Bernie Ecclestone issues humorous Xmas card

Motor Racing - Formula One World Championship - United States Grand Prix - Race Day - Austin, USA

This is the Christmas card sent out Bernie Ecclestone this year, in what is rapidly becoming a tradition for the F1 overlord.
Each Christmas, Mr Ecclestone sends out a bespoke card, with a cartoon depicting a contemporary Formula One issue, with a humerous slant.

This year's greeting, which has been sent out to close family and friends, bears an illustration of a wedding, in which Bernie himself is tying the knot with FIA president Jean Todt.

Performing the ceremony is Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo, dressed as a priest, while the crowd is made up of the familiar faces of team bosses and racing drivers, most of which are shown throwing the newly-signed Concorde Agreement as confetti.

At the bottom of the picture the hands of an unidentified conductor orchestrates the entire scene.

The card pokes fun at this year's wrangling over the Concorde Agreement – the contract that binds the FIA, individual F1 teams and Formula One Management (FOM), of which Ecclestone is president.

The document concerns the division of television revenue and prize money. With a new agreement needed this year after the old contract's expiration, individual parties had been in deadlock over the terms.

FIA president Todt had been particularly opposed to the draft terms, as he wanted to secure a greater share of F1's £1billion annual profits for the FIA.

However, with most of the teams now having signed the accord, and Todt and Ecclestone showing a unified front in a staged photo-op earlier this year, it seems the legal wrangling ahead of next year's season has been put to bed.

Despite the apparent harmony, there has been criticism over the apparent close relationship between the two most influential men in the sport.

Former Williams boss Adam Parr, commented to The Telegraph at the time of the photo: "One thing worse than the FIA and FOM fighting is them shaking hands," he tweeted. "Shivers down the spine. Who fights for the teams, the fans, the sport?"

That remains to be seen, but – as far as Bernie's Christmas card is concerned at least – the F1 world is cheering peace, love and Concorde Agreements.
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