Ecclestone ups the pressure

Bernie Ecclestone has upped the pressure on team bosses, ahead of any renegotiation of Formula One's so-called Concorde Agreement, by indicating that his current offer is about as good as it's going to get. "There's been an offer on the table which they shouldn't refuse," he told journalists recently. "This would be more than they (the teams) had ever dreamed of."

Ecclestone ups the pressure

Last month Ecclestone offered to rework the so-called Concorde Agreement, and then threatened dissenters with legal action over what he sees as the destabilisation of F1. He insists that all the teams are bound by the contract through the 2007 season and that, if the complaints continued, "Writs will fall like autumn leaves."

"If I was one of these teams with the sort of investment they have in Formula One, the last thing I would be doing is to try and destabilise the sport," he added.

Ten teams currently share 47 percent of F1 television revenues, with 53 percent going to SLEC, which is owned by the defunct Kirch Group's bankers (75 percent) and Ecclestone himself (25).

"The problem is that the manufacturers' concerns started when we sold SLEC to Kirch, and they were worried that the sport would be dominated by pay-per-view television. That didn't happen, but now they are concerned about other things," he said.

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