Trentino – Italy, Dec 14, 2013: “Every Universiade is a unique experience: and I am really touched from I’ve seen here in Trentino.” The President of FISU (International University Sports Federation), Claude-Louis Gallien, unexpectedly visited the Ice Arena of Cavalese during the Ice Hockey match Canada vs Ukraine. The Canadians won with the final score of 11:0. The Number One of FISU looked very enthusiastic about this edition of Winter Universiade.
“Organizing this event has been a challenge because of the short time the OC had at their disposal, but the choice made about an Universiade here in Trentino wasn’t accidental. Here we have the stunning Dolomites and all sports venues necessary for such an event.”
Claude-Louis Gallien, had you ever visited these resorts before?
“No, I hadn’t, but this Universiade represents the excellent occasion to discover new places. However, ice and snow are in perfect conditions, helped by the beautiful weather we’re having. Furthermore, we can rely on our skillful and experienced team who can deal with the organization of such top-level international events. People here know how to work in international contexts”.
Considering your long experience in Universiade, what has changed in the international university sports?
“The technical level is very high, both in the Winter and in the Summer Universiade. But the spirit is always the same: a milieu composed of young boys and girls, driven by people full of passion.”
How is it possible that every event, despite its uniqueness, always complies with the standards of your Federation?
“We work to guarantee the highest qualitative standards to every hosting country. First of all, it is essential to share and transfer all technical knowledge acquired from one edition to the other: for example, from Shenzhen (China 2011) to Kazan (Russia 2013). But this is not enough: the most important is to train professional teams so that they could work at best and guarantee a trait d’union among the different editions. Indeed, there are countries like China that have the means to make fantastic editions. But, in this case, human resources are the key element.”
How can you conciliate the competitive spirit with the goliardic spirit of the Universiade?
“Athletes are not under an exaggerated pressure – that’s a very important feature. First of all, because you can live the whole Universiade in a different way. Furthermore, it’s precisely the fact of not feeling any pressure on their shoulders which boosts all athletes to do their best and to achieve possible unexpected results during the Universiade. Indeed delegations do invest a lot in the event, presenting their top teams, as did the Russian delegation in Kazan. In fact the famous record established by the runner Pietro Mennea (19”72 at the Summer Universiade Mexico City 1979, editor’s note) which is known worldwide, didn’t come by chance.” —- Photo by: Federico Modica
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