“Hockey Legends in Gubkin” Charity Campaign
Some of the legendary participants in the event were two-time Olympic gold medalist (1972, 1976), 1980 Olympic silver medalist, an eight-time World champion Boris Mikhailov; 1984 Olympic gold medalist, three-time World and European champion Sergey Shepelyev; 1988 Olympic gold medalist, three-time World champion Ilya Byakin; 1980 Olympic silver medalist, six-time World champion Yuri Lebedev; 1980 Olympic silver medalist, four-time World champion Vladimir Golikov; and six-time World and European champion Vyacheslav Anisin.
The campaign was aimed at giving a fresh impetus to ice hockey in Gubkin, as well as motivating and inspiring the young residents to strive towards sporting achievements and a healthy lifestyle.
Hundreds of spectators gathered at the Gubkin stadium. The campaign involved continuous interactions with the sports-stars: right after the press-conference the athletes held master-classes with pupils of the town’s Youth Sports School, from the youngest, 6-year-olds, to older pupils of 14. The young people had a unique opportunity to learn ice hockey techniques and tactics from internationally renowned hockey players who have won numerous medals and considerable sporting glory for their country, in Europe and in the world.
“We travel to small towns and see how the eyes of local children light up at the chance to get involved in the sport. So we’ve set ourselves a goal — to explain and show how to train properly and build up your willpower and to succeed. Because it’s from here, from the provinces, that many of today’s star-athletes began their journey,” — said 1988 Olympic gold medalist and three-time World champion, Ilya Byakin.
The promising young athletes of the town received prizes and gifts from the hands of the two-time Olympic champion Boris Mikhailov. Moreover, each of the legendary players took the time to sign autographs for anyone in Gubkin who asked.
To bring the campaign to an end, the hockey stars played a match against the Gubkin veteran team. The result was an amicable draw: 6:6.
“Hockey Legends in Gubkin” is not the first such campaign supported by the Art, Science, and Sport Charity Foundation. In January 2014 Boris Mikhailov, Vyacheslav Starshinov, Alexander Pashkov, Stanislav Petukhov, Ilya Byakin, Yuri Blinov, Alexander Volchkov and Alexander Martyniuk visited Zheleznogorsk in the Kursk Region for a similar event.