Vladimir Putin presents state awards to champions of Olympics 2016
Penza, 25 August 2016. PenzaNews. Russian President Vladimir Putin presented state awards to the winners of the Olympic Games 2016 held in Rio de Janeiro.
The ceremony was held in the Kremlin on Thursday, August 25.
“First of all I congratulate the Russian team with a decent performance at the XXXI Olympic Games. And I want to thank you for having gone through severe heartrending experience with flying colors. You have shown great skill, endurance and stamina, and confirmed the strong position of Russia in world sports,” the president said, addressing the audience.
He expressed special gratitude to the Russian team mentors, coaches, doctors and other professionals.
“We know how difficult it was to our athletes in Rio. On the eve of the games the team was cut by almost a third: it was deprived of the opportunity to show themselves in sports, where Russia has traditionally been a recognized favorite. But our team — you, dear friends — coped with all the difficulties, you were a team, proved that the victory depends not only on the number, though in this case the number was important, but, at least, and perhaps more importantly, the abilities . You acted like real fighters, you did not break, but fought and won,” Vladimir Putin added.
The first to receive the state award from the hands of the president of Russia — the Order of Honor — was Anastasia Bliznyuk, representing the Penza region in a parallel offset. On August 21 she won gold as a part of the national team in rhythmic gymnastics in group exercises.
Also the Order of Honor was awarded to Aliya Mustafina, who won gold on the bars, bronze in the individual all-round and silver as part of the Russian women's team in gymnastics. Since the end of 2014 she trained in Penza under the guidance of local coach Sergei Starkin.
Another student of the coach was awarded the state order in the Kremlin — Penza athlete Denis Ablyazin, who won silver as a part of the Russian national team and took the third place on the rings, and the second in the vault. He was awarded the Order of Friendship.
Bronze and silver medalist received awards earlier, which were handed by Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko and presidential aide Igor Levitin.
As a result of the Olympic Games in Brazil, the Russian team finished fourth in the team event, winning 56 medals — 19 gold, 18 silver and 19 bronze.