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Bernie Ecclestone pulls no punches with satirical Christmas Card

updated 11:49 AM EST, Fri December 19, 2014
Formula One driver Esteban Gutierrez goes airborne after crashing with Pastor Maldonado during the Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday, April 6. He was not injured. Formula One driver Esteban Gutierrez goes airborne after crashing with Pastor Maldonado during the Bahrain Grand Prix on Sunday, April 6. He was not injured.
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What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 amazing sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 amazing sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 amazing sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
What a shot! 75 sports moments from 2014
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone shows his sense of humor
  • His annual Christmas card pokes fun at court case he was forced to settle
  • Ecclestone had to pay $100m in legal settlement in Germany
  • 84-year-old recently re-appointed to F1 commercial board

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(CNN) -- His reputation might be that of Formula One's ruthless wheeler dealer, but come the season of goodwill Bernie Ecclestone likes to show a different side to his character.

The 84-year-old billionaire's annual Christmas card has often been a way for Ecclestone to get things off his chest and his 2014 offering was no exception as he took aim at a legal case that has cost him $100 million.

The card depicts him handing over that sum of money to a highway robber, who is pointing a pistol at him.

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"This is not a robbery, I am collecting for the Bavarian state," says the man on horseback while a cartoon figure of Ecclestone is seen clutching the sack of money.

The greeting on the inside of the card contains says: "Maybe now we can have a Formula One race in the really nice city of Munich (state capital of Bavaria), Germany."

Earlier this year, a German court agreed to end the bribery trial, in which Ecclestone stood accused, in exchange for a $100m settlement, with $99m going to the Bavarian state treasury and the remainder to a children's charity.

Ecclestone, who had strongly denied the charges, was later quoted as saying he was a "bit of an idiot" for paying out the huge sum, particularly as he believed he would eventually be cleared.

Even by settling the 84-year-old was only left with a small dent -- he paid the $100m within a week -- in his reported $4 billion fortune.

Money has often been a theme of previous Ecclestone's Christmas cards.

Reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton was the butt of the F1 chief's humor in 2012 after the driver's surprise switch from McLaren to Mercedes.

The card showed Hamilton jumping into a Mercedes car driven by Niki Lauda, with the passenger seat containing a large bag marked with a dollar sign.

Though world champion Hamilton arguably might be having the last laugh given his recent drivers' title triumph.

Getting the tone right for an annual Christmas card isn't always easy to negotiate.

Former British Premier Tony Blair has been widely ridiculed for his 2014 card, which shows him standing next to his wife Cherie but smiling in intense and uncomfortable fashion.

"The stuff of nightmares" someone tweeted.

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