Olympic bids

‘I have always dreamed big’: New IOA chief Narinder Batra wants to bid for 2032 Olympics

The Indian Olympic Association will also take a proposal to the government to host the 2030 Asiad and 2026 Commonwealth Games.

India’s new Olympics chief Narinder Batra has vowed to make bids to stage the 2032 Olympics, 2030 Asian Games or 2026 Commonwealth Games, saying the country must “think big”.

Batra, who is also the International Hockey Federation president, said after winning the Indian Olympic Association vote late Thursday that an approach would be made to the Indian government for financial backing.

“Once I settle down, the IOA will take a proposal to the government to host the 2032 Olympics, 2030 Asiad and 2026 CWG. We should think big but hosting these Games depends on the government as they will sanction the funds,” he said.

“I have always dreamed big and this is my personal view that India should host these big events.”

When New Delhi staged the 2010 Commonwealth Games, they were marked by construction delays, failing infrastructure and accusations of financial mismanagement.

But India is now one of the world’s fastest growing major economies, and international sporting chiefs say it must be a contender to hold major events.

India’s sporting relations with arch-rival neighbour Pakistan could prove a sticking point, however.

Batra said he opposed any bilateral contests against Pakistan. The two dispute Kashmir territory, while India accuses Pakistan of supporting “terrorism”.

“As far as multilateral events organised by the international federations are concerned, we have to play Pakistan. But I think it is not possible to play them in bilateral events unless relations between the two countries are improved.

“Moreover their behaviour at the border will have to improve. Everybody in India is an Indian first.”

As India’s hockey chief, Batra suspended matches against Pakistan after a 2014 Champions Trophy semi-final which Pakistan won. India accused the Pakistani players of making obscene gestures to the Indian crowd.

Batra overwhelmingly won the contest for the IOA presidency, but a Delhi court is still to review the vote.

Support our journalism by subscribing to Scroll+ here. We welcome your comments at letters@scroll.in.
Sponsored Content BY 

What are racers made of?

Grit, strength and oodles of fearlessness.

Sportspersons are known for their superhuman discipline, single-minded determination and the will to overcome all obstacles. Biographies, films and documentaries have brought to the fore the behind-the-scenes reality of the sporting life. Being up at the crack of dawn, training without distraction, facing injuries with a brave face and recovering to fight for victory are scenes commonly associated with sportspersons.

Racers are no different. Behind their daredevilry lies the same history of dedication and discipline. Cornering on a sports bike or revving up sand dunes requires the utmost physical endurance, and racers invest heavily in it. It helps stave off fatigue and maintain alertness and reaction time. It also helps them get the most out of their racecraft - the entirety of a racer’s skill set, to which years of training are dedicated.

Racecraft begins with something as ‘simple’ as sitting on a racing bike; the correct stance is the key to control and manoeuvre the bike. Riding on a track – tarmac or dirt is a great deal different from riding on the streets. A momentary lapse of concentration can throw the rider into a career ending crash.

Physical skill and endurance apart, racers approach a race with the same analytical rigour as a student appearing in an exam. They conduct an extensive study of not just the track, but also everything around it - trees, marshal posts, tyre marks etc. It’s these reference points that help the racer make braking or turning decisions in the frenzy of a high-stakes competition.

The inevitability of a crash is a reality every racer lives with, and seeks to internalise this during their training. In the immediate aftermath of the crash, racers are trained to keep their eyes open to help the brain make crucial decisions to avoid collision with other racers or objects on the track. Racers that meet with accidents can be seen sliding across the track with their heads held up, in a bid to minimise injuries to the head.

But racecraft is, of course, only half the story. Racing as a profession continues to confound many, and racers have been traditionally misunderstood. Why would anyone want to pour their blood, sweat and tears into something so risky? Where do racers get the fearlessness to do laps at mind boggling speed or hurtle down a hill unassisted? What about the impact of high speeds on the body day after day, or the monotony of it all? Most importantly, why do racers race? The video below explores the question.

Play


The video features racing champions from the stable of TVS Racing, the racing arm of TVS Motor Company, which recently completed 35 years of competitive racing in India. TVS Racing has competed in international rallies and races across some of the toughest terrains - Dakar, Desert Storm, India Baja, Merzouga Rally - and in innumerable national championships. Its design and engineering inputs over the years have also influenced TVS Motors’ fleet in India. You can read more about TVS Racing here.

This article has been produced by Scroll Brand Studio on behalf of TVS Racing and not by the Scroll editorial team.