FIA, FIFA, FINA, FIS - there hardly exists an alphabetic letter (or two) not appended to the abbreviation for Federation International to denote an international sporting body of some genre or other.
True, the International Olympic Committee does without 'F', but then the IOC caters for various physical sports on a quadrennial basis, rather than being an individual sporting discipline.
However, what sets the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile - and its two-wheel FIM counterpart - apart from the balance of acronymic organisations is that the FIA (est. 1904) is not purely a sporting authority, but represents the full spectrum of four-wheel activities across the globe.
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South African-born Dieter trained as industrial engineer before holding down a variety of senior motor industry marketing and manufacturing positions. At the age of 40 he decided to follow his passion, and became the first and only South African journalist to cover Formula 1 regularly. Dieter joined AtlasF1 at the beginning of 2004 – a year prior to its merger with Autosport – and his regular column offers an intriguing analysis of F1’s politicking and commercial chicanery. Although now also proudly Belgian, he gives his domicile as "Wherever F1 duplicity lurks".@RacingLines More features by Dieter Rencken