“Bernie will just pay a large fine and that will be the end of it,” was the reaction of one European journalist in the paddock at the recent Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal.
This all has to do with the 2005 sale of F1 to CVC Capital Partners. It’s all very murky but the prosecutors allege that Ecclestone paid Gribkowsky, who was representing competing interests, millions of dollars to not interfere in the sale that some contend was at an inflated price.
Ecclestone freely admits to paying Gribkowsky the money but insists it was because he was being blackmailed. Gribkowsky, no doubt lonely in his cell and seeking a roommate (and he and Bernie know each other very well; they have a long history of financial dealings together), has been singing like a canary ever since he heard the words “guilty as charged.”
It’s funny how some guys get religion just as they take their last breath. Same with crooks and morality when the prison doors slam shut.
Before anybody gets too excited about this whole business, however (and Bernie loves to stoke any story, suggesting that CVC would fire him if he was charged and I say Fat Chance), the prosecutors have submitted their reasons for charging him and Bernie’s lawyers will now file documents saying it’s all a bunch of baloney. The court will then decide whether or not to hear the case.
Until that happens, it’s all just words.
What’s interesting about this story – if there’s ever anything really interesting about WWE entertainers mouthing off (oops! I mean NASCAR drivers!) – is that Kurt Busch and Newman had a run-in at the race in New Hampshire last weekend but it was brother Kyle who started the war of words.
He called Newman an idiot; Newman said Kyle is not very bright.
Good seats still available for the Brickyard 400 at Indianapolis a week from this weekend.
Kurt should get into this little verbal scrap any day now.
Anything to goose the gate, eh?
Finally, driver Ryan Briscoe’s real job in racing his season was driving an LMP2 car for Level 5 Motorsports in the American Le Mans Series, which will be in action at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park this weekend.
But Briscoe broke his wrist while racing in the first Honda Indy Toronto last Saturday. He’ll be replaced by another IndyCar guy, Mike Conway, who will partner with Scott Tucker and Marino Franchitti in the race Sunday at Old Mosport.
Conway, driving for Dale Coyne Racing in Toronto, had two seventh-place finishes in the two Honda Indy races.