Left field

The Reuters global sports blog

Why Ferrari is Formula One

One month on, and it appears to be all over. Ferrari won. In the war of the brands, it was no contest. And, in the end, it was Bernie Ecclestone who saw the writing on the wall for F1, too.

After a Paris breakfast with Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo on Wednesday, he told FIA president Max Mosley it was over. No more crusades, no more rows over rules and no more daft outbursts. Ecclestone had to save the F1 brand, protect the investment of CVC Capital and his own interests, and make sure his old friend and ally knew what to expect: Game Over, Max.

Even if Mosley is now threatening to stay in his post after being angered by some team comments to the press, really, we should have all seen his exit coming.

This is what Ferrari wrote on their own website on Monday: “Maranello, 22nd June 2009 – The British magazine SportsPro published a list of the world’s 200 most valuable sports properties. The Team Ferrari is the highest ranked European team property, place seven overall, behind the big US-American organisations such as NFL, MLB and NBA. Ferrari is followed by Manchester United Football Club and Formula 1. The classification has been set up using various factors such as the balance, the brand name’s prestige and other factors.”

Monaco madness

You can charter Flavio Briatore’s Force Blue ‘yacht’ for $235,000 a week during the low season. For that, you get five decks, a gymnasium, Turkish steam bath, cinema and cabin space for 12 guests.

There’s also a mud bath and massage room.

Unfortunately it’s not available during Monaco Grand Prix week, but then life is full of disappointments.

Ferrari boss not a fan of television

Angry Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo smashed a television at the end of last season after watching Lewis Hamilton snatch the title off Felipe Messa on the final bend in Brazil.

Now more TV sets are in jeopardy given his team have gone from Formula One champions to a laughing stock after just two races of the new season.