Farmers plan protest at Indian Grand Prix

F1 Fanatic round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

In the round-up: Indian Grand Prix organisers pour scorn on a threatened by local farmers.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Farmers threaten India’s debut F1 race (Bangkok Post)

“‘This whole thing is a big joke,’ said an executive from the company who did not want to be named. ‘People should not be taking these threats seriously. There is so much riding on the race for the company and the country, do you think we will allow a handful of farmers to spoil it?'”

Keith Collantine via Twitter

“Writing an article for the FIA’s Institute Quarterly magazine. Look out for it in their next issue.”

Via the F1 Fanatic live Twitter app

Schumacher?s battle bus goes under the hammer (The Daily Telegraph)

“Designed by Pininfarina, this Iveco Domino HDH coach is offered at no reserve, with an estimated price of between ??200,000 and ??300,000. The high-roof coach was used by the F1 team during the Schumacher/Barrichello years of 2001?ǣ2005, when Schumacher won the last four of his seven world championships.”

Mark Webber via Twitter

“I’m hearing about a misquote about my plans to fight for the title next year, always possible to miss/add a few words for a good story…”

Via the F1 Fanatic live Twitter app

Interview with Sam Michael (, PDF)

“The low-line gearbox and extreme driveshaft angles were certainly the benchmark if you’re pushing the design in that direction. I expect to see some elements of the design on other cars in 2012, regardless of the fact that it wasn’t a big enough differentiator to make the Williams a strong car this year. the design was to enable the rear lower wing to work most effectively.”

Thanks Petr Hlawiczka for the tip

Anthony Davidson via Twitter

“I reckon to make things harder for himself, Vet should drive the entire race with ‘that finger’ in the air.”

Via the F1 Fanatic live Twitter app

Williams F1 Confirms Attendance at Aspire 4 Sport Congress (Williams)

“Sir Frank and at least one of the Williams F1 drivers will attend the conference.”

Follow F1 news as it breaks using the F1 Fanatic live Twitter app.

Comment of the day

Journeyer on Jenson Button’s debt to Ross Brawn:

Man, he should be thanking Ross Brawn a million times over for saving BAR/Honda/BGP/Mercedes. That was the difference between: 10 GP wins, a long-term McLaren deal, and being a world champion; and a Renault F1 drive with a handful of podiums and an utter lack of success.

From the forum

Part discussion point on the British Car Championship, part excuse to show off one of my favourite new features on the site – video embedding in the forum:

Site updates

In case you’ve got this far without having noticed, a lot of new changes were introduced on the site yesterday. Read all about them here:

One glitch I have noticed with the site is your avatar may not be working correctly if you previously uploaded it via Gravatar. You can fix this by uploading your avatar via you profile (My Account > Profile > Change Avatar).

I am aware of a few other problems including, most significantly, the menu not working properly on the mobile site. These are being looked into.

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to gaston_pdu!

On this day in F1

Emerson Fittipaldi won his second drivers’ championship title on this day in 1974.

But the season finale at Watkins Glen was marred by a crash that claimed the life of Surtees driver Helmuth Koinigg.

63 comments on “Farmers plan protest at Indian Grand Prix”

  1. Can’t you reveal what will the article for Institute Quartely be about, Keith? I’m curious now. Very curious!

    1. @joao-pedro-cq It’s on the subject of increasing the popularity of motor racing and it’s part of a group of three opinion pieces that subject. I believe one of the others is being written by Tony Fernandes.

      I will have it on the site after it’s been published.

  2. Farmers threaten India’s debut F1 race

    This is indeed become a joke and a cheeky way to make money in the heat of the moment.

    1. Hm, from what i read earlier about this, a lot is coming from selling their land, having money, but spending it unwisely, combined with the fact the track makes it a long trip to school indeed, turning kids off going.

      But reacting to it this way

      “This whole thing is a big joke,” said an executive from the company who did not want to be named.

      “People should not be taking these threats seriously. There is so much riding on the race for the company and the country, do you think we will allow a handful of farmers to spoil it?

      “We have spent $400 million dollars on the race and we will spend a few millions more if needed to have adequate security in place. We will do whatever it takes to have a wonderful event.”

      is not really the right way forward, I think.

      1. No, it’s not @BasCB It’s just a good way to antagonise them further. I appreciate their frustration but they should work together, not against each other. I guess some sort of subsidies would have been nice.

        1. the problem is that most of the protest are backed by political parties which have vested interest in showing the ruling govt in poor light and make it look that they are anti poor or in this matter anti farmer. and none of these protest are making headlines news in India. so far i feel it’s nothing too serious…

    2. In the US “Tea Party” was joke, then “Occupy Wall St” was the newest joke.. Now both movements are gaining (weirdly) some respect tough.


      Occupy Buddh International Circuit!

  3. Not sure if I like the changes to F1 Fanatic’s website. I liked the old one. And I dont mean this in the sense of “facebook has changed, everybody hates it and wishes it was dead” sort of dislike ;)

    Still, for as long as the content is good, I dont mind!

    1. I’m sure you will get used to it @James :)

      1. He, @andrewtanner cought out by the username there! For him to get that it should have been @jamesf1 !

  4. haha davidson is one+ who hates THE FINGER. I personally don’t think it’s that bad. Alonso had that silly style of celebrating like pushing honks or something like making mouths… he also used to count his victories… Schum had the podium jump, Massa had a “fist for everyone” when he used to win… so what? I mean these drivers are full of concentration and stress for more than an hour, let them celebrate anyway they want

    1. F1 celebrations are pretty lame compared to the MotoGP riders.

      1. Agreed. Lorenzo was a good example of having a different victory celebration.

      2. Don’t the FIA have rules preventing the drivers from celebrating on track ? The drivers aren’t allowed to do donuts, stop for flags or anything like that any more and this is why the celebrations are always a bit lame.

        1. I despise donuts from an F1 car, they make me cringe, so i’m quite glad! @beneboy

  5. There doesn’t seem to be a lot that the unnamed ‘executive’ had to say in defence concerning the farmers being short changed for their land. Just seems they’ll bombard the issue with money and more money to sort of mask over it. I’m really excited about this Grand Prix, but this needs to get sorted beforehand, I think.

    1. I’m both amused and sad about his response. But what’s more amusing is he’s willing to spend “millions” on security, but not compensating a few poor farmers? Methinks he has not thought this problem through thoroughly.

      1. That was the exact point i was about to make!

  6. pictures from the buddh international circuit

    1. thanks for posting those. Seems there is still quite some work to do to make everything look slick. But the most important things are in place for the race.

      1. I guess so @BasCB, and the organizers have 3 weeks time to wrap things up although it wont be in a chick shape like the Abu Dhabi circuit.

        We still dont know what’s the resolution with the customs duty issue?

        1. I think there were some steps taken by the promotors to solve that tax issue, but as far as I know, nothing is resolved yet.

          As for the buildings, they are going to look pretty bare inside and arount the grandstands people will hope it won’t rain too much not to get lost in the mud!

  7. Keith, for some reason I can’t get my avatar to work.

    1. Never mind, I’ve got it working now.

      1. you’ve been playing around with the avatar today, is that the second or third one?

        1. @Prisoner-Monkeys I like this avatar much better. :)

  8. COTD! Thanks, Keith. :)

    1. Well earned!

    2. @journeyer well done! Also, I see the avatars have a blank space on the right – problem?

  9. The Vettel finga is nothing new, but the way Vettel sweeps it across has a certain style which is now rather symbolic. Irritating to most simply because he’s been winning too much. Whatever, it has character to it.

    India: Oh no not again! Over dramatic or for real. Bernie, it’s not positive.

  10. Haha! I’m doing an assignment at my college on Motorsport Logistics I think I might use that Ferrari bus as an example of track side accommodation! :P

    1. What college is that?! I want to go to there :-D

      1. Gateshead College in North East England :) It’s a Motorsport course and we have two Formula Fords that we maintain and race, as well as other do other Motorsport stuff. It’s pretty cool :D

  11. The Indian GP is beginning to resemble the Commonwealth Games. A massive farce…

    1. i was thinking the same thing

  12. I doubt it’s just a cheeky way to make money in the heat of the moment, icemangrins. It’s far more likely that the farmers were forced off their land with minimal compo along with a move-or-die option.

    After the Comm Games debacle with many Aussie companies who were involved still waiting to get paid or being sued through the Indian courts on spurious claims in a hope that they will just go away, all I can imagine is a bucket of press stories about the disaster at Buddh.

    I really wish them well and look forward to the race but on past experience you’d have to be very optomistic to say that this will be incident free.

    Most Comm Games people say that India is an acronym for “I’ll Never Do It Again” – remember that Bernie.

    1. Commonwealth games were run by govt and being one of the most corrupt countries in world, all things that can go wrong had happened. While govt has no role in buddh circuit. so don’t try to make stereotype out of one event.

      why many aussie companies are not getting paid is that they involved in some kind of bribing to get contracts & they are getting taken to court now.

      1. Rest assured, greed is prevalent in all societies and countries, and its not just India that is corrupt.
        Following are some sample examples of recent stories from western countries (most F1 fans on this site belong to these)

        If indeed the western countries were paragon of virtues and no corruption, malpractices existed in these countries, the world wouldn’t be in economic disarray.

        What probably Indians/Asians lack is finesse to institutionalize corruption at Government, and corporate level.

        1. On contrary – While I fully agree that the world is full of corrupt governments, administrations, bussinesses etc., this does not mean India is not suffering from a pretty bad case, or as Raj stated it, India is

          one of the most corrupt countries in world

          so part of the grudge from the farmers may indeed lie there and its certain that was a big part of the background for the Commonwealth games fiasco.

          1. What probably Indians/Asians lack is finesse to institutionalize corruption at Government, and corporate level.

            What I said was western countries have institutionalized the “lobbyists” entertain the decision makers in government. On contrary India/Asia aspire for “zero corruption”, but the inherent human greed and urge to abuse one’s power to satisfy greed ultimately takes toll of the politicians and bureaucrats and the country gets bad reputation.

            If Indian Parliament makes the lobbyist firms legal and make it legal for their Senators and congressman to accept “Gifts”, “Fees” up to a designated price tier as it is a common practice in the Western country. Suddenly there will be a paradigm shift on how we look at India.

            Point to note that the overspending and inflated prices associated with project related to the common wealth games became public and media spread it around the globe, as compared to the irregularities in hosting Athens Olympics and Beijing Olympics.
            In case of former Greeks realized the connection too late :(

  13. We shouldn’t read too much in to this farmers protest. These kind of threats are quite common in india these days. It is probably to do with population dependence on agriculture (70% of indians depend on that). so when company acquires land for development, they pay some premium to market price and land is still agricultural based, the price will not be that high. But once the buyers start developing, the land price tend to appreciate & farmers feel aggrieved that they sold land for dirt cheap and these kind of threats tend to keep prop up. It seems the hysteria around indian grand prix doesn’t get over until all 5 red lights go off on 30t oct :)

    1. A couple of weeks back (after the first reports of “unrest”) a reporter visited those villages (article was in the roundup here). Seems its part losing their scope in life without the land, as well as losing the will to work when they have quite a lot of money at hand (spending it on consumption and cars) and the fact the local school is now quite a busride away.
      But I understood its not small change they were payed here, just no one gave a thought about helping to spend it wisely.

      1. I really wonder if it is actually some sort of “unrest” or one farmer standing infront of the place with a flag and that has been exaggerated. Because it would’ve come on the local channels and it hasn’t. And besides, that’s how it works around here. It’s sort of a mindset that you have to protest, if you want to be heard. It’s not really that big a deal.

      2. That’s what I read too @Raj

        Farmers have built big houses and bought SUV’s with the money they got and looks like they need more.. atleast that’s how I read it.

  14. Let’s hope the farmers get a good deal

  15. Love the updates Keith! Well done on continuing to make the site move forwards.

    One thing I noticed though… there’s a ‘favorite’ button. ‘Favourite’ surely?

    1. I was waiting for someone to spot that!

      There is a fix in place for that but I’m not able to apply it at the moment.

      1. What’s the point of the button, and the bold is a bit garish.

        1. @formula-1 To keep track of stuff you like. In the future it could be used to create an “F1 Fanatics’ favourites” section.

      2. I’d really like to use the “Favourite” feature, but I can’t find it. OMG, am I really that myope or has it been removed until the fix is in place?

        1. when you click on the name of the poster, it opens the post in their profile’s activity overview and it has a favourite button below it (next to the “report user” button)

      3. I bet nobody would have spotted it if I weren’t incredibly pedantic!

  16. Ive been to india

  17. Raj, I like your optomism and hope that Buddh is as clean as you suggest, it will do a world of good for the perception of Indian business.

  18. Is it me or is there anyone else under the impression that the circuit is way too much far from finished with just just 3 weeks to go? Certainly worse than Korea a year ago.

    What is wrong with organizers these days? I also remember Interlagos had his fair amount of issues getting the last bunch FIA-required improvements for track and facilities a while ago. (Although It probably was due to lack of funding at the time, I don’t recall exactly)

    There are also the news about Austin. The trend seems to be that once the new venue is confirmed and on calendar, organizers starts slacking off.

    The last time I was really impressed with how a new venue got prepared for the debut, and how everything gave the feeling it was there for quite some time was Malaysia 1999.

    1. As for Austin, the Statesmen reported they were starting to go at it again in Texas.

      I think the big difference between the Indian track and Korea last year is the focus they had on making the track surface itself fine in India, and leaving the buildings for last. Korea had big trouble doing the track itself, which is far more dangerous for the race.

      1. You’re right, of course it’s better to secure the tarmac first. But that was not the only thing left out in Korea last year. I’m almost sure to remember that the facilities inside the layout of the track, namely the artificial lake and a few other things were not completed on schedule for the race. They promised they will last year.

      2. Ops. They promised they will this year.

  19. I really hope the Indian GP is as good as it looks on F1 2011, I know it is only a game but the track reminds me of Magny Cours and looks like a good track to drive. I hope they can make it go smoothly and that they get some character into the race.

  20. Nice new avatar for the nice new updates – I couldn’t find the (Mclaren MP4-)26 image I’d been using all season :(

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