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Ecclestone bullish over bank demands

ESPN Staff
October 26, 2012 « Gutierrez replaces Perez for FP1 | Backers' financial troubles embarrass Force India »
Bernie Ecclestone spoke to the media in India to comment on the demands © Press Association
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Bernie Ecclestone has said he is not overly concerned by a demand from German bank BayernLB that he pay $400 million in damages.

Following the Gerhard Gribkowsky trial earlier this year - in which BayernLB's ex-chief risk officer Gribkowsky was convicted of receiving bribes from Ecclestone - BayernLB is attempting to recover damages from Ecclestone. It believes Ecclestone's payments to Gribkowsky caused it to sell its stake in Formula One on the cheap, but Ecclestone says he's not allowing himself to be too worried by the situation.

"They [BayernLB] have asked our lawyers in Germany if they could have $400 million back," Ecclestone is quoted by the Telegraph. "I didn't respond. There's no point is there? They will sue. If they win, they get paid. If they lose, it will cost them.

"A massive per cent of these actions that take place, people settle. They don't want the trouble. The very reason I gave Gribkowsky money was to stop the problem and aggravation which would have gone on for years."

Ecclestone added that he was fully prepared to go to court rather than agree to settle.

"Absolutely. But there's nothing to worry about. I'm aggravated with the nonsense I'm being put through for all this. I sold the shares for the bank. It was something they couldn't sell. They had six people look at it and wouldn't buy. I got them out of trouble and now I'm in trouble. Life is like that sometimes.

"If [the BayernLB case] goes to court in England, maybe different things will come out. But there's nothing to stop me running F1."