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Exclusive: Why Bernie Ecclestone avoids stormy weather

NEWS STORY
14/11/2010

Mat Coch writes:

Planning for a successor isn't on the cards according to Bernie Ecclestone, who spoke exclusively to Pitpass ahead of today's season finale. The Formula One supremo admits that the future beyond his reign hasn't been a consideration, and that nothing has been put in place to ensure a smooth transition when the time comes.

"I've no idea, I haven't got a clue," responded the 80-year-old when asked what would happen if he was struck down by lightning. "I keep out of the way of the storms. If there's a storm I stay indoors," he added.

Ecclestone also revealed that he considers next year's twenty race calendar to be the limit in terms of the number of events Formula One can support, disagreeing with Frank Williams' call for more. "There's going to be twenty races next year," he said. "We want about twenty, that's enough I think."

One of those races, the Australian Grand Prix, has come under fire during the last week with the Australian Grand Prix Corporation and Confederation of Australian Motorsport (CAMS) at loggerheads over organising fees. Australian GP boss Ron Walker travelled to Abu Dhabi for discussions with Ecclestone, who believes the dispute will be settled and the race will go ahead as planned. "They're sorting themselves out, it's alright," he said.

When asked about at the 2013 engine regulations, the Englishman was giving little away. Regulations are expected to change to mandate the use of a four-cylinder turbo-charged engine. It's understood that a set of regulations has already been drafted and sent to each of the engine manufacturers for discussion. Those discussions are continuing, though Ecclestone was giving little away. "We're talking about that," he said, "it's a bit political at the moment."

Whichever way the regulations go it's believed they will be heavily restrictive as the sport continues to recover from the global economic crisis, preventing an engine arms race and thus containing costs.

For the moment however, Ecclestone is basking in the end of season atmosphere in Abu Dhabi. After one of the most hotly contested seasons on record the billionaire boss will no doubt be pleased at the way the championship has gone, leaving fans glued to their televisions until the final lap of the year.

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