Until about a week ago, you'd probably never heard of Bernie Ecclestone. This is because you're probably an American, and you don't pay any attention to Formula One Racing, the organization Ecclestone is the president and CEO of. A friend of ours who knows Formula One much better than we do says Ecclestone is beloved by F1 fans, because he's smart, quirky and loves to make strange jokes that no one outside racing gets.
So we're tempted to give him the benefit of the doubt on his recent comments about Indy racing star-of-the-moment Danica Patrick. When asked about Patrick — whom F1 is rumored to be pursuing for their tour — he said, "You know I've got one of those wonderful ideas ... women should be dressed in white like all the other domestic appliances." Now, we just assume this is a joke, because if your domestic appliances are anything like ours, they're mostly green, brown and some strange dark tint of orange.
Ecclestone is also under fire for the disaster at the United States Grand Prix this weekend. We don't know him well enough to be sure he'll be able to take the heat, but anybody who can get away with saying the following — which he told a journalist in February 2000 when previously asked about women in racing — seems like to be able to hang on for a long time.
"She would have to be a woman who was blowing away the boys. ... What I would really like to see happen is to find the right girl, perhaps a black girl with super looks, preferably Jewish or Muslim, who speaks Spanish."
We're told he was kidding then too. We hope.