Formula One Czar Bernie Ecclestone recently dumped all over an innovative 21st century approach to paying the bills for his ridiculously exorbitant series. One can imagine the billionaire’s version of Marie Antoinette’s apocryphal utterance, perhaps saying “Let them eat caviar.” Facing bankruptcy and already missing races, F1 team Caterham has resorted to crowd funding for raising sponsorship euros. According to USA Today, they’ve already raised over half a million dollars through their web based efforts.
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Characteristically, Czar Bernie I on his throne imperiously disapproves of such a democratic, grass roots racing revolution. It’s clearly a threat to his omnipotence in racing and hints at his impotence elsewhere (he’s 84). AP reports his unfavorable reaction to this “begging bowls” approach as he called it, reminding us of his grasp of the obvious by stating in racing “somebody is going to be last.” The Czar’s decree continued, “If people can’t afford to be in F1 they have to find something else to do.”
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That’s the warm hearted, generous and giving Bernie we all know and love. Described recently in The Telegraph as a series “in crisis” that “no one can afford,” F1’s infallible Czar won’t consider reform and won’t hear of new ideas. Instead, he rigidly stays the course, even while his empire is sinking and a revolutionary storm approaches. As Czar Nicholas II (and his entire family) might have said – had they survived the Russian Revolution – perhaps some reforms are necessary.
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