On Wednesday, representatives from Liberty Media overcame the final official hurdle to its acquisition of Formula 1 as their presentation to the World Motor Sport Council led to unanimous agreement that the organisation’s plans for the sport were in its best interests.
Following the announcement by the FIA that the sale will indeed go ahead, attention now turns to the future of F1’s long-standing chief Bernie Ecclestone. The man himself added fuel to the fire of the rumour mill on Thursday as he intimated that his involvement in the sport could be coming to an end.
In an interview with Press Association Sport reported by ESPN, Ecclestone explained that “It is not a case of my terms, it is a case of let’s have a look and see which way they would like to go.”
There has been speculation recently as to who may succeed Ecclestone should his control eventually be relinquished and Sean Bratches, former executive of ESPN has been touted as a favourite of Liberty chairman Chase Carey and possible replacement.
Liberty Media’s targets of preserving the sport’s traditional races in conjunction with expansion in the Americas and on the digital landscape seem to be leading to Ecclestone’s departure. How long he can hold on in the build-up to the new season will be a particular area of interest as the takeover is expected to be concluded within the next “three to four weeks”.