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F1 Ex-boss Bernie Ecclestone Says He Would 'Take a Bullet' for Vladimir Putin

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Last Updated: July 01, 2022, 18:02 IST

Bernie Ecclestone (Twitter)

Bernie Ecclestone (Twitter)

Bernie Ecclestone has been friends with Vladimir Putin since the inception of the Formula One Russian Grand PrixP back in 2014

Former Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone is again back in the headlines but unfortunately for all the wrong reasons. In a series of controversial comments, the businessman said that he would “take a bullet” for Vladimir Putin and the Russian president is a “first-class person.”

Ecclestone has been friends with Putin since the inception of the Russian GP back in 2014.

During an interaction on British TV show Good Morning Britain, with hosts Ben Shephard and Kate Garraway, Ecclestone was heard making the controversial comments. He was also asked if the Russian President was still his friend and in his reply, Ecclestone said, “I’d still take a bullet for him. I’d rather it didn’t hurt, but I would still take a bullet.”

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Though, the 91-year-old Englishman did not stop there as he went on to describe Putin as “honourable.”

He blasted Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky for not handling the Russian invasion properly. Ecclestone believes that Ukrainian President could have done more to stop the war.

Unsurprisingly, the former Formula One chief executive’s comments received a huge backlash. Seven-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton as among those who criticised Ecclestone’s remarks.

“We don’t need any more of it, to hear from someone that believes in the war, and the displacement of people and killing of people, and supporting that person [Putin] is beyond me,” Hamilton said as per a report published by The Guardian.

Formula One also distanced itself from the comments made by Ecclestone. The publication reports that a Formula One spokesperson had said the comments made by the billionaire are his personal views and simply in contrast to the values of the sport.

This is not the first time that Ecclestone found himself in the centre of controversies. Back in May, he was arrested for illegally carrying a gun. The arrest took place in Brazil while he was set to travel to Switzerland from Sao Paolo in a private jet.

Previously, he was also accused of bribing a former banker to gain a profitable result in a particular Formula One business deal.

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first published:July 01, 2022, 18:02 IST
last updated:July 01, 2022, 18:02 IST