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Bernie Ecclestone: "Putin does a lot for his country and for world peace"

  • Published on 03 May 2017 10:05
  • comments 7
  • By: Rik Klein Entink

Former F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone says the best thing about the sport's new era is that there is finally a fight at the front.

Invited as a guest of the respective promoters, despite only now having a hands-off role, the 86-year-old was present in both Bahrain and Russia recently.

He credits the success of the Sochi race to controversial Russian president Vladimir Putin.

"I remember when I first came here and I was discouraged," the Izestia news agency quotes Ecclestone as saying.

"I was not completely sure Russia would be able to build such a great track, but I relaxed after the guarantees given to me by Vladimir Putin. I know that your president only takes informed decisions," he added.

"He will be remembered as a great president, who does a lot for his country and for world peace," Ecclestone said.

He said he is sure Sochi will stay on the calendar beyond its 2025 contract, but confirmed reports that talks about a night race have now ended.

"We had the idea but I don't know if it's worth it. The TV pictures from Sochi in the afternoon are wonderful and everything is organised at a very high level, so there's no need to change," said Ecclestone.

Finally, Ecclestone spoke about the 2017 season, in which changes he presided over last year came into fruition in the form of the current, faster cars.

And at the front, Mercedes finally has a challenger in Ferrari.

"I think Sebastian (Vettel) and Lewis (Hamilton) will continue to fight for first place," said Ecclestone. "It will be a very interesting fight.

"This year, Ferrari is really back in the fight for the top places, and that's very good news. Fans were very tired of Mercedes' domination of recent years, and increased competition helps the promoters to sell more tickets," he added.

Replies (7)

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  • Maybe he does, maybe he doesnt. You honestly dont mind either way, Ecclestone, as long as he feed you that lovely honeyflavoured cash.

    • + 1
    • May 3 2017 - 10:19
  • Jutlandia

    Posts: 191

    I think Bernie is loosing grip, or going a bit senile now.
    Putin is dangerous as hell.

    • + 1
    • May 4 2017 - 08:08
    • Is losing, you say? I believe he lost his marbles ages ago.

      • + 1
      • May 4 2017 - 13:04
    • Putin is doing what any competent leader should be doing for their country. Before you swallow the western propaganda whole sale you need to lay off the cool aid and realize the biggest threat to the free world today are the neocons around the world fronted by American interests. Big brother, every major American intelligence agency already sees and hears everything. The american ruling elite can frame just about anyone they like for untold crimes and totally get away with all of it with congressional and public support while there you sit and call Putin 'dangerous'. Hilarious!

      • + 0
      • May 4 2017 - 16:18
    • Jutlandia

      Posts: 191

      @MCLARENFAN1968
      Putin a competent leader? He maybe is for the russians, but stealing a part of Ukraine is not very competent in my my eyes, that is robbery of the worst kind.
      I'm sorry for the ordinary russian that suffers under the international sanctions, but you chosed Putin, and you'll have to live with it.
      To me Russian is nothing but a Petrol station with a flag. The only product that you're selling is natural gas.

      • + 0
      • May 4 2017 - 21:09
  • JEmmitt

    Posts: 7

    Getting a little heavy here. Anyone for a Unified Peninsula Grand Prix?

    • + 0
    • May 4 2017 - 16:57
  • RogerF1

    Posts: 501

    Definitely a bit political here but then the article had that slant. My surprise was the comment about Sochi being a great track. Most processional race to date for at least the eight top runners, only serious fun on first two and last two laps? Always prefer some real grass to keep the drivers on their toes.

    • + 1
    • May 5 2017 - 00:35

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25 - Jun 27
Austria Red Bull Ring
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30 - Aug 1
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