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Confusion over new Allsport boss

NEWS STORY
10/12/2010

Following the announcement of the appointment of David Campbell as boss of Allsport Management, Bernie Ecclestone has sent out some confusing signals.

On Wednesday, Allsport - the Geneva based company that handles all trackside advertising, sponsorship, merchandising and corporate hospitality for F1 - announced that Paddy McNally, who founded the company almost thirty years ago, was to retire. At the same time, it was revealed that Campbell, Europe chief executive for AEG, who amongst his roles runs London's O2 Arena, would be joining Bernie Ecclestone in a capacity which would see him take charge of various commercial aspects of the sport including sponsorship - effectively replacing McNally.

However, comments made by Ecclestone to the Press Association appear to paint an entirely different picture.

"He is going to join Allsport run by Mr McNally in Geneva and be helping him," said the Englishman. "He needs a bit of help.

"He hasn't started yet," he continued, "so we'll have to see what exactly he is going to do or not do, obviously. It's too new to know. I hope he can do it. It's a completely different thing to what he has been doing at O2. But he's a commercial-minded guy, so I'm sure there will be no problems."

Hmm, a little patronising don't you think? Certainly a comment that suggests Ecclestone has his doubts.

Then again, perhaps the wily old fox noted the claim in some sections of the media suggesting that Campbell is being lined up as his successor.

According to Pitpass sources, and seemingly borne out by Ecclestone's own comments, Campbell's appointment is not the work of the F1 supremo but CVC, the rights holders for Formula One.

It is said that CVC was worried following the recent attack on Bernie Ecclestone in London, fearing that the 80-year-old's 'performance' may have been affected, hence the decision to appoint Campbell.

Might this explain Ecclestone's comments and even his desire to allow - suggest even - that watch manufacturer Hublot use his battered face in its latest advertising campaign. Proof, indeed, that the old fox is as wily as ever.

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