NEWS

ETU Presidents’ Conference heads to Moscow.

By Paul Groves | 21 Dec, 2017

The President’s Conference, 2018

An ETU tradition has been to unite all Federations once a year outside the annual Congress. Known as the Presidents’ Conference, this has taken place in Vienna, Warsaw, Frankfurt and Loughborough.
Three years ago ETU took this a step further, enhancing the meeting by launching the first of its annual Galas; a chance for everyone to get together, to review the year’s hard work, to look forwards to the future, to share knowledge and experiences and to forge new friendships and partnerships and to celebrate the successes and hard work of the year. The true value of these meetings has been seen with the greater cooperation between federations, the closer working relationships and the forward movement of ETU as we strive to deliver better events, as we deliver training and development courses for coaches, technical officials and athletes and as we see our athletes regularly appear on the very topmost podiums in the world.

With the first President’s Conference in Paris, hosted by the Fédération Française de Triathlon and located at the visually stunning Comité National Olympique Sportif Français C.N.O.S.F, we celebrated a series of categories that the ETU had drawn up:

  • Female Athlete of the Year
  • Male Athlete of the Year
  • National Federation of the Year
  • Emerging / Developing National Federation of the Year
  • Technical Official of the Year
  • Organiser of the Year
  • ETU Executive Board Award


In Paris, the winners for 2015, were:

  • Nicola Spirig, SUI, Female Athlete of the Year
  • Francisco Javier Gómez Noya, ESP, Male Athlete of the Year
  • Great Britain, National Federation of the Year
  • Croatia, Emerging / Developing National Federation of the Year
  • Jorge García, ESP and Dr Béla Varga, Hun Technical Official of the Year
  • Geneva, Organiser of the Year
  • Fédération Française de Triathlon, ETU Executive Board Award


A year later, a new location and a new list of nominees. ETU headed to Rome (combining Congress with the Gala, with Kitzbühel hosting the Presidents’ Conference) and a new tradition was started, the Presidents’ Run. An incredible sight-seeing tour on foot, for those who dared, took a host of National Federation Presidents and Olympians past the iconic sights of Rome. As our compere from the Awards Gala Dinner, John Levison, posted, “Normal Sunday morning jog around the sights of Rome with at least 5 Olympians and more World and European Championships than I can count. What a way to start the day!”

This was all after the Gala night, when the awards were presented to:

The winners for 2016, were:

  • Nicola Spirig, SUI, Female Athlete of the Year
  • Alistair Brownlee, GBR, Male Athlete of the Year
  • Great Britain, National Federation of the Year
  • Slovenia, Emerging / Developing National Federation of the Year
  • Stéfane Mauris, SUI,Technical Official of the Year
  • Tiszaújváros, Organiser of the Year
  • Kaidi Kivioja, EST, ETU Executive Board Award

As Christmas and the New Year approach and as we look back over the events of 2017 the time has come now for the ETU Executive Board to consider who will be the winners of the various categories for 2017. The chance to celebrate will be taking place in a new location in March, 2018.

MOSCOW !!             Москва !!

Wow, what a location. If you have never visited, then this is the chance for you to get that “Bucket List” out and tick the box. The venue will be the stunning Radisson Royal (Рэдиссон Ройал) on the banks of the River Moskva. Due to the importance of this meeting for countries in Categories 2 and 3 which are presenting their development projects, the ETU Executive Board has agreed to provide some financial support. This is detailed in the letter that has been sent out already to the National Federations. Check out the great offer from the Radisson, but hurry!

The schedule will see a lot of work undertaken by delegates, who will begin to arrive on Thursday 8th March 2018. The ETU Executive Board will be meeting for the entire day but for those who have the day free there is a golden opportunity to see the sights and perhaps visit the most famous ballet in the world. Yes, the Bolshoi theatre, where there will be a performance of Giselle. This is the venue where Giselle, a two-act romantic ballet was first performed in USSR in 1944. If you have never been to the ballet before, then this is a wonderful way to dip your toe into the water and try it out. Click here for a link to a 2011 performance at the Bolshoi.

For the more adventurous, there is also a performance of The Idiot, an opera based on Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s novel of the same name.

Here is a link where you can book your tickets. Tickets are now available.

On Friday 9th March 2018, Conference Delegates will still be arriving and in the afternoon (16:00 – 19:00) there will be the First Development Project face-to-face meetings between ETU representatives and National Federations. Each NF will have 20 minutes and the whole process will be managed by the ETU Development Committee’ Secretary, Werner Taveirne. So, please ensure that you send him your travel details. He will then allocate a time for your presentation/discussion.

The second session for Development Project face-to-face meetings will take place at 17.30 on Saturday 10th March, 2018 and the third at 09.00 on Sunday.
Saturday, 10th March 2018, at the official hotel Radisson Royal Moscow Hotel, will see the main body of work with a full agenda. This will be followed by the Gala Dinner at the Radisson Royal Moscow.

With Russian toasts being so legendary, this will be an evening to remember.

Sunday 11th March 2018, will see the President’s Run, which will take in just a few of the most amazing views of downtown Moscow and at 11:00 there will be a round table discussion on Age Group participation as this is an area where we are seeing impressive growth.

So, for the 2017 nominations, who should be getting ready for the red carpet?

  • Female athlete of the year: Anastasia Abrosimova (RUS), Rachel Klamer (NED), Jessica Learmonth (GBR),
  • Male athlete of the year: Uxío Abuín Ares (ESP), Mario Mola (ESP), João Pereira (POR)
  • National Federation of the year: Hungary, Norway, Spain
  • Emerging/developing National Federation of the year: Croatia, Romania, Slovenia
  • Technical Official of the year: Dirk Bogaert (BEL), Daniel Martin (AUT), Sarah Taylor-Hough (GBR)
  • Organiser of the year: Banyoles (ESP), Funchal (POR), Kitzbühel (AUT), Panevėžys (LTU), Wuustwezel (BEL)
  • ETU Executive Board Award: ??

With the letters of invitation already in the “in-box” for all federations, with the compare booked again John Levinson (only the best will do) and with 2018 knocking on the door, it is time to start those travel plans and for those who have never dared, a chance to go East and to visit the biggest country in the world and to get to know a truly fascinating city.