Julia Plesovskikh
Russian Federation

Julia Plesovskikh

Elena Anikina: "We hope, especially considering the position and strategy which IOC has now, that very soon the situation will be changed"

Elena Anikina: "We hope, especially considering the position and strategy which IOC has now, that very soon the situation will be changed"
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During the congress and exhibition event “We are together. Sport”, Vice-President of the Russian Bobsleigh Federation Elena Anikina told OSPORT about international contacts of the Federation and about a possible transition to Asia.

-Elena, firstly we would like to ask you about the current situation of international contacts in your sports federation. With what countries do you keep in touch with now?

-Unfortunately, right now bobsleigh and skeleton as other sports in Russia don’t have plenty of international communications. I have some on personal level, but on the business level we are not communicating because IBSF was recommended by IOC not to invite Russian athletes to any events and competitions but we hope, especially considering the position and strategy which IOC has now, that very soon the situation will be changed.

-Continuing our topic of international contacts, we would like to know about sponsorship. Does your federation have international sponsors?

-We never had international sponsors, we have only Russian ones, and the biggest amount of money was given to us by the government. But there is a problem with equipment. As far as I know, we didn’t buy anything this season because of a problem with money transferring. Besides, in our sport the best equipment is made in Germany. Luckily, we have enough equipment that we bought before sanctions. This season is a pause in any business contacts, but we hope that next year something will be changed.

-Nowadays there’re a lot of talks about Russia switching to Asian federations. Do you think this move is possible in bobsleigh and skeleton?

-Unfortunately, no, because our sport is popular mostly in Europe, Canada, and the USA. China and Korea (in Asia) have good bobsleigh tracks and are developing our sport. But they can not invite us to compete on their tracks in World Cups as it is against rules of international federation. Also, we have to consider availability of bobsleigh facilities. The majority of them are in Europe. Now it is a big problem for our athletes because all bobsleigh tracks are unique and different from each other. And the fact that we cannot compete on different tracks is really influencing the level of our athletes’ preparation. One year of suspension and isolation is okay, we compete domestically, but if it goes like this within next years, it will be a big problem.  

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