MOSCOW, February 2. /TASS/. The Olympic biathlon champion Anton Shipulin has joined the "Putin Team" movement, he wrote on Instagram.
"All of you know well that team work in relay races with coaches and athletes as friends-whom I have always valued both in competitions and in ordinary life -is always important even in individual sports. I have never concealed and will never conceal the fact that I support our country’s president Vladimir Putin and share his values and position. I can say with confidence that Putin Team is my team, my choice. I am in Putin Team," Shipulin wrote.
Shipulin is an Olympic biathlete, a bronze medalist at the 2010 Olympic Games in Vancouver, the winner of the men's IBU World Championship biathlon relay in 2017 and a three-time silver and bronze medalist of world championships. He ranked second twice in the World Cup standings, yielding the championship both times to France’s Martin Fourcade. On January 31, it emerged that Shipulin became an authorized agent for Vladimir Putin who is running for the Russian presidency as a self-nominated candidate.
On November 2, forward of Russia’s hockey team and the National Hockey League (NHL) club Alexander Ovechkin declared on his Instagram page the establishment of a social movement in support of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Among those who joined Putin Team earlier are Russian gymnasts headed by President of the Russian National Rhythmic Gymnastics Federation Irina Viner-Usmanova, SKA hockey player Ilya Kovalchuk; Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Committee for Physical Culture, Sports, Tourism and Youth Affairs and merited coach Valery Gazzayev; Pittsburgh hockey player Evgeni Malkin, volleyball player Sergey Tetyukhin, chess grandmaster Sergey Karjakin, two-time Olympic pole vaulting medalist Yelena Isinbayeva, ex-WBO light welterweight champion Ruslan Provodnikov, two-time Olympic figure skating medalist Yevgeny Plyushenko, four-time Olympic ski racing champion Nikolay Zimyatov, two-time world skiing champion Alexander Legkov, two-time world hockey champion Sergey Mozyakin and Olympic figure skating champion Dmitry Solovyov.