Ecclestone Plays Down Briatore's Reviving the Breakaway Series

Although Flavio Briatore has been thrown out of all FIA-sanctioned competitions for life following his role in the Renault race fixing scandal, there are plenty of people that are convinced the 59-year old Italian has not said his last word in world motor racing. Indeed, the FIA prohibited Briatore from their own competitions, but that doesn't mean Briatore cannot start from scratch in some other place.

Remember the “breakaway series” idea projected by the Formula One Teams Association earlier this year? Yes, you got it right, there are several rumors that now suggest Briatore will put all his efforts into creating a rival series to Formula One's. The question is, will he succeed?

Asked about this rather improbable prospect, F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone – who is also a close friend of Briatore and also business partner in owning an English football club – didn't seem too worried. Although admitting Briatore's ban was too harsh, the 78-year old Englishman insisted that this won't be a good way for the Italian to strike back.

I thought the punishment was probably a bit harsh but I don't know how it can be changed. I don't think he deserved it. I think he should have had his hand slapped,” said the Brit in an interview with The Times, before referring to the breakaway series allegations.

Well, he's going to find it difficult because the FIA controls most of the circuits, the key people and everything else. When he had a following wind earlier this year, he couldn't get it done so it's going to be even harder now. He wouldn't get a following from the people that matter,” added the F1 boss.

One more obstacle in Briatore's way would be the FIA insisting that it won't sanction any competition “involving Mr. Briatore in any capacity whatsoever.” Under the circumstances, looking for new sponsors, circuits, drivers, teams and so on seems like a long shot.
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