Dear Vladimir Vladimirovich!
Dear members of the Council and esteemed colleagues!
The recent Olympic Games in Tokyo that had been postponed for a year have come to an end. The Games, undoubtedly, were the most difficult and challenging in our time both for participants and organizers.
Speaking about the results of the Russian team’s performance in Tokyo, I will single out several main indicators.
The most successful teams were the wrestling, fencing, synchronized swimming, shooting, and taekwondo teams. Representatives of the swimming, artistic gymnastics, boxing, and tennis teams made a significant contribution to the overall success of our team.
Russian Olympians won medals in 19 sports. 128 athletes returned from Tokyo with awards, that is, every third participant of the Games.
I would like to mention Svetlana Romashina, who became the most decorated athlete in the history of synchronized swimming, being the only seven-time Olympic champion in this sport. The words that she spoke on behalf of the team before leaving for Tokyo at a meeting with you, Vladimir Vladimirovich, proved to be in line with the performance.
The serious attention of the country’s leadership to our athletes played an important role. The parting words of the President and the congratulatory telegrams elicited sincere emotional reactions from our athletes and played a crucial role in their success. I should also mention the reception of the “Golden Flight” on August 9 with a celebration held on Red Square – in the heart of Russia – on Vasilyevsky Spusk. These are unforgettable moments in the history of our country and national sport.
I cannot thank enough all colleagues involved in the preparation and responsible for the participation of the Russian team at the Olympic Games, and also all the sports federations that approached our recommendations for information support for the Games, complied with anti-COVID safety protocols, and conformed with measures to prevent anti-doping violations with the utmost responsibility. Special attention was paid to these areas, and we are glad that our concerted efforts made it possible to solve the tasks set before us.
As a result, at the Tokyo Games, Russian athletes living in the Olympic Village did not have a single positive test for coronavirus. At the same time, medical support for the ROC Team was traditionally provided by our colleagues from the Federal Medical and Biological Agency at the highest professional level.
During the Tokyo Games, there were also no anti-doping violations by Russian athletes. All this together testifies to the fact that, thanks to the consistent implementation of state policy in the field of sport with the active participation of specialized public associations, a new generation of winners is emerging in our country.
Despite the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics, the Russian Olympic Committee entirely fulfilled all the auxiliary obligations within the framework of the Program to assist Candidates to become Members of the Olympic team and to ensure participation in the Olympic Games.
We routinely help sports federations by fulfilling their applications for targeted funding of specific components of training, including payment for the services of foreign coaches and specialists.
Next, I would like to emphasize the effectiveness of the Adaptation project. As part of this project, the ROC presented a report on the specifics of the chronobiological and climate-geographic adaptation of athletes to the conditions of the region where the Games are held. The coaching staffs of the national teams received detailed scientific advice. Based on this data, locations were determined for holding the final training camps in the same time zone and under similar climatic conditions in the Russian Far East.
I would like to express separate gratitude for the comprehensive assistance and support shown by the leaders of the Far East regions, who were able to promptly respond to requests from the federations, the Ministry of Sport and the ROC. The city of Vladivostok became the main transport hub, which allowed us, with the assistance of our official flag carrier Aeroflot, to provide logistics and transportation amidst the global pandemic.
The geographical position of Russia, as you rightly noted, has definitely become one of our competitive advantages. Many foreign colleagues quietly envied this.
But today I would like to talk not only about the main indicators and statistics. There is one more aspect which, in my opinion, is no less important. I’m talking about the moral and emotional effect of the success of Russian athletes.
In the age of the pandemic, along with obvious hidden negative factors, when athletes were psychologically pressured, stigmatized and defamed by the “progressive” media, forcing them to be deprived of the national flag and the national anthem, each medal received was won with great difficulty and therefore has a special human value.
The performances of Russian Olympians were accompanied with the unity of fans and the desire of the most diverse people along with the whole country to rejoice in the success of our athletes, who fought to the end, almost always beyond the limits of ordinary human capabilities. It was victory over yourself, over your opponents, and over your circumstances, regardless of injuries and judging errors.
Everyone who followed their performances saw and felt it perfectly well. From here we have such support and nationwide recognition. For the younger generation, the heroes of the Games are living examples and role models. Young people look up to them and go in for sports, strengthening their mind and body, and therefore strengthening the Nation.
We witnessed how our Team was received in Moscow after the Games. It was a national holiday, the significance of which is especially great now, when people understand the importance of unity, mutual understanding and respect, without which humanity cannot cope with the global challenges that loom ahead.
It is symbolic that in Tokyo we managed to disrupt the long periods of no Olympic wins in various sports and disciplines. The first gold medals in a quarter of a century in swimming and artistic gymnastics (men’s and women’s team all-around), the first medals in rowing in 17 years, and the first individual medal in archery in 29 years are some of the most striking examples.
These victories were the result of the comprehensive joint work of athletes, coaches, sports federations, the Ministry of Sport, the FMBA, the Olympians Support Fund, the Russian Olympic Committee, and other departments. And this work will not stop with the end of the Olympics!
It should be noted that the modern realities for preparing Russian athletes for the Olympic Games have gone far beyond the purely sports component. A most important role in our work can be described as the systematic protection of the interests of our athletes, ensuring equal rights in the struggle for Olympic licenses, and the opportunity to participate in the Olympic Games.
Despite all attempts to subject us to collective sanctions, the verified legal position and expert support allowed in court to defend the right of Russians to participate in the Olympic Games on an equal basis with their rivals without additional conditions, achieve a significant reduction, and even complete elimination, of several inadequate restrictions placed on athletes.
Despite the modified designation “ROC Team” – no one in Tokyo or in the world had any doubts about what country the team represented in uniforms using the colors of our national flag, prepared by our official outfitter ZASPORT.
The elements of the tricolor on the ROC flag and the musical accompaniment by composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky were not an official substitute for the symbols of Russian statehood. But they gave a clear signal of who we are and where we are from.
This became possible largely due to constructive interaction with the International Olympic Committee. However, the opponents of Russia were categorically against this.
Yes, there were provocations and attempts to exert psychological pressure in Tokyo. But in difficult conditions, athletes and officials showed resilience and acted in a worthy manner. As a result, it was possible not only to avoid destabilizing situations, but also to suppress such undignified attempts.
In conclusion, on behalf of athletes and coaches, federations, and the Russian Olympic Committee, I would like to express my deepest gratitude to you for the fact that the Russian Olympic Committee had the necessary resources to solve all the tasks set before us. Bearing in mind the various challenges that we have been facing in recent years.
Thanks to stable funding from the general sponsor of the Russian Olympic Team, PJSC Gazprom, we successfully prepared for and performed at the Tokyo Olympics.
Next year, the term of the four-year agreement expires, and I appeal to you, Vladimir Vladimirovich, with a huge request from all of us to assist in concluding a new agreement that would help us implement the preparation program for the 2024 Summer Olympics.
While maintaining comprehensive state and your personal support, honorable Vladimir Vladimirovich, we can reasonably count on further progress in national sports, which translates into strengthening the health of our fellow citizens, increasing patriotism and social cohesion, at the same time boosting the human potential of our Great Country.
Thank you very much for your attention!