Could Tamara's life in the fast lane hit Bernie's wallet?

Ms Ecclestone's excess causes Aussie MP to question Formula One subsidies

Sydney

Boasting a £45m London house complete with crystal bathtub,
massage parlour for her five dogs and a handbag collection valued
at £500,000, Tamara Ecclestone's lavish lifestyle may not be to
everyone's taste.

But it has now attracted the ire of an Australian MP, who yesterday accused Ms Ecclestone, daughter of Bernie, the Formula One chief executive, of benefiting from the 50m Australian dollars (£34m) that the Victorian state government spends on hosting the annual F1 Grand Prix in Melbourne on Sunday.

Having watched Channel Five's three-part documentary on the 27-year-old, which aired late last year, the Victoria MP, Kelvin Thomson, was full of scorn for her opulent lifestyle as he addressed the Australian parliament. "Her busy day includes taking [her] dogs to Harrods to have their hair sprayed and nails painted," Mr Thomson said. "There are better ways to spend A$50m, year in and year out, than bankrolling Bernie's billionaire bogan." In Australia, "bogan" is a disparaging term similar to "chav".

Ms Ecclestone, whose London home features a private bowling alley, an underground nightclub and a lift for her £370,000 Ferrari, hit back. In a reference to the documentary, she tweeted: "Surprised Kelvin Thompson [sic] has the time to watch and comment on #billiondollargirl being an MP."

But Mr Thomson refused to back down, saying that the high-profile model – who arranged a party for her stockbroker boyfriend, Omar Khyami, where guests ate sushi off a naked woman lying on a table – was fair game. "She's not some Greta Garbo, saying 'I want to be left alone'," he told the television programme Breakfast. "She is a willing, indeed enthusiastic, participant in charting this extravagant and self-indulgent lifestyle."

The MP called for a debate on whether Victorian taxpayers should continue to line the pockets of the Ecclestone family or whether the sponsorship money would be better spent on building a new school, helping flood-ravaged communities or constructing underground power lines – a recommendation of a Royal Commission into the deadly 2009 bushfires in Victoria.

Speaking about the programme, Billion $$ Girl, Mr Thomson said Ms Ecclestone "is shown supervising the refurbishment of her £45m home in London, which includes commissioning a £1m bathtub carved from Mexican crystal".

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