Thursday, June 14, 2007

Formula 1 and the ridiculousness of hosting an event!

In an aside, about a topic I care deeply about but see massive amounts of ineptitude all the time.
Tomorrow the papers will carry the news as a 'Famous Victory', but I see see it quite simply as a colossal waste of money. A part of me is still hoping that this is another crazy statement from Suresh Kalmadi, but, despite being an avowed F1 fan and a convert to the Church of Hamilton, I think hosting a F1 event is a great way to lose money, or conversely put money in Bernie Ecclestone's pocket.
See, I must state at the outset that Suresh Kalmadi has done nothing for Indian sports, and I put him and Priya Ranjan Das Munshi on the same page as being destroyers of sport, rather than 'lovers of sport' as they claim. For Gods sake, we won what, one medal in Athens, nd will be lucky to get beyond two in Beijing. While Delhi gets a (much needed) makeover for the 2010 Commonwealth games, what is the betting that the Australians, who have a population equivalent to that of Greater Bombay won't kick us in our balls?
FIFA ranks India 161 in the world in football/soccer, behind St Lucia (a country with a population of 150,000) and ahead of Laos! I hate to say it, but even I am sniggering. The greatest failure of successive governments in the country has been in Sports - so much so that heading sports associations is the exclusive privilege of politicians. Sharad Pawar and his cronies are doing the same to cricket, Jagmohan Dalmiya as the Devil? That man was a Saint compared to this bunch of goons! But, the two men I named earlier are the real villains of the piece, and in another country to our East, they would have been executed by now for ineptitude.
See, don't get me wrong, I love driving, I love speed and I (along with the Anglo-centric English media) think that Lewis Hamilton is the greatest thing to happen to Formula1 since Michael Schumacher, but there is neither any economic rationale for F1, just look at the huge cost that Malaysia has had to incur for building Sepang and hosting a race that barely anyone watches. However, Lewis Hamilton is destined for greatness because his father spotted his talent at a young age - and that can only happen if a country has racing infrastructure from the ground.
Hamilton's father Anthony was truly middle-class in Britain, he had to work three jobs at times to keep his son's dream alive, and thank god that he did. But Lewis Hamilton, who is 22 mind you, the same age as India's current crop of budding star racers, all rich men's sons, managed to go small carting tracks and racing circuits across the UK, and fair enough Ron Dennis of McLaren spotted him, but the infrastructure for making him a star was already there. See, before signing off $100 million to Bernie, spend that money on building quality carting tracks and a few good racetracks, maybe not F1 grade, but racetracks where we could maybe consider training some drivers.
And for God's sake, Mr Kalmadi, bringing Formula 1 in on government money, are you crazier than I thought?Hopefully, the baller in the Sports Ministry will over-rule, I'm no fan of that man either, but he keeps this crazy in check! Spend money improving our sporting facilities, instead of doing that - or paying a cokehead to do a show in Melbourne, as you did last year! Spend money on sport, proper sport, like that country to our East. Because Sport is a tremendous glue that holds the social fabric in place. And maybe, just maybe, if I ever come to power I won't have you shot for treason, because in failing Indian sport, that is exactly what you have done. As for Priya Ranjan Das Munshi, he isn't even worth expending spit on!
A couple of more things tomorrow, the first of them is that there is no massive 'Media Conspiracy' to prevent certain news items of appearing! The second is the crisis at the Indian Express!


TYLER < > said...

...any opposition to the aforesaid plan is being seen as treachery and against national will....bah!
Look how the congress isolated Mani Aiyer after his opposition to the asian games.

Ilahabaad akbar said...

What's the shit on express. I know Neel er... Manini quit. What else?

Consumer said...

Well said, I am glad someone has written, even oif on a blog, to stop Kalmadi's mad and corrupt ideas. The fact is, Bernie is losing credibility in his region so fast, he can't wait to move into desperate Asia, which happens to be able to afford his overpriced crap finally. And Kalmadi is most definitely getting a cut on it. Bernie is the guy who has perfected the art of stashing his wealth on every tax exempt island you can name...

Anonymous said...

i have been reading your posts for about two months, and i must say that you've been changing!

but what does our ethical journalist, oh what does our ethical jooooooounalist think of the world?

open your eyes mister, there are more important things in life than posting of the crises in stupid indian newpapers...

and stop posing...

and let me tell you of a person who's doing serious work... who doesn't care to call herself a journalist...

she's an iraqi blogger who is doing risky work during the war...

if you're interested, here's her URL:

but i sincerely hope you do change!

Anonymous said...

Mmmyes. You're right that the incessant politicking has fucked any hope of sporting excellence in this country.

An American Journalist in India once asked me how the Indian Cricket Team was selected. After I'd explained to him, he was shocked. Shocked to find out a committee of people who'd never played the game made the call.

But I don't think the problem is the lack of money in sports. There are poorer countries which do way better than India in sport.

Heck, the BCCI's earnings are probably way more than their GDP.

I think the problem is that we simply don't have a sporting culture and attitude. A while back I had the pleasure of speaking to Boria Mazumdar, a sports historian.

He admitted his embarrassment at having his country perform terribly in sport in all disciplines at virtually all forums.

Sports has usually been discouraged by parents of most middle class generations in this country. "Work to become an engineer, doctor, pilot, whatever. Sports will not get you anywhere."

Sports, if anything, is seen as a way to get into college without the requisite marks in school. The sports quota. What a racket! Or a job as a TT in the Railways.

Sports culture and attitude. Mr. Mazumdar tellingly pointed out that in countries like Australia and the US, people have a culture of playing sport. They may not excel at it, but everybody, everybody plays something. Especially Australia. Beach Volleyball, surfing, cricket whatever.

Brazil isn't a terribly rich country, but any other country would have a tough time beating them in football. Everybody plays.

Even Cameroon. Didn't they once lose their entire football team in an aircrash? They're still pretty high up.

The Ethiopian, Kenyan, Moroccan (Have I got that right?) long distance runners. None of those guys inherited a trust fund, nor could their countries ever give them luxuries to compare with the rich western world.

We're a physically lazy country. It has a lot to do with our upbringing which rubbishes sport.

All the same, I'd like to hear the sound of those F1 engines roaring through Chanakyapuri, Akbar Road and Rajpath.

An aside to Anonymous. Try Riverbend's blog.


Vivek said...

Other than the known fact that the fate of sports in India is doomed, thanks to our politicians, even the very idea of bringing Formula One to India is crazy, crazier than Vijay Mallya's proposal to turn Rajpath into a street circuit.

As a devoted F1 fan and somebody who has regularly written about the sport in the Indian media, making this huge task possible in just two years is, to simply say, wildly optimistic. Running F1 in India will prove to be bad publicity for Mr. E when teams and tourists alike start complaining about the sub-standard facilities and Delhi's VIP culture.

Anonymous said...

So, what's the crisis at the Indian Express?

Peter Parker said...

Its great about the win formula1 driving course. about the cars. In my opinion sportsmanship would prevail for the continuity of the game and always play for true spirit.