© The Financial Times Ltd 2016
FT and 'Financial Times' are trademarks of The Financial Times Ltd.
The Financial Times and its journalism are subject to a self-regulation regime under the FT Editorial Code of Practice.
March 14, 2011 7:05 am
No Angel: The Secret Life of Bernie Ecclestone, by Tom Bower, Faber RRP £18.99, 432 pages
No Angel is an odd title for Tom Bower’s biography of the Formula One boss; surely nobody ever imagined that a former second-hand car dealer wrestled control of a competitive and fantastically rich sport by being nice?
Bower chronicles Ecclestone’s impoverished childhood, single-minded ambition, greed and sharp practice. Yet, the fact that the profoundly unsympathetic Ecclestone co-operated with the author, despite previous hatchet jobs on Maxwell, Branson and others, perhaps accounts for the oddly lenient tone. Only serious fans will follow the details of endless deals, feuds and extravagance among a group of mostly unpleasant, rich men, but the spice includes the sorry story of Ecclestone’s £1m donation to New Labour and the exposé of his friend Max Moseley’s use of prostitutes.
In Ecclestone’s own words, Formula One is “a quagmire of plagiarism, chicanery and petty rule violations”, in which “everyone cheats”. At least “he was always kind to his mother”.
Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2016. You may share using our article tools.
Please don't cut articles from FT.com and redistribute by email or post to the web.