Flavio Briatore looks set to officially return to F1 in 2013 It seems that formerly-banned team principal Flavio Briatore has flagged a definite date to return to the F1 stage: the year 2013.

The former Renault boss was issued with a – later renegotiated – lifetime ban by the FIA for his role in the ‘Crashgate’ scandal, has told the Times of India: “We shall see how my return to F1 goes in 2013.”

The 60-year-old Italian has been a rather present figure at several F1 events this year, and is seen to hold a close alliance with Bernie Ecclestone. This has led to speculation that Briatore may later hold a significant role within Formula 1, with roles with Pirelli, Ferrari or a role within Formula One Management being the subject of speculation.

But Briatore was quick to rule out any role in team management, telling the Journal du Dimanche: “I have drawn a line under the role of team boss, but that does not mean I am saying goodbye to F1. Far from it.”

Briatore – who still presides in a managerial role for Red Bull driver Mark Webber – indicated that his interests lie in the “commercial” or “business” sides of Formula 1, which has in turn triggered rumours that he could be a successor for Ecclestone himself.

No doubt that will be music to the ears of every team boss up and down the pit lane!

However, Ecclestone has inferred that the only way he will leave the sport is in a pine box, and suggested he will still be running the sport in another ten years’ time.

[Original image via AUTOSPORT]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.