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Flavio Briatore says as a father he's done with flirting

Posted By: Staff

London, June 8 (ANI): Former Formula 1 boss Flavio Briatore says that with him becoming a father, he is done with flirting.

Two years ago, however, he finally settled down and married 30-year-old Wonderbra model Elisabetta Gregoraci, which may explain why he now finds the "playboy" tag irksome.

"If I become a priest tomorrow, people would still call me a playboy. But let me tell you something about women," he says, leaning forward. "It takes the same amount of effort to get a beautiful woman as it does to get an ugly one, so you might as well have a beautiful one," he says.ince his marriage and the birth of his baby, Falco, three months ago, fishing is off the agenda.

"I'm much calmer now," he volunteers.

Does he change nappies? "No, no," he is unable to restrain a sneer of disgust.

"That really is the woman's job. I'm good, but I'm not that good. Still, it's funny you know," he softens for a moment, baring an admirable set of porcelains.

"This little baby arrives and it changes your life, so you really need to respect your wife and your family."

He is still angry about events that took place a fortnight ago, when armed police seized his 17 million pound yacht - with his wife and two-month-old son aboard following a Miami Vice-style chase along the Italian Riviera.

He was chased because he reportedly owes 3.5 million pounds in unpaid taxes.

Briatore's face has the softened muscle tone of the very wealthy man, but his gaze is hard and unapologetic.

When asked about the controversies that have peppered his career, he simply shrugs.

"If you build something from nothing, there will always be jealousy. In 18 years, I won seven championships," he says.

He also says that he is now a family man and is done with flirting.

The son of two schoolteachers from Verzuolo, near Turin, says that he was determined never to be a schoolteacher.

"When you are born into a really small town, you feel that you have no options," he says. "But I wanted to be something different."

He became an entrepreneur at six. Fifty years on, Briatore can't remember how many cars he has ("two, three?"), is equally vague on the subject of houses, ("I have one in New York and one in London, then there is the Kenyan estate ...") and part owns Queens Park Rangers Football Club ("I was looking for an expensive hobby and I found one").

Having created the Billionaire brand in 1998, he now owns a club in Sardinia under that name, a line of Billionaire fashion and Cipriani's restaurant in Mayfair. The recession, he claims, didn't really make a dent in his empire.

"Billionaire is doing so well that we are opening one in Istanbul, Kazakhstan and Moscow," he says.

Briatore is also probably one of the largest supermodel collectors in the world, with a back catalogue that includes Elle Macpherson, Heidi Klum (with whom he had a child) and Naomi Campbell ("she's great, but better as a friend than a girlfriend"). (ANI)

Story first published: Tuesday, June 8, 2010, 15:31 [IST]
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