Russian Sports Minister Casts Doubt On Sochi Hosting 2017 Figure Skating Championships
Russia’s bid to host the 2017 World Figure Skating Championships in Sochi "was cast into doubt" Wednesday after Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko "signaled his disapproval," according to R-SPORT. Russian Figure Skating Federation President Alexander Gorshkov said Tuesday that "he had submitted a bid to host the competition at the 12,000-seat Iceberg Skating Palace, which held Olympic figure skating in February." However, Mutko "condemned the announcement as premature and accused the federation of breaking Russian law by submitting a bid for a major sports competition without ministry approval." Mutko: “Not knowing the law doesn’t free you from responsibility. We’ll look at the issue, there’s just no need to hurry. There’s a procedure. You have to contact the government, the Sports Ministry. We have to examine the possibilities, the financial resources.” Mutko suggested that the bid to host figure skating "could be hurt by the number of other major sports events to take place in Russia in the coming years," such as football's World Cup and F1 racing. Mutko: "We’re absolutely busy until 2021" (R-SPORT, 4/23).