Bernie Ecclestone has put his hand in his own pocket to help out the struggling Minardi squad, investing an undisclosed amount in the 'other' Italian team. Minardi boss Paul Stoddart had something of a public row with McLaren's Ron Dennis in ...
Bernie Ecclestone has put his hand in his own pocket to help out the struggling Minardi squad, investing an undisclosed amount in the 'other' Italian team. Minardi boss Paul Stoddart had something of a public row with McLaren's Ron Dennis in Friday's press conference in regard to the 'Fighting Fund' of cash to help out small teams that never materialized.
Dennis suggested Stoddart should quit if he can't take the pressure but it seems Ecclestone has stepped in to provide Minardi the lifeline it needs. "I have a new business partner, Mr. Bernard Charles Ecclestone," Stoddart said. "He is putting the money in out of his own pocket. It is enough money to put a smile on my face and I hope we can prove it was a wise investment."
"Yesterday was the last thing I wanted to do. Bernie brought the idea up and we discussed it this morning. It was all done very quick. I think he is a guy who doesn't want to see a crisis while he is at the helm. Common sense prevailed and I am very proud to say that someone does care about the integrity of Formula One. I am quite saddened that it is no thanks to some of my peers. But that doesn't matter, I can live with it and I am quite happy."
Ecclestone was to the point in his explanation: "We need to shut up all this rubbish and get on with the sport. We need to go racing. We are racers. We are not financers we are bloody racers." The diminutive F1 supremo is also expected to help out Jordan.
Eddie Jordan was naturally supportive of Ecclestone's decision: "Bernie is going to help Minardi for now and he is doing it personally," he said. "None of the teams have had to put their hand in their pockets. Bernie thinks it is right for the good of the sport to keep ten teams there and he is doing everything at no loss to any team."