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Branson tops Ecclestone on rich list UPDATE Member Ric Johnson was the first to submit the correct answer: John Menard (Forbes est. $4.0Bil, down from $7.3Bil in 2007) Apparently this was not much of a surprise to as many people as we thought. We will try to make the next one a little harder!

04/26/10 Ed Note: Who is the richest man in racing? Send us your answer and you wont win a prize, but we will give you bragging rights and put your name here!

Virgin boss Richard Branson has overtaken Bernie Ecclestone to become the richest Briton in F1, according to the Sunday Times Rich List.

Branson’s personal wealth has been estimated at £2.6bn this year, up £1.4bn from last year as the end of the credit crunch has boosted Virgin’s revenues. He is 18th on the list.

Ecclestone, who is ranked 38th, sees his estimated wealth has slip by £91m to £1.375bn, largely because of the losses suffered by F1 during the credit crunch and because of the withdrawals of Honda, BMW and Toyota.

However that’s still far less than he lost last year following his divorce from Slavica Ecclestone. She remains valued at £734m this year, 84th on the list.

Other F1 names in the list include Allsport founder Paddy McNally, who sold the track signage company four years ago. He’s 113th, valued at £562m.

Martin Birrane of Lola, who have declined to apply for a place in F1 this year, is ranked 596th on £110m. So is the Marquess of Bute John Crichton-Stuart, known to F1 fans as Johnny Dumfries, who spent a single season in the sport in 1986 with Lotus.

Former McLaren team boss Ron Dennis is 758th on £87m, and now concentrating on the production of the MP4-12C road car.

Ex-Ferrari driver Eddie Irvine is 808th on £80m with much of his wealth coming from investments made after he left the sport in 2002.

Finally Frank Williams has entered the top 1,000 at 967th on £65m. Outside the top 1,000 are David Coulthard on £45m, plus Flavio Briatore, Earl of March, Nicola Foulston, Jody Scheckter and David Richards. These changes may be due to alterations in their wealth or because they have moved outside of Britain.

An expanded version of the 2010 Rich List will be published on the Sunday Times’ website later this week

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