Date: 21 March 2019, 17:21, READ:
"There are always challenges, in every field where work is carried out. Our task is to solve these issues by keeping a good balance between what we have and what we aim for.
And this is one of the main purposes of the Executive Committee of the International Gymnastics Federation (FIG) which held this year’s first meeting at the FIG headquarters in Lausanne (SUI) on February 19 & 20. When the list of the top 10 Meritorious Federations was announced, I was proud to realise that 9 from those 10 federations were European. I congratulate the gymnastics federations of Europe which are included in this ranking. I encourage other continental federations to try to be more active and reach the level of these deserving federations. And I believe that European federations will keep a good balance between hosting the World and European Championships as well.
Along with the issues raised last year, we also discussed and finalised modifications to the 2020 Technical Regulations which will be submitted for approval to the FIG Council in May. Among these changes, I would like to emphasise the prospective and very interesting format of the World Championships. We already should start thinking of the change of competition format of the UEG events to conform with the FIG competitions. The important point here might be balancing the events calendar.
Another exciting change awaits us in the 2024 Olympic Games Qualification procedures. It is always difficult to decide regarding changes to the qualification system which causes a lot of debates. We all remember the times when there was only one possibility to qualify for the Games through the World Championships. Then, the test event was established, giving the athletes a second chance to qualify. But now, the European Championships and World Cup events also qualify for the Olympic Games.
The first World Cup of this kind in Trampoline Gymnastics was held in Baku (AZE) on February 16 & 17. Baku hosted the World Cup series in this gymnastics discipline for the last 4 years. If we compare the number of competitors with previous years, we see that it has doubled and it was almost equal to the number of participants of the World Championships. Obviously, the significance of the World Cup series has increased after they started to qualify for the most popular multi-sport event of the universe.
This qualification process began for Artistic gymnasts in November 2018 and continued in Melbourne (AUS) in February. Taking this opportunity, I wish our gymnasts good luck and I believe that they will be on the top with their performances at all qualification events.
The UEG Technical Committees are fully focused on guaranteeing the success of this year’s European Championships. Coordination meetings with the LOC’s and the draw defining the starting order of athletes have already been heldfor Europeans in Artistic, Rhythmic and Aerobic Gymnastics. And the nominative list of participants of the European Championships in Szczecin (POL) has been published on our website.
Meanwhile, I visited Bosnia and Herzegovina. I familiarised myself with the conditions they have for training in the different gymnastics disciplines and met with the Authorities of the National Olympic Committee and the National Federation. Today, they do not have favourable conditions for training and sufficient budget for proper development. We need to think how we can assist them as this country has a tradition in Artistic and Rhythmic gymnastics. 30 years have passed since its capital Sarajevo hosted the World Championships in Rhythmic Gymnastics
We have prolonged our contract with SmartScoring till the end of 2021. This means that the Organisers of the European Championships will still be provided with results and other services concerned for the years to come. Our joint successful work ensures long-term cooperation between our organisations.
Joint efforts of our athletes, our Authorities, our affiliated Federations, our partners help us to keep the balance, not only on the Field of Play but in universal gymnastics overall,” he said.