x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Ecclestone to stick around

Bernie Ecclestone rubbishes rumours he is to move upstairs in the wake of the turbulent time for the Formula One supremo.

Bernie Ecclestone has rubbished rumours he is to move upstairs in the wake of a turbulent time for the Formula One supremo. Ecclestone came in for criticism following recent remarks seemingly praising former Nazi leader Adolf Hitler, and some critics believe that, at the age of 78, it is perhaps time for him to take a backseat in the sport. There were also suggestions he has lost his touch around the negotiating table given the row that has raged between the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) and the Formula One Teams Association (Fota).

It is known Fota have spent considerably more time dealing with CVC, Formula One's commercial rights holder, than with Ecclestone himself in recent weeks in an attempt to resolve the matter. But a defiant Ecclestone said: "Any story suggesting I'm going anywhere is completely untrue. I don't know where they came from." Ecclestone is firmly of the belief the battle between motor sport's world governing body and the eight teams that comprise Fota will be resolved within days.

A new Concorde Agreement - the confidential document that governs the commercial side of the sport - is almost ready for the FIA to sign, the proviso being that FIA president Max Mosley issues a cast-iron guarantee he will not run again for a post he has held for the last 16 years when his current mandate ends in October. With the matter seemingly close to being resolved, again, Ecclestone added: "I hope to have a Concorde Agreement in place by Wednesday.

"Max will be happy when we have it sorted. "He will have achieved everything he set out to achieve, including a new agreement and cost-cutting. "He will then be in a position to to do what he said he would do and step down." Further underlining his own position, Ecclestone added: "As for me, I'll be around for the future." * PA Sport