Many motorsport fans never thought it would happen, but Formula One’s supreme overlord Bernie Ecclestone has been booted from the big chair.
F1’s new owners, Liberty Media, have shuffled Bernie along after 40 years of work, in which he turned the sport into the giant it is today.
Along the way, Mr Ecclestone earned a reputation for his no-nonsense approach, and scathingly brutal remarks. In honour of his departure from the top job, we have collated some of his wildest here for you now.
- "I had to do something at the time that upset me. I had to give her away. I’d rather have sold her," he said of seeing his daughter being married.
- "The publicity generated by his death was so much... it was good for F1." Ecclestone told a Brazilian newspaper regarding the death of the legendary Ayrton Senna.
- "If I did take away Silverstone and a British Grand Prix I'd be seen as a bad guy, but that wouldn't bother me,” he said in 2004.
- “My organisation starts after the race, when I collect the money bag!” he said in response to Ron Dennis remembering a race in Mexico starting two hours late, compared to the efficient machine Ecclestone has now created.
- "You know I've got one of those wonderful ideas... women should be dressed in white like all the other domestic appliances.”
- When three new teams joined Formula One in 2010, Bernie wasn’t exactly a fan. "We need to get rid of a few of those cripples,” he said at the time.
- "I think the change that is currently taking place is very short-lived, as these social media people are starting to think it is not as good as they thought,” he once famously quipped about the rise of social media. I think 800 million daily Facebook users might disagree, Mr E.
- "What I would really like to see happen is to find the right girl, perhaps a black girl with super looks, preferably Jewish or Muslim, who speaks Spanish," he once told Autosport when discussing female drivers in F1.
But arguably the peak Bernie Ecclestone quote is this, in which he tries to find redeeming qualities in the work of Adolf Hitler.
- "In a lot of ways, terrible to say this I suppose," he began, "but apart from the fact that Hitler got taken away and persuaded to do things that I have no idea whether he wanted to do or not, he was in the way that he could command a lot of people, able to get things done. In the end he got lost, so he wasn't a very good dictator because either he had all these things and knew what was going on and insisted, or he just went along with it... so either way he wasn't a dictator."
Although he later apologised, Ronald Lauder, president of the World Jewish Congress, called for Ecclestone to resign. To which Bernie responded: "If the WJC is influential, it's a pity they didn't sort the banks out.”
Asked to elaborate, Ecclestone said, “They have a lot of influence everywhere."
Oh, Bernie…how we will miss you.