Jun.30 (GMM) Amid controversy over allegedly racist comments, Bernie Ecclestone has received some support from a retired American racing driver.
Days after the former F1 supremo received scathing rebukes for saying that “in many cases black people are more racist than white people”, Willy T Ribbs says Ecclestone actually gave him a shot at a Formula 1 career.
“He wanted me in the car. He wanted me in Formula 1,” Ribbs, who tested for Ecclestone’s Brabham team in 1986, told CNN.
“His sponsors at the time were Italian,” said the 65-year-old former Nascar and Indycar driver. “They wanted Italian drivers, and I totally respect him. I have no issues with that.
“My goal was to be in Formula 1, but Bernie Ecclestone made a statement because Bernie Ecclestone put the first man of colour, first black man, in a Formula 1 car.”
Ribbs says he has “only respect” for the 89-year-old.
Mercedes has reacted to the new wave of racial politics in Formula 1 by deciding to drop its iconic silver livery in favour of an all-black one for 2020.
Germany’s Bild newspaper said the idea was discussed by team boss Toto Wolff and Lewis Hamilton at the beginning of the recent George Floyd protests.
Guests of Grand Prix Tours will be treated to a complete and thorough race weekend that includes an invitation to our private F1 Celebrity Hosted Talk Show. During the event guests will receive insider information regarding all things Formula 1 and firsthand perspective into team preparations leading up to the race. Follow the link above to learn more about our trip to the United States Grand Prix.
Join Grand Prix Tours as we head to Singapore and the Marina Bay Street Circuit for the only true night race on the Formula 1 calendar. One of only 4 street circuits on the F1 calendar the beauty of the modern Formula 1 cars are on full display under the bright lights of the Marina Bay street circuit. Follow the link above to learn more about our trip to the Singapore Grand Prix.
The Mexican Grand Prix is always a great test for Formula 1 drivers and teams alike. With extreme heat and the high elevation drivers have to be physically prepared and mechanics have to be mentally ready for anything. The atmosphere created by the fans at the Mexican Grand Prix rivals that of races like Japan and Italy. The passion and pride for local drivers is nearly unmatched.