Stressful time for fatigued Ecclestone

Bernie Ecclestone cut a fatigued figure in the Barcelona paddock at the weekend, as the sport’s chief executive clings to Formula 1 power.

The 83-year-old had travelled to Spain on Saturday almost direct from Munich, where on Friday he sat in court and listened to the testimony of Gerhard Gribkowsky, the jailed banker he allegedly bribed.

Some predict that diminutive Briton Ecclestone will soon join Gribkowsky behind bars, and in Spain some sources reported that the Formula 1 ‘supremo’ has seemed tired and without his usually mischievous and jovial mood in past weeks.

Perhaps he is just busier than ever, juggling his management of Formula 1 with the Munich proceedings.

He could not, for example, simply skip the Spanish Grand Prix, as he met with almost every single Formula 1 race promoter in Barcelona, including representatives from Russia, where the Sochi race is reportedly endangered over the Crimean crisis.

Ecclestone also apparently met at the Circuit de Catalunya with influential figures like Daimler chairman Dieter Zetsche, and Red Bull mogul Dietrich Mateschitz.

And on Tuesday, he will be back in court, the German news agency DPA reports.

“This is actually a very stressful time for him,” admitted Christian Horner, the team boss at Red Bull but also a close friend and confidante, touted as a potential successor.

“Bernie is the one who holds everything together,” Horner added. (GMM)

Subbed by AJN.