APRIL 8, 2015
Australian GP boss survives cancer
Australian grand prix supremo Ron Walker is cancer-free, the 75-year-old has confirmed.
A famously close ally of Bernie Ecclestone, the influential Australian businessman was instrumental in the race's switch from Adelaide some two decades ago.
His last race as chairman of the Australian grand prix corporation was the 2015 season opener in March.
Walker had made the decision to step down when he was fighting for his life for three years with cancer, but he has now told Fairfax Media that he is in remission.
"I'm the luckiest guy that ever walked," he said.
That is because local doctors had told him he would almost certainly die from the disease, prompting Walker to go to America to take an experimental drug that "wasn't cheap".
"I'm very lucky it (the cancer) is gone," he said. "It was in my brain, my bones, my lungs, my heart, everything.
"If I had stayed in Melbourne and just done nothing, I wouldn't be here today talking to you", Walker added.
The media report said Walker, with key political contacts including the prime minister Tony Abbott, has now successfully lobbied to have the drug made available in Australia.
"It's given hope to people who thought they were going to die," he said. "Now they're not going to die."