Bernie Ecclestone will find F1 transition tough, says Chase Carey
New F1 chief executive speaks to Sky Sports News HQ in first TV interview since Liberty takeover confirmed; Hopes Bernie continues to provide "invaluable" advice to new owners
By James Galloway and Sky Sports News HQ's Craig Slater
Last Updated: 05/12/19 9:52am
New F1 chief Chase Carey has told Sky Sports Bernie Ecclestone will find it "difficult" to adjust to his new role but hopes the sport continues to benefit from the Briton's input.
Ecclestone's 40-year reign as F1's commercial chief was ended on Monday night as Liberty Media revealed its new-look management team following the completion of its £6billion takeover. Former team boss Ross Brawn has been appointed to oversee sporting and technical areas of the business.
Ecclestone has been made chairman emeritus and Carey hopes to find the 86-year-old an ongoing role that he still finds "rewarding".
In his first TV interview since adding Ecclestone's former CEO title to his chairman role, Carey told Sky Sports News HQ: "Bernie has run this business the majority of his adult life.
"When he's run it for the period he's run it I certainly understand that the change is going to be difficult for him and create challenges for him.
"But hopefully we'll find a way that it continues to be rewarding for him. I want him to feel good about it. He will always be part of the Formula 1 family, he will always be welcome, and I want to try and make this something he can continue to feel part of.
"But it's a big change for him and I understand that."
When Liberty's takeover plans were first announced last September, Ecclestone announced the American firm had asked him to stay in his role for a further three years.
But the prospect of Ecclestone working as part of a revised management structure once Liberty's takeover was formally completed diminished in recent weeks. Ecclestone admitted to Sky F1 last November he "probably won't fit in" if the American firm introduced a corporate structure.
"I think the reality is that Bernie has really ran the business as a one-man show," Carey told Craig Slater. "That's not a criticism, it's just the reality.
"Bernie has run it relatively alone... there is a team there, certainly give them credit for what they've done to help but Ross has really got respect across this business.
"I have yet to meet somebody that hasn't brought him up as somebody that would be invaluable as an addition to Formula 1, even when they didn't know this was happening. I had an endless list of people that would put Ross Brawn at the top as somebody that they think would be a wonderful addition to the Formula 1 organisation."
Carey has worked alongside Ecclestone since his appointment as F1's chairman last September and hopes to continue benefiting from the Briton's wealth of experience.
"Let me be clear, that respect was sincere," said Carey after hailing Ecclestone's achievements in Liberty's press release announcing its F1 purchase.
"Bernie deserves enormous credit for the business that has been built over the last number of decades and realistically it just got sold for $8billion, so the ultimate proof in the value he created is there for all to see.
"But he has unique insights in the business, he understands it probably better than anyone else, his advice will be invaluable. He has been helpful to me to date and I look forward to his advice as we go forward."