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02 March 2020 | in Freestyle Skiing

Krasnoyarsk welcomes FIS Freestyle World Cup to town exactly one year since hosting Winter Universiade 2019

KRASNOYARSK, RUSSIAN FEDERATION – It’s certainly fitting that one year to the day that the city at the heart of Siberia welcomed the world to its impressive snow and ice venues during the Krasnoyarsk 2019 Winter Universiade opening ceremonies that the world’s best mogul skiers would come to town for the latest stage of the FIS Freestyle World Cup. 

 

KRKS mascot U Laika welcoming competitors to Krasnoyarsk at airport

 

While the 29th Winter Universiade opened in the Platinum Ice Area one year ago, a chartered flight – aboard a Boeing 737 emblazoned with the loveable U-Laika Winter Universiade event mascot – brought the world’s best men’s and women’s freestyle skiers from Almaty to Krasnoyarsk.  

 

Winter Universiade 2019 Moguls 1A finalist from the Krasnoyarsk 2019 Winter Universiade men’s moguls competition gets inverted during his mandatory aerial manoeuvre

 

More than 140 athletes, support staff arrived today from the host cities of the two previous Winter Universiade hosts, as the Kazakhstan winter sports hub hosted the 2017 event edition.  Competitors will have several days to train on the highly-acclaimed Sopka Cluster. The venue looms resplendently above the Krasnoyarsk city centre, especially when lit up with high-wattage floodlights at night for evening ski sessions, with the FIS World Cup competitions taking place this Saturday and Sunday, the 7-8 March. 

 

Winter Universiade 2019 Dual Mogul CompFreestyle Moguls competitors getting airborne during the Winer Universiade 2019 competition finals

 

Showcasing the warm spirit of the local residents that resonated long past last year’s 11-day university student sports event, the Krasnoyarsk wind band welcomed the skiers in the airport. 

 

Winter Universiade 2019 Dual Mogul 2Mogul skiing competitions consist of one timed run of free skiing on a steep, heavily moguled course, stressing technical turns, aerial maneuvers and speed

 

For reigning Olympic and world champion Michael Kingsbury of Canada, the inaugural FIS World Cup stop in Krasnoyarsk marks his first Siberian experience but is one he has looked forward to since watching last year’s Winter Universiade competitions. 

 

 Olympic champ Michael Kingsbury from CanadaOlympic champ Michael Kingsbury from Canada

 

“I have great expectations of your city: I watched a video on YouTube, watched the Winter Universiade 2019 taking place in Krasnoyarsk, and I am in great anticipation,” said Kingsbury. “Thank you for the very warm welcome, we are not always welcomed like this! I am very pleased to return to Russia. I think it will be a great week. 

Joining Kingsbury as names to watch for the weekend is Ikuma Horishima, the 2017 world champion in dual moguls.  While Kingsbury has looked nearly unstoppable on the World Cup circuit of late, Japan’s Horishima athlete has a special connection to Krasnoyarsk as it is where he won gold during Winter Universiade 2019. 

 “After winning the Winter Universiade, everyone was happy for me – my parents and friends. Now I also came back to Krasnoyarsk for the first place!”

 

Ikuma Khorishima from Japan Arrives in KrasnoyarskDefending Winter Universiade 2019 champion Ikuma Horishima from Japan will compete again in Krasnoyarsk

 

Top technical delegates like FIS Freestyle World Cup coordinator Joe Fitzgerald also arrived in Krasnoyarsk today via the U-Laika express.

 "I was in Krasnoyarsk twice during the inspection and revisions. Last year, the city hosted the World Winter Universiade quite successfully,” Fitzgerald said. “And now all these modern sports facilities are available for international competitions. We are pleased to hold the competitions at the Sopka Cluster and enjoy your warm welcome.”

According to top city officials, the FIS Freestyle World Cup Stages in Krasnoyarsk  was only possible by pairing the city’s modern sports infrastructure with their demonstrated passion and professionalism for hosting sports events, both of which are a legacy from Winter Universiade 2019.

“Exactly a year ago, one of the most significant events in the Krasnoyarsk history – the 29th Winter Universiade 2019 kicked off,” said Maxim Urazov, former Winter Universiade 2019 Director-General and now Russian Students Sport Union President.

“During the preparation for the Student Games, our city has changed. We now have modern sports facilities, thanks to which Krasnoyarsk is capable of hosting major events. The facilities of the Winter Universiade 2019 have already hosted the Russian Figure Skating Championship, the World Junior Curling Championships, and other competitions, and in a few days, the stages of the FIS Freestyle World Cup will begin. I am glad that Krasnoyarsk  continues to develop and becomes a centre of spectacular sports events." 

To follow along with the event happening in Krasnoyarsk, visit the FIS Freestyle Ski World Cup Stages’ official website at freestyle.prosibir.com

 

U Laika airplane bringing more athletes to the heart of SiberiaU-Laika airplane bringing more athletes to the heart of Siberia