Tuesday 22 August 2017

Bernie Ecclestone's daughter Petra in bitter divorce with husband of six years...with billions at stake

Petra Ecclestone and James Stunt attend the presentation of the Petra Ecclestone menswear collection at The Corner on September 17, 2009 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Florian Seefried/Getty Images)
Petra Ecclestone and James Stunt attend the presentation of the Petra Ecclestone menswear collection at The Corner on September 17, 2009 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Florian Seefried/Getty Images)
Petra Ecclestone and boyfriend James Stunt attend the presentation of the Petra Ecclestone menswear collection at The Corner on September 17, 2009 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Florian Seefried/Getty Images)
Formula One owner Bernie Ecclestone's daugter Petra (R) leaves her hotel in central Rome, on August 26, 2011. Petra will marry James Stunt, at the Odescalchi castle in Bracciano, near Rome, on August 27. AFP PHOTO/ TIZIANA FABI (Photo credit should read TIZIANA FABI/AFP/Getty Images)
Tamara Ecclestone, Bernie Ecclestone and Petra Ecclestone arrive at the European premiere of "Batman Begins" at the Odeon Leicester Square on June 12, 2005 in London, England. (Photo by MJ Kim/Getty Images)
Caitlin McBride

Caitlin McBride

Billionaire socialite Petra Eccelstone is engaged in bitter divorce proceedings with her husband of six years James Stunt.

The 28-year-old, who is the daughter of Formula One boss Bernie Ecclestone, appeared in court on Wednesday for the first divorce hearing where the family's €2.6bn fortune is at stake.

Petra looked drawn as she joined her father at the Central Family Court yesterday, where it's reported her estranged husband, an art dealer, was warned by the judge to stop his "distracting" behaviour in court and called his former father-in-law a "c***" under his breath, according to the Daily Mail.

In 2011, Stunt and Ecclestone exchanged vows in lavish fashion - in Odescalchi Castle in Rome in front of 350 guests, where Eric Clapton, David Guetta and the Black Eyed Peas performed in an incredible €12m celebration.

Petra Ecclestone and boyfriend James Stunt attend the presentation of the Petra Ecclestone menswear collection at The Corner on September 17, 2009 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Florian Seefried/Getty Images)
Petra Ecclestone and boyfriend James Stunt attend the presentation of the Petra Ecclestone menswear collection at The Corner on September 17, 2009 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Florian Seefried/Getty Images)

Together, they have an impressive property portfolio: a palatial home in Los Angeles worth $200m, the largest residence in a city built on large residences and a mansion in London's Chelsea worth €100m, where Petra is now residing with their children.

They have three children together - Lavinia (four) and twins James Jr and Andres (two).

Read more: Who is Petra Ecclestone? 8 things to know about the woman at the centre of the divorce of the decade

Before their wedding, Mr Stunt signed a pre-nuptial agreement agreeing to a settlement of €17m in the event they divorced. The proceedings will begin in the High Court next month.

Petra's relationship has never been far from the spotlight since their first date in 2006 - the couple were often pictured together at glitzy events around the world and their wedding was one of the most talked about in decades.

Even her father Bernie said he found the €12m excessive, admitting his ex-wife Slavica footed the bill for the bash.

Formula One owner Bernie Ecclestone's daugter Petra (R) leaves her hotel in central Rome, on August 26, 2011. Petra will marry James Stunt, at the Odescalchi castle in Bracciano, near Rome, on August 27. AFP PHOTO/ TIZIANA FABI (Photo credit should read TIZIANA FABI/AFP/Getty Images)
Formula One owner Bernie Ecclestone's daugter Petra (R) leaves her hotel in central Rome, on August 26, 2011. Petra will marry James Stunt, at the Odescalchi castle in Bracciano, near Rome, on August 27. AFP PHOTO/ TIZIANA FABI (Photo credit should read TIZIANA FABI/AFP/Getty Images)

"My younger daughter got married and I thought, as father of the bride, I should pay for the wedding," he said in 2011.

"But when it was suggested how much they would be spending on drinks, I thought it was absurd, and I managed to upset my daughter and my wife.

"Then she spent in excess of £12million on my daughter's wedding, which I did not know about until afterwards."

Slavica famously said after: "It was worth every penny because it made my daughter happy. Who cares about money?"

Online Editors

Also in this section