Bernie Ecclestone should take it upon himself to 'uncrap' Formula 1 if he feels he doesn't have a good enough product to sell, according to Force India team principal Vijay Mallya.
Ecclestone had been quoted as saying he felt engineers had 'given him a crap product' to sell, though it is considered he was referring to the current generation of power units specifically, rather than the sport as a whole.
Nonetheless, in a line of questioning during Friday's team principal press conference that focused on the backlash against 'negativity' in Formula 1, Mallya candidly reacted to the misquoted 'crap' comment by saying Ecclestone should nonetheless take responsibility to 'uncrap' it if that is how he feels.
“How would I respond to the chief executive's comment that he had a crappy product to sell? He shouldn't be selling the product if he thought it was crap. But considering that he sells the product – that he calls crap and makes billions out of it – he needs to work with the participants to un-crap it!”
Indeed, Mallya touched upon the belief that the sport has a negative portrayal to the masses, saying he believes there would be more positive publicity if there was more certainty for the sport.
“Formula One is perhaps the most exciting sport in the world. Probably has the highest viewership of all sports and, if Formula One is made sustainable for all participants I think the negativity will be removed.
“Either they [the media] can say that the sport is very boring because the two Mercedes cars are quicker than everybody else by miles, or, they can say 'wow, Mercedes did a fantastic job'. It's a question of the media's option on how to present it.
“Having said that. I believe that all the positives of Formula One as a sport will be given more prominence if the fundamental issue, which everybody is speculating about – I'm sure many of us get asked these questions all the time – about 'are you going to be around next year?' This is a burning issue which teams themselves discuss at every possible opportunity and in every possible meeting, whether inside the strategy group or outside.
“So, as I said before, at this very press conference. If the stability of all participants in Formula One is addressed as a matter of priority, we will have more exciting racing and we will get a lot more positive media”