Former ESPN exec lined up to replace Ecclestone

Bernie Ecclestone’s days as Formula 1’s supremo are likely numbered as the sport’s new owners appear determined to shake up management and dispense with the old guard.

Following the FIA’s green light given yesterday, Liberty Media has now crossed all the hurdles necessary to take over the sport, with the final deal expected to close before the end of the month.

It is believed the sport’s new owners are keen on reorganizing management at the top, and F1 Chairman Chase Carey is expected to appoint an executive in the coming days to take charge of marketing, sponsorship and media rights deals.

Sean Bratches, a key figure in the rise of TV sports giant ESPN, and who left the network at the end of last year, has apparently been approached by Chase Carey.

Oddly, Formula One has never had a dedicated marketing or sponsorship department with Ecclestone rarely keen on delegating power or important responsibilities.

The Formula One Group’s determination to implement its views of where the sport should be taken next will likely find itself at odds with the 86-year-old supremo who has reigned over the business for many decades and elevated the sport to the financial powerhouse it is today.

With a new owner now at the helm, the once all-powerfull figure is finally set to enjoy a peaceful and well-deserved retirement. Hardly something Bernie is looking forward to…

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