At least four International Olympic Committee (IOC) members have written separately to Canada's Richard Pound complaining about his description of colleagues as "old farts" while others have also expressed their disapproval.
Pound, the IOC's longest-serving member having been elected in 1978, was quoted in a headline in the London Evening Standard this week as saying that "Only athletes can scare IOC old farts into beating cheats", before a subheading claimed that IOC President Thomas Bach is "sending a bad message by rolling over" in relation to Russian doping.
insidethegames exclusively revealed on Tuesday (February 20) that a letter was sent by influential Australian member John Coates in which he claimed Pound does not "enjoy the respect normally afforded to the holder" of the IOC doyen position.
Turkey's IOC vice-president Uğur Erdener, and two Executive Board members, Ukraine's Sergey Bubka and Guatemala's Willi Kaltschmitt Luján, have sent similar letters.
All except for the one sent by Erdener were copied to the entire IOC membership, and also seen by insidethegames.
Bubka also copied his letter to the IOC Ethics Commission.
"Your recent comments in the London Evening Standard seems to perpuate your long tradition of scathing comments about the IOC, the Olympic movement and your IOC colleagues," the Ukrainian wrote.
"These comments are not only insulting but are also factually incorrect.
"As the IOC dean one would expect better judgement and measurement in public statements.
"This was not the case and I hope that you will recognise this."
Kaltschmitt Luján also called for Pound to "recant his statements".
"I have read your crude comments you made in the London Evening Standard which I will not dignify by repeating, but I must say I feel sad and insulted," he wrote.
"As an EB member and longtime IOC member I have to censure your unethical comments, it is a breach to our principles, those you pledged to honor [sic] in your Oath when you became an IOC member.
"Those negative statements about our work in the fight against doping to protect clean athletes, especially the Russia situation, are cynical when you are well aware a due process was followed based on the reports by the two commissions.
"You may not be in agreement with these decisions but you have to respect them as they were openly discussed and democratically decided by the Session and the EB.
"I also want to point out your total lack of trust and collegiality in the IOC by encouraging the athletes to stand up against our institution when we have shown our responsibility and commitment to protect them consistently from those who break the Anti-Doping Code.
"I hope than as the Doyen of our Organization [sic] you recant your statements and resume your action with more respect to all of us."
Coates said today that Pound had apologised to him for his language if not his sentiment.
"I saw him this morning - he'd dropped me a note and I said 'thanks, got your note', and we had a little smile," Coates said.
"It [his note] was an apology for using the word 'fart' but putting it in context that it is a commonly used description that, perhaps at his age, he is one of those as well.
"So it was an apology of such, but again a defence of his position on Russia and a criticism of the IOC position that we've been taking, and that was it."
Pound later said that the "old farts" comment was a "cultural thing that didn't work", before adding "some people choose to be insulted".
"Some [IOC members] laughed about it and the ones that have written are generally members of the unanimous Executive Board," he said.
He answered "one would have to see how it develops" when asked if he would ever consider stepping-down from the IOC.
IOC spokesperson Mark Adams answered a question on Pound's comments yesterday by answering: "In the end, if you don't like the coffee that's served at the coffee shop, and you don't like the décor and you don’t like the prices, then you maybe go to another coffee shop".
"It's not the coffee that the problem," Pound responded today.
Other members echoed the stance of Coates and others.
"Dick Pound's comments have been a tremendous disappointment to most of my colleagues," Spain's IOC vice-president Juan Antonio Samaranch said today.
"Most of my colleagues that I have talked to show a profound sadness for the comments with regards to what it means to his colleague members of the IOC.
"When I disagree with someone, I do not necessarily have to go publicly against them personally.
"It's disappointing but he is entitled to his opinion and it is a very respected one.
"Sometime he is with the majority; mostly, recently, he is not in the majority.
"He is very experienced, has a lot of knowledge and he is a very intelligent person.
"The only thing is that, maybe, in my opinion, he went way too vocal on a number of occasions on things that imply disrespect on his colleagues."
Belgium's Pierre-Olivier Beckers added: "I think he [Pound] didn't make any more friends than he had before.
"I don't think his comments were appropriate.
"I personally think the best approach is simply to focus on what we have to do and to disregard those comments.
"Playing ping pong is not in the best interests of the Olympic Movement."