RIO2016: 500 DAYS TO GO

As ex Olympic Minister Tessa Jowell wrote in her excellent blog yesterday in the Guardian, we are all excited, nervous, tense and, most of all, committed. The atmosphere at the Committee in Rio is of sheer enthusiasm, an electric buzz so particular to Brazilians. And I say that based on what I feel thousands of miles away, in London.

Mascot Vinicius at Sugar Loaf Mountain

Mascot Vinicius at Sugar Loaf Mountain

Of course we know that all the athletes are excited with the prospect of the 1st Olympic Games in South America. But I was actually very nicely surprised with the amazing video produced by New Zealand gang


Today Ayrton would have turned 55. Millions of fans have taken to twitter to celebrate his life, register their grief, pay their respects. I obviously share all of these. And more. Writing about him, it is writing about (part of) my own life as well: my feelings, my experiences, my professional life. I spent the entire week debating with myself whether to register anything on this day. I do not like to bring attention to myself; I really dislike people who try and be more important than the person they are actually working for/with (if you know what I mean). But only yesterday, after a talk with a Japanese producer for NHK, did I realise that what I am honestly not comfortable with is re living it all and, in the process, exposing myself and Ayrton.

The best friendship in F1. This was taken at Gerhard's birthday in 1993

The best friendship in F1. This was taken at Gerhard’s birthday in 1993

When I finally managed to watch the documentary – months after it had been out in the cinemas -, on video at home accompanied by a bottle of wine, I was actually watching my own little life film shown back to me. Well, an important, powerful and intense section of it, anyway. As the film went on, I was going through all my memories of every event; how Ayrton really felt going through them, the bits he shared with me, the laughs, rages and stresses all those occasions caused him and all of those around. I went through dozens of his facial expressions, his mannerisms, his deeply charismatic way. And I missed him like hell. Most of all, I feel achingly sorry for his lost life. For the first time in 20 years, it hurt again. And as I write that, it hurts again.

The only time I held that umbrella. A bit embarrassing, actually.

The only time I held that umbrella. A bit embarrassing, actually.

I took that at a testing in Silverstone 1991, I think

I took that at a testing in Silverstone 1991, I think

It is all so powerful, I feel I need to to share a bit. So here it is some personal photos. “Ayrton, F1 is SOOOOOOO boring without you. No personalities, no opinions, not one intense character. The whole world of motor racing miss you much more than they think. Personally, I repeat, I only feel a huge, deep loss for you at such a prime time in your personal trajectory”

Adriane Galisteu and I in a farewell dinner given by the McLaren mechanics for Ayrton , Australia 1993

Adriane Galisteu and I in a farewell dinner given by the McLaren mechanics for Ayrton , Australia 1993

Atleta Paralympica é sucesso na passarela

A velejadora Marinalva Almeida foi um sucesso no desfile do estilista Fernando Cozendey semana passada o que lhe rendeu ate’ convite para desfilar na Itália. Ela também e’ recordista brasileira de salto em distância e no dardo. E fazia corrida de rua de muletas. Ela perdeu a perna esquerda aos 15 anos depois de um acidente de moto em Campo Grande (MS)

Marinalva Almeida, 37 anos

Marinalva Almeida, 37 anos

“Eu aprendi a nadar depois do acidente. Fiz natação, tênis de mesa, arremesso de dardo, disco, peso e até halterofilismo. Queria me descobrir, saber o que eu podia e o que não podia”, conta.

Leia a matéria toda no


Of course I don’t claim to have seen everything that is out there of Ayrton. But adding what I did experience with him and all the material I have been shown and researched in the last 25 years, it comes to an awful lot of stuff. I sort of thought I had seen it all.

Here is a video of Ayrton in January 1994, enjoying a relaxing day of fishing with a friend of his father Milton. The audio is in Portuguese but you can have a really good idea of how relaxed and down to earth he could be and totally away from cameras. One of my readers, Petrus, posted on my blog and I thought I needed to share with Ayrton’s fans.

F1. Watch Jules Bianch’s video of the accident.

And here is the video that FOM told everybody did not exist – As once they said about Senna’s incur images. This was in youtube and taken out.

Accidents do happen. But I am worried about what some drivers have told the press: they were not asked about the decision to race or not if weather got worse! In other words: the decision whether drivers should risk their lives is still on the hands of the organisers.

And let’s not forget Nikki Lauda comment after retiring from a ‘rainy’ Japanese GP in 1976 and giving the title to James Hunt: “I am paid to race not to jump out of the window”


Many people have asked me to write more about Ayrton. I did promise I would do so. However, I had underestimated the impact of all the commemorations of 20 years of his death would have on me. I simply needed to stop digging it all up.

In the eve of Suzuka Grand Prix and the announcement of Honda’s coming back to Formula 1 I decided to revisit my notes and here are some of Ayrton’s thought on both: The Japanese Grand Prix and its engine manufacturer.

The collisions with Prost are too well documented. So I have chosen his pole position lap. Ride with him

“After all these years we have been racing in Japan the enthusiasm of the fans still moves me. it is amazing. The numbers of fans I have here is absurd and it grows every year. I am recognised everywhere in Japan and always, no exception, treated with respect and admiration. For all that, it is always an immense pleasure for me to come to Japan.

“The mutual trust is the foremost aspect of my 6-year relationship with Honda. All the rest – and I mean our outstanding results – is well documented in the history books and I believe that it speaks for itself. It has invariably been a truthful relationship in which both parts have always worked in the best interest of everybody, in order to be successful and to seek the improvement all the time. But most significant of it all is that there has always been a healthy atmosphere, consistently respecting human values and ethics

To finish, his Press Conference.

INVICTUS GAMES TERMINAM EM LONDRES. Jogos para feridos em conflitos

Terminou ontem em Londres o 1o Invictus Games,os Jogos entre atletas feridos em combates, uma ideia adotada pelo príncipe Harry, patrono do evento. A festa de encerramento no Parque Olimpico contou com a participação de Foo Fighters, Kaiser Chiefs e Ellie Goulding. Foram quatro dias de competições que, apesar de não terem atraído o mesmo interesse que os Jogos Paralimpicos, conseguiram aumentar a conscientização da população e o moral dos ex combatentes.

Uma materia que gostei muito foi publicada pelo Sunday †imes antes do inicio dos Jogos. Escrita por Mark Hookhan, e intitulada “Heróis a caminho do Parque Olimpico”. Ninguém descarta a presença de alguns destes atletas no Rio em 2016. Vale a pena ler o artigo que conta com video de celebridades apoiando o evento

Prefeito de Londres Boris Johnson e Principe Harry

Prefeito de Londres Boris Johnson e Principe Harry

Veja a seqüência de fotos do Telegraph :

Racism: Ronaldinho is called “Monkey” by local politician in Mexico

Less than a week after signing to play for Queretáro, in México, the ex World Footballer of the Year Ronaldinho Gaucho, was called a monkey by a local politician, Carlos Treviño, on his webpage.

Ronaldinho on his presentation

Ronaldinho on his presentation

“I am tolerant, but I HATE FOOTBALL. And the idiotic phenomenum it produces. I hate even more as people fill up the streets and delayed everybody else trying to get home. And all that for a monkey. Brazilian, but monkey. It is a ridicule circus”, wrote Treviño

Good thing he is tolerant, isn’t it. Treviño is the Social Development Secretary of Queretáro and was commenting on the traffic caused by Ronaldinho’s presentation to the club last Friday. The club has issued a statement saying they will not tolerate racism.

Tollerate seems to be a very loosely used word in Queretáro

Match Fixing: Mercado de jogo asiático arrecada num dia o que a FIFA ganhou com a Copa do Mundo

O maior expert de match fixing da Inglaterra deu uma entrevista exclusiva ao reporter Paul Kelso, da SKY Sports, alertando para os perigos do mercado de jogo e destacando que o futebol inglês é bastante vulnerável.

“As pessoas comentam dos bilhões que a FIFA ganhou com a ultima Copa. £4 bilhões?!? O mercado de jogo asiático arrecada o mesmo numa quinta feira”, alertou. “Num dia só! A quantidade de dinheiro no crime organizado é fenomenal!”.

A Football Association tem nomes de jogadores possivelmente envolvidos. Outros ja’ foram suspensos.

A matéria e’ extremamente interessante. Assista e leia o artigo no

Football x Racism: Gremio expelled from Copa Brasil. Supporter in policy custody

Gremio supporter Patricia Moreira was caught on camera chanting racist songs and calling Santos’ goalkeeper Aranha, monkey and niger. They were shocking images , transmitted live to the whole country last Thursday at the Arena in Porto Alegre in the match between Gremio x Santos. She was definitely not alone but she was the only one arrested and, yesterday, arrived at the police station crying and visibly shaken. A witness was also called to the station to make an statement.

The video shows clearly Patricia pronouncing every syllable of MA-CA-CO. The president of FIFA, Sepp Blatter, has expressed his support for Brazilian decision to expel Gremio from the Copa Brasil. One can only hope Blatter puts pressure in some European Team , specially in Italy and Spain where racism incidents have been quite frequent, to do the same.

If you want to know more read the article at


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