Former FIA president Max Mosley says Liberty Media may regret not retaining Bernie Ecclestone as the sport's CEO, adding that for “someone new to come in without all the personal relationships may be difficult”.
Ecclestone was axed as F1 boss two weeks ago after Liberty completed its takeover of the sport with new F1 Chairman Chase Carey adding the role of Chief Executive Officer. Ecclestone, who has since confirmed he will attend some F1 races this season, now becomes 'Chairman Emeritus', although what that role will entail is currently unknown.
“I think it may be quite difficult (for Liberty Media),” Mosley told ITV News
at F1's annual Zoom charity auction on Friday. “I think what he (Ecclestone) was brilliant at was dealing with the promoters and the organisers and the whole structure of the championship. For somebody new to come in without all the personal relationships it may be difficult.
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“If it had been me I'd have kept him on doing the things that he's demonstrably very good at and concentrated my efforts on doing the things that up to now have not been done, like interactive television, virtual reality, social media, the internet and all the rest of it.
“All of that's been slightly neglected in Formula 1 and that's the sort of thing that Liberty will probably be very good at.”
Meanwhile, Mosley added that Ecclestone's biggest legacy will be Formula One itself and the way he turned it into such a global sport, ranked up there with the FIFA World Cup and the Olympics.
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“In a way Formula 1 is his legacy. People tend to forget that probably the potential in the World Rally Championship is, and always has been, greater than Formula 1. Arguably also long distance racing like Le Mans. But Bernie came into Formula 1, and it was big when he came in, and he's made it so much bigger,” Mosley continued.
“When I was FIA president I kept thinking why can't we have another Bernie to do the rallies, to do the long distance and there just wasn't one. All of those different aspects of the sport could be built into just as big a business as Formula 1.”
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