula One," he was quoted by Reuters. "While Bernie is here, Bernie knows and Bernie is intelligent. Sometimes he is too conservative but he's Bernie.
"We have to discuss, because at the end of the day this is our business. I think that after Bernie, who is unique, it's necessary to approach a different governance for the sport.
"I will never accept that instead of Bernie we find a one man show...We have to create a group of governance in which you have a CEO, and then you have one in charge of motor racing."
Di Montezemolo added that it was important for the competing teams to take a long-term view over the future of the sport, with the possible that CVC would one day elect to cash in on its investment.
"I am in favour of doing a company fully owned by the teams...but this will be in the future,” he said. “Today we have a contract with CVC until 2020. This is the reason why I want, in the interests of Formula One, to be more close with the teams...we have to discuss about the future of Formula One, Formula One is my life.
"I think CVC is good for today but I don't think the future of Formula One will be with CVC because they want sooner or later to sell. CVC is an investment fund and Bernie is the only one inside that group that has credibility, knowhow, experience, time totally dedicated to Formula One. The other people, they don't know anything.
"I think that now all of us have to have a clear idea of the future."
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