Bribe charges “a complete load of rubbish” – Ecclestone

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Bernie Ecclestone has rubbished the charges of bribery being levelled at him in Germany.

Ecclestone told his biographer Tom Bower in an interview for the Sunday Times: “I still don’t know what the German prosecutors think.”

“I wish I was guilty – it would be much easier,” he added. “The charges are a complete load of rubbish.”

A German court is investigating allegations Ecclestone bribed banker Gerhard Gribkowsky in 2006. Gribkowsky was convicted for taking the bribe last year and the court is set to announce its findings on Ecclestone, which could have major ramifications for Formula One.

Ecclestone told the newspaper: “I’m innocent.”

“I’m British, I pay my taxes and, in the end, the truth will come out.”

Ecclestone says he made payment to Gribkowsky to prevent him making false claims about his business affairs which could attract the attention of the British tax authorities.

“I offered him £11m ($16.71),” Ecclestone admitted. “I would save over £2bn ($3.04bn) in taxes, so it was cheap. Gerhard said he’d settle for £50m ($75.97): the final deal with £44m ($66.85).”

Ecclestone testified at Gribkowsky’s trial (pictured) during which Andre Favre, an aide of Ecclestone’s, said he was told to pay $5m to Gribkowsky “using a special company so his name wouldn’t appear”.

Racing world reacts to Danica Patrick’s Daytona, Indy double news

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Here’s a sampling of quotes and social media reaction to Danica Patrick’s news announced earlier Friday that this would be her last full-time season as a driver, and that she’ll race in the Daytona 500 and Indianapolis 500 only in 2018.

This ends a full-time stretch in the top flights of NASCAR and IndyCar. She was in NASCAR from 2012 through 2017, and IndyCar from 2005 through 2011.

Her’s her own post on Twitter and Instagram.

Well…. 2018 Daytona 500 and Indy 500 here I come. 🙌🏼

A post shared by Danica Patrick (@danicapatrick) on

IMS President J. Douglas Boles

“We’re glad Danica plans to return to the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil next May,” IMS President J. Douglas Boles said. “Her final career start will make what’s already shaping up to be a terrific Month of May even more interesting for our fans.

“It’s also fitting that Danica is wrapping up her career at the place and in the race where she became a household name and captured the world’s attention in 2005 – the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Indianapolis 500. We’re looking forward to seeing her back in an Indy car next May alongside all of the tremendous drivers of the Verizon IndyCar Series.”

NASCAR

INDYCAR