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F1 commercial director Bratches to leave

Sean Bratches is stepping down as managing director of the Formula One Group at the end of January (AFP Photo/CLIVE MASON)

Paris (AFP) - Sean Bratches, a member of the management triumvirate that runs Formula One, will quit as managing director of commercial operations at the end of January, F1 announced on Monday.

"After three years in this role, Sean has decided to return to the United States to be closer to his family," F1 said in a statement.

Bratches will continue in an advisory role.

He joined F1 in a newly created position when Liberty Media bought the operation from Briton Bernie Ecclestone in 2017.

At the time, another American Chase Carey was appointed CEO and British engineer and former team manager Ross Brawn became sporting and technical director.

Bratches' job was to increase revenue and, said the statement, to transform the sport into a "world-class business group."

It went on to say that Bratches had succeeded.

"All key metrics including race attendance, television viewership, and digital and social media engagement and usage have increased during his tenure."

Bratches, who before joining F1 had spent more than 25 years at ESPN, helped marry F1 with Netflix for the popular documentary series "Drive to survive".

"I leave Formula 1 in a better position than when I joined," Bratches said in the statement.