23 Jun 2009

Briatore wants to stay friends with Ecclestone

6:34 am on 23 June 2009

Renault team boss Flavio Briatore refuses to allow his friendship with Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone be soured by plans for a breakaway championship.

The Italian and Ecclestone, 78, are co-owners of English championship football club Queens Park Rangers.

At the same time, Ecclestone is a long-term ally of International Automobile Federation (FIA) president Max Mosley, who is at loggerheads with the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) over next year's rules.

Mosley branded some of the team bosses 'loonies' at last weekend's British Grand Prix and accused Briatore of pushing the breakaway so he could become the new Ecclestone.

Briatore gave Ecclestone and Mosley a lift to Silverstone on Sunday in his helicopter -- joking afterwards that they all had a parachute.

He found Mosley's comments less amusing, however, and says while Mosley is going personal all the time he's too much of a gentleman to follow, noting Mosley's own habits had been well documented after a sado-masochistic sex scandal last year.