«The Young and Daring Want to Win»
¹ 1 (2008)
Today most famous Russian people declare that they had no doubt about the choice of Sochi as the capital of the winter Olympics of 2014. And you, Leonid Vasilyevich?
I was sure that Sochi would win, although the struggle for the location of the XXII winter Olympics was really tense as we had hot, worthy opponents. There had been an idea of placing the winter Olympic Games in Sochi earlier, in the middle of the
International Olympic Committee inspectors have already visited Moscow for several times. They were lavish with praises about the Russian authorities. Shall we manage to keep up?
The organization of any Olympic games always presupposes a huge amount of work, overcoming a lot of various circumstances. The organizers of the Olympics in Turin and Athens faced severe diffi culties. They had to reject projects in case they failed to do something in time. But its not a problem because life always makes corrections. Once, in 1976, the Olympic Games had to be relocated to another continent, from Denver, USA, to Innsbruck, Austria. The project
Is it possible that, thanks to the authorities moral and financial support, our sportsmen will have time to makeup for the time lost in the 90-s and act brilliantly during the Sochi Olympics?
Sport bases are already being constructed in various regions. The shortage of sport complexes is being reduced. Training staff, however, is still in great demand. But we are now reviving this profession. We have all chances of winning the first prize in the unofficial team placing in the Sochi Olympics of 2014.
Russian sportsmen will first try their Olympic strength during the summer Games of 2008, which are to start in Peking in several weeks. Are you satisfied with the quality of our team?
Yes, I am. Right after the Olympic Games of 2004 the Russian Olympic Committee created the staff responsible for the organization of the Sochi Games of 2008. A good work has been done since then. We have taken into account everything: the creation of all conditions for the team training, adaptation, transportation, equipment, living, etc.
Has the team staff been changed anyhow as compared with the previous Olympics?
The team will include the recognized leaders of the world sports. There are a lot of famous athletes such as Elena Isinbayeva, Tatyana Lebedeva, Olga Kuzenkova, Yury Borzakovsky. All of them are the winners of the Olympics in Athens. I can also mention Olga Slusarenko, Mikhail Ignatyev, Denis Menshov, the winner of grand tours, in cycle racing; such silver medal winners as Ekaterina Gamova, Lubov Socolova in volleyball, Maria Sharapova among tennis players, Anastasiya Davydova and Anastasiya Yermakova in synchronised swimming, Stanislav Posdnyakov and Tatyana Logunova in fencing. New sportsmen also appear. And they are proud that they are to participate in the Olympics as the members of the Russian team just the way we were proud to perform being the members of the USSR team.
What is your forecast concerning the results of our teams performance in Peking?
We are going to China to struggle for the first team prize. I believe in my team.