QPR takeover talk cooled

MOTORSPORT tycoon Bernie Ecclestone yesterday played down talk of Lakshmi Mittal, Britain’s richest man, taking full control of football club Queen’s Park Rangers.

Formula One boss Ecclestone, who owns 62 per cent of the west London club, compared the situation to Rupert Murdoch’s recent interest in buying CVC, which owns the commercial rights to F1. “Mittal put a statement out to say he was going to buy all the shares on Monday [today],” said Ecclestone, who owns 62 per cent of the newly-promoted Premier League outfit.

“But it’s a bit like these Murdoch people saying they’re going to buy CVC. They have forgotten to ask if it’s for sale.”

Indian steel magnate Mittal currently holds a minority stake in QPR. Ecclestone, 80, has previously said former chairman Flavio Briatore has first refusal on his shares.