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  • Russian Bobsleigh Federation Chooses President


    (ATR) The Russian Bobsleigh Federation elects Elena Anikina as its new president.

    Elena Anikina (left) and Alexander Zubkov (center) from July 2018 meeting of RBF Presidium (Facebook)
    Anikina defeated Andrei Pimashkov 25-8 in voting by the RBF Presidium, according to TASS.

    Pimashkov, a businessman from Krasnoyarsk, and Anikina were the only candidates after Oleg Sokolov, the former head of the Russian bobsleigh team, pulled out of the race shortly before the election.

    Anikina has been serving as the interim president since Jan. 22, after RBF President Alexander Zubkov stepped down to serve a doping ban until December 18, 2020. She told Around the Rings in late January that new elections were needed to bring all accreditations and registrations for the federation into compliance with the Russian legal system.

    The International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation (IBSF) banned Zubkov on Jan. 16 for being part of the Russian scheme in Sochi that swapped steroid-tainted urine samples with clean ones. The sanction prevents Zubkov from taking part in the sport during that time, forcing him to give up his post as head of the RBF. He was re-elected to a four-year term in 2018.

    A four-time Olympian, Zubkov carried the Russian flag at the opening ceremony for the 2014 Winter Games and at age 39, became one of the oldest bobsleigh drivers to win gold medals at an Olympics. The IOC in 2017 stripped him of the gold medals he won in the two- and four-man bobsleigh in Sochi, citing doping offenses. His lifetime ban by the IOC was overturned on appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport.

    Anikina has been elected for a full four-year term. Should Zubkov decide to return to his position as RBF president following the completion of his ban, the RBF would have to decide to call new elections.

    Written by Gerard Farek

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