2011 Worlds Moved to Moscow

24 March 2011: The following statement was released by the ISU concerning the location of Worlds:

ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2011

24 Mar 2011 11:48

In its statement of March 21, 2011 the ISU communicated the decision of the Japan Skating Federation (JSF) to decline holding the ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2011, initially allotted to the JSF and scheduled to be held in Tokyo, Japan this week.

In the meantime, the ISU has received applications to hold the Event during the months of April or May of this year from its Member federations in Austria (Graz), Canada (Vancouver), Croatia (Zagreb), Finland (Turku), Russia (Moscow) and USA (Colorado Springs or Lake Placid).

The ISU thanks those Member federations for their spontaneous reaction during these truly dramatic and exceptional circumstances emanating from the crisis in Japan and highly appreciates their efforts for having prepared an application on such short notice. The ISU reiterates that in the light of the dramatic situation in Japan the staging of sporting events becomes relatively secondary and a solution satisfying all involved is extremely difficult. Nevertheless, it is in the best interest of the ISU and its Members to hold the Championships as soon as possible.

The ISU has reviewed all applications received and after careful evaluation the ISU Council decided to allot the Championships to the Figure Skating Federation of Russia, to be held in the Megasport Arena in Moscow/Russia, on April 24-May 1, 2011.

The cooperation including in areas such as easy access to entry visas and security. The preparation for the updating of all relevant details (time schedule, Announcement, entry confirmations etc) have already begun and the ISU will revert as soon as possible with the necessary information. 

Under these extraordinary circumstances the ISU asks for the full cooperation and understanding of the skating community and all involved entities in making this a successful Event. The full cooperation of all participating ISU Member federations hopefully attending in full strength will be of utmost importance.

 Finally, the ISU is convinced that the Japanese delegation coming to Moscow deserves and will receive special attention and respect. At a time like this, words cannot express feelings but the ISU wants to let the skating friends of the Japan Skating Federation and the people of Japan know that the thoughts and wishes of the Skating family continue to remain with them.

Ottavio Cinquanta                                       Fredi Schmid  
President                                                     Director General

The Moscow bid was the successful bid of the six received by the ISU;  Russia, Canada, the United States, Finland, Croatia and Austria.  The outcome was not particularly a surprise and was expected by many in the skating world.

2011 Worlds is to be held at the Megasport Arena on April 24 through May 1.  The standard schedule for Worlds will apply with preliminary rounds beginning on Monday, 25 April, and the competition ending with the exhibition on Sunday, 1 May.  Skaters and officials would typically begin their travel tot he competition the week before.

The announced schedule leaves only four weeks for travelers to obtain visas; a time consuming process for travelers from most countries, particularly North America.  Worlds also will coincide with the annual meeting of U.S. Figure skating, the last weekend of April, and will result in some officials and skaters who normally attend the meeting being away for Worlds.

Skate Canada released a statement on the decision, saying:

OTTAWA , ON :  Skate Canada supports the decision of the International Skating Union’s (ISU) Council to award the ISU World Figure Skating Championships, 2011 to the Figure Skating Federation of Russia.  The decision was announced today that the event, postponed from its original location in Tokyo , Japan , will be held at the Megasport Arena in Moscow , Russia , on April 24-May 1, 2011.

“Despite the tragic circumstances that caused the Japanese Skating Federation to have to withdraw from hosting the event, we applaud the Figure Skating Federation of Russia for stepping forward and offering to host the event,” said William Thompson , Skate Canada CEO. 

Although Skate Canada had also provided an option to the ISU to relocate the event to Vancouver , B.C., Thompson acknowledged that Russia has solid systems in place to stage the event. “They will have strong support throughout their country to plan and execute these championships in such a tight timeline. And if we can help in anyway, Skate Canada will certainly provide assistance to our colleagues in Russia .”

Return to title page

Copyright 2011 by George S. Rossano