At the start of the leg participants and spectators were greeted by Svetlana Makovskaya, Minister of Education of the Krasnoyarsk Territory, who became the first flame bearer, and Andrey Beresnev, Mayor of Kansk.
“Universiade Flame is a long-standing and good tradition,” says Svetlana Makovskaya, Minister of Education of the Krasnoyarsk Territory. “The Flame is a symbol of unity, and the Universiade is a big sport celebration, that we all anticipate. I am glad that, despite Siberian freezing weather, citizens came to support the participants. I was born and raised in Kansk, worked as principal at local school No. 11. This is my motherland, my hometown. That is why it was very important for me to participate in this leg of the Winter Universiade 2019 Flame.”
Andrey Beresnev, Mayor of Kansk, reminded that the route of the Flame regional leg includes 13 cities of the Krasnoyarsk Territory: “I am pleased that Kansk became a part of this list. Our city is very athletic, back in the day world wide famous biathletes Evgeny Ustyugov, Pavel Rostovtsev, Olga Medvedtseva, Svetlana Chernousova trained here. The Universiade Flame is a milestone event, a new page in the city history for Kansk citizens.”
The Flame was carried through the streets of Kansk by 14 flame bearers, including Nikolay Bolshakov, bronze medalist of Cross-Country Skiing World Championship and Olympic Games participant, Anna Grigoryeva, two-time winner of European Youth Olympic Festival in Biathlon, Dmitry Arsky, Coca-Cola HBC Russia sales manager, Evgenia Surnacheva, director of the Kansk centralized library system, and Alla Stalmakova, Arte dance troupe director.
“It is a great honour for me to be the Winter Universiade 2019 Flame bearer,” says Nikolay Bolshakov. “Five years ago I carried Sochi 2014 Olympic Flame and experienced extraordinary emotions then. When I heard that there would be the Universiade Flame, I immediately applied, because I wanted to get this energy boost again and to feel like a part of exceptional sport celebration. Such events as the Flame relay are very important for popularization of sport among teenagers and children.”
Viktor Kondrashov, Vice-Chair of the Education and Sport Committee of the Krasnoyarsk Territory Legislative Assembly, who is also one of the flame bearers, told that he had specially prepared before the start: “Today in the morning I had a training session, jogging along the Kan river embankment. During the Flame event I felt great, it is a pity that my stage finished so quickly. It was nice to share joy with Kansk citizens and connect with the history of a big sport event.”
At the finish near the City House of Culture the Winter Universiade 2019 Flame was met by Alexandr Zarutsky, Head of Kansk District, Olga Olhimenko, Head of Ilansk District, and Andrey Beresnev, Mayor of Kansk. City cauldron was ignited by Andrey Lenev, markmanship coach of the Stolnikov Youth Athletic School. “I am grateful that I was chosen to be the finishing flame bearer. I will remember this day for a long time! I will definitely go to Krasnoyarsk to see the Winter Universiade 2019 and support our athletes.”
After the city cauldron lighting ceremony, there was a festive concert in the City House of Culture within the framework of the Yenisei Express social and cultural project. Now the Winter Universiade 2019 Flame will be taken to Zelenogorsk where the next leg will take place on 11 February.
Let us remind that the Universiade Flame started on 20 September in the Italian city of Turin where the solemn lighting ceremony of the Winter Universiade 2019 flame took place. Such cities as Almaty (Kazakhstan) and Harbin (China) welcomed the flame bearers as a part of the Universiade Flame Relay international leg. In Russia, the Universiade Flame has already been brought to 21 cities. The Relay will end in Krasnoyarsk on 1 March 2019.
The Winter Universiade 2019 Flame Relay is supported by Nornickel Mining and Metallurgical Company and Siberian Wellness International Corporation. Throughout the whole route, the Winter Universiade 2019 Flame is guarded by the Federal National Guard Troops Service.