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Ecclestone steps down as director of Delta Topco

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Bernie Eccleston at Abu Dhabi GP
Bernie Eccleston at Abu Dhabi GP talking to Vettel, who had to start from the pitlane.
Bernie Ecclestone & Felipe Massa

Bernie Ecclestone supporting Felipe Massa

Bernie Ecclestone's demise may now have begun, as the F1 chief executive stepped down from the sport's board.

The news on Thursday followed hot on the heels of confirmation that Munich prosecutors are indeed sending the 83-year-old Briton's involvement in the Gerhard Gribkowsky bribery scandal to trial this year.

So the F1 holding company, Delta Topco, announced that Bernie Ecclestone "will step down as a director with immediate effect" until "the case has been resolved".

The statement said Ecclestone will continue to run F1 "on a day to day basis", but only "subject to increased monitoring and control by the board".

"Mr Ecclestone has agreed to these arrangements," it added.

Germany's SID news agency said the trial will begin in late April, but Red Bull's Dr Helmut Marko said it would not be unusual if a verdict is not known for "three or four years".

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