February 01, 1998

The Road to Nagano

Russian sport has changed dramatically since Soviet times, when the authorities poured money into Olympic training programs and elite sports were ultra-politicized. Now, sports management has been decentralized into regional committees, supported mainly by local budgets, and major stars

are continuously being attracted abroad, weakening traditional Russian sports programs like ice hockey. Yet, despite these problems, Russia is still a force to be reckoned with in most winter sports. In the Winter Olympics in Lillehammer four years ago, Russia won 11 gold medals, the most of any national team. Alexei Dospekhov and Valeriya Mironova assess Russia’s chances of repeating this success in Nagano.


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