Krasnoyarsk Universiade participants come to Russia with positive attitude and believe in good result
23 February 2019. PenzaNews. The XXIX World Winter Universiade, which will be for the first time held in Russia, in the city of Krasnoyarsk from March 2 to March 12, will have a record number of participants, said Deputy Prime Minister, Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the Universiade-2019 Olga Golodets.
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“We’ve received the highest appreciation from international experts, and now we are getting ready for meeting teams. This winter Universiade will set a new record, because there have never been as many participants as 58 teams in Winter Universiade before. This indicates interest in winter sports, interest in sports among young people, confidence in the fact that the Universiade will be held at the highest level in Krasnoyarsk,” TASS cites Russian Deputy Prime Minister.
On Saturday, February 23, the grand opening of the Universiade village, located at the campus of the Siberian Federal University, took place in Krasnoyarsk. Its first guests were technical experts from participating teams of Russia and Japan. Representatives from the UK, USA and Canada will arrive shortly. In total, in the coming days, the village will take about 3 thousand athletes and coaches.
According to FISU President Oleg Matytsin, for the first time, the winners of the Krasnoyarsk Universiade will receive commemorative tokens by analogy with the Olympic ones.
“The Universiade symbolizes not only the sport of the highest achievements, but also demonstrates that the students of the whole world get together in a hospitable country. The token will not only be a good memorial sign, but will also remind about the athlete’s achievement. We followed the tradition of the Olympic movement and created this precedent. The tradition of awarding these signs will continue at other Universiades, but it will be started in Krasnoyarsk,” he said during the meeting with journalists on February 12.
Great attention is also paid to creating a festive atmosphere during the opening ceremony of the Universiade, which will be held at the Platinum Arena on Saturday, March 2.
“In total, more than a thousand artists will be involved in the opening and closing ceremonies of the Universiade, in addition to volunteers and staff. This is a very large number of people. There will be great costume shows. The scenery has been prepared for a month, we are engaged in the re-equipment of Platinum Arena. The culmination, of course, is the lighting of the fire, it will happen on the banks of the Yenisei River. We are considering options. More than 80 trucks have already gone to Krasnoyarsk with various equipment,” said at a press conference Ilya Averbukh, Olympic medalist, Ambassador of the Winter Universiade-2019, Director of the Opening and Closing ceremonies.
Commenting on the city’s readiness for the 2019 Universiade, Executive Directorate of the 29th Winter Universiade in Krasnoyarsk told PenzaNews that athletes and fans would be able to feel the atmosphere of Siberian hospitality from the very first steps in the city – in the new modern airport building where the guests will be met by volunteers ready to provide them any help.
“Considering the historical importance of the event, the organizing committee set the task to conduct the friendliest Student Games. [...] In total, 34 facilities of sports, transport and medical infrastructure were built, reconstructed or repaired for the international event in Krasnoyarsk. All facilities of the Winter Universiade-2019 have convenient location: they are set within the city limits, so athletes and fans can quickly get to the competition venue. In addition, all sports facilities in Krasnoyarsk are multifunctional. For example, two ice fields of the new Crystal Arena can be transformed into a basketball and volleyball field or to dance floor. And the ice Platinum Arena, where the Opening and Closing ceremonies of the 2019 Winter Universiade will take place, turns into a concert hall or exhibition venue in just a few hours. We should also mention the unique Sopka cluster, specially erected for the winter Universiade-2019. The tracks for all the freestyle and snowboard disciplines are created here, so the facility is planned to be used year-round to train the national and regional Russian teams,” the press service reported.
An interesting cultural program has been prepared for participants and fans of the competition. According to available information, it includes more than 270 events. The main cultural venue for Student Games will be the Universiade Park, designed to acquaint participants and guests of the competition with the culture of Siberian peoples. Tuvinian and Khakass yurts, the Russian log cabin and the Evenki tent will be erected in the open air, and the ethnic village – masterpiece of wooden architecture made of cedar – will be set there.
The Universiade Park will also be decorated with ice and snow sculptures created by artists from Russia, Canada, Belarus and Tuva who participated in the international festival-contest Magic Ice of Siberia. In addition, it is expected that live broadcasts of competitions and ceremonies will be organized in the park.
Meanwhile, foreign teams are finishing preparations for the competition and are looking forward to coming to Russia, in order not only to demonstrate their skills and abilities, but also to get to know the country and its people closer.
Thus, Angelo Orsillo, International relations specialist from Italian University Sport Centre (CUSI), said that their team is “excited to know the Siberian land.” According to him, there is no doubt that the organization level and quality will be very good like it was in Kazan 2013.
“For now all the correspondence with the organizing committee was perfect. The people are very kind and professional,” Angelo Orsillo said.
“We think we are doing good results, we have a good team in Figure Skating, Cross-country skiing and Alpine skiing,” he said, assessing the Italian students' chances to win.
In turn, Robert Milton Calo, Executive Vice President, FESSAP, Chairman of the Universiade Preparation and Monitoring Committee, stressed that representatives of the island state, where it is summer all year round, will take part in the Winter Games for the first time.
“The mood is very exciting. We got one lady athlete to join the Figure Skating. Moreover, we have already started the preparations for for the 2021 Winter Universiade to get more participants,” he said.
Robert Milton Calo added that “the Organizing Committee in Krasnoyarsk will be on top of the situation,” and “the level of preparation will be excellent.”
“Definitely, the standards should be met with great success. Actually, last year we sent one official and one athlete to take part in FISU Forum in Krasnoyarsk. They visited the venue of the Winter Universiade and the report of that preparation for Winter Universiade by the Russia was amazing,” Executive Vice President of FESSAP said.
According to him, the very fact of participation in the Universiade is important for the Philippines team.
“First, our participants’ expectation is to join the high level of competition, even we know from the start that our performance will not be as strong as of those candidates coming from the ‘winter’ continents. The main result will be our first attainment that will base our understanding where we can start to show more interest in the future participation,” Robert Milton Calo explained.
Meanwhile, Kosuke Okoshi, Japanese Olympic Committee (JOC), Japanese University Sports Board (JUSB), admitted that the excitement among Japanese athletes in connection with the upcoming Universiade is growing every day.
“Each athlete seems to be looking forward to visit Krasnoyarsk. Also, as a Head of Delegation, I can say that we do appreciate that Organizing Committee do their best to make this Universiade be succeeded in. Thus, we, Japanese delegation, are very proud and reliable to the Organizing Committee,” Kosuke Okoshi said.
“As for the result of each competition, we, Japan, do not set the number of the concrete goal of medals, however. I, as a HOD, expect that each athlete breaks through their potential through this Universiade and grow up to become a national icon or representative athlete in Japan,” he added.
In his opinion, competitions in Krasnoyarsk will promote friendly relations between students from different countries.
“The strong and great point of Universiade is that the multi-sport and international athletes can stay at the same University Village. Thus, I expect that Japanese athletes try to communicate not only with other sports athletes of Japan, but international athletes. Then, I would like the athletes to make great friendship internationally,” the Japanese HOD said.
Delise O'Meally, Secretary General, United States International University Sport Federation (USIUSF), expressed the view that Krasnoyarsk Universiade will be excellent.
“We are very excited to travel to Krasnoyarsk next week, to represent the United States. For many of our students, this will be their first time to visit Russia. We know from our previous visits to the FISU Forum as well as the Head of Delegation meeting, that the organization level in Krasnoyarsk is extremely high and the facilities are excellent. I had the opportunity to lead the US delegation for the Summer Universiade in Kazan and the experience was extraordinary. We expect that Krasnoyarsk will also be excellent,” Delise O'Meally said.
According to her, American team will include student-athletes from many universities around the United States.
“We are training and preparing to give our best effort to compete at a very high level and hopefully win medals. Also very important for us, is the exposure our student-athletes will gain by participating in this great event, and meeting so many people who believe in the value of sport and education. We look forward to competing and developing life-long friendships with student-athletes from around the world,” USIUSF Secretary General concluded.
The Summer and Winter Universiades are held every two years under the auspices of the International University Sports Federation (FISU).
Students from the age of 17 to 25 years and graduates who have received an academic degree or a diploma in the year preceding the competition are allowed to participate in competitions.
The World Winter Universiade 2019 will take place in Krasnoyarsk from 2 to 12 March, 2019. Athletes will compete 76 sets of awards in 11 sports: alpine skiing, bandy, biathlon, cross-country skiing, curling, figure skating, freestyle skiing, ice hockey, short track, ski orienteering, snowboarding.
The Summer Universiade was held twice in the USSR and the Russian Federation: Moscow hosted the competition in 1973, and Kazan – in 2013. Winter tournament will be held in Russia for the first time. In the struggle to host the Universiade, Krasnoyarsk defeated the Swiss canton of Valais.