A Headlines Today special investigation has revealed how Kalmadi turned India’s F1 dream into a family business. The excitement and glamour of F1 was all set to hit India, courtesy the IOA. Unfortunately the country’s top sports body let it slip out of its hands.

The story. And the man [wiki] who, in September 2008, walked out of a felicitation function for Olympics athletes because he wasn’t given a seat as prominent as he would have liked and who, a month later, was pro forma re-elected president of the IOC, a post he has held without a break from 1996 and which, thanks to the most recent ‘election’, he will hold through 2012.


9 thoughts on “Surprised?

  1. Suresh Kalmadi is a joke of a person. Typical of the way thing work at the IOC. If things are indeed so bad, why do not all the sportsmen/women talk up?

    On the other hand and apologies if this is a bit off topic, can you throw some light in to how does the host country earn revenues from F1 ? I was actually at the Belgian Grand Prix on Saturday and Yesterday. So, im curious to know this. Reason being, the crowd was amazing but the facilities or lack of it and that too in a country like Belgium was absolutely appalling. The circuit is beautiful but seems like nothing has been spent to improve facilities for the general public. If this is what a developed country like Belgium can put forth, im not so confident about India either. The crowd would be even larger and with all our middlemen thrown in, is it really worth it?

    • Anand

      You lucky bloke – you were at Spa ! A big regret during my time in central Europe was that I didn’t get a chance to head for the Belgian GP.

      To your query on how the host govt makes money – it’s easy ! Typically during a GP weekend, hotel room rates go up, are in short supply, everything from candy to beer is over priced.

      I was at Hockenheim four years ago and for a three day pass I spent € 175 on just the ticket, and then combining with my hotel rates and food expenses, I ended up spending in total € 500 ! Now that’s just me – so with the mass crowds at a GP as famous as Spa, you can imagine the money being spent. Of course a sizeable proportion goes to Bernie Ecclestone, but the rest is for the host country.

      The people who go to the general grandstands don’t expect too much – enough beer to slake their thirst and restrooms to relieve themselves. Both are not so hard to provide ! So bare minimum facilities is all they expect 🙂

  2. [Wicked snigger] Force India wins in the same week that our sports mantri’s statement ‘F1 is not a sport’ goes around the world, while real context i.e minister rejects ‘concession’ requests, is widely missed.
    Politics IS a family business, whether its sports or political succession!
    [Whisper in my head grows louder – there are no co-incidences!]

    • Very valid point. And I am not surprised to see this “coincidence.” 🙂

      F1 needs a new market now that their existing markets are dwindling.

  3. He is a joke. No point in taking him seriously. And the IOC is a defunct organization. The sports ministry should scrap this org and let athletes compete under some other formula that does not require a body like IOC.

      • Oh yes! Absolutely. But I do not see an alternative. Thought some years ago this Kalmadi guy and another potential aspirant to the IOC top post were at loggerheads that almost came to blows. not sure how Kalmadi managed to retain his iron grip after that incident.

        But I always thought that Kalmadi heading an org that produces one or a couple of bronzes every 4 years is not too big an issue to worry about. The best option out is to do away with the entire IOC thing – no point in funding something with so little returns.

    • Kalki,

      It is no longer a joke when there is so much corruption and pilfering involved.

      Ever wonder why jokers like Kalmadi do little for promotion of sports and sportspersons but campaign a lot for events like commonwealth games where there is a lot of money involved? Maybe someone should check if his son is involved in CW games as well.


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