Bolshunov & co is struggling with sanctions

The sanctions hit Russia’s Olympic heroes. All medal winners must get a hefty BMW. Now smoke.

OLYMPIC HEROES: Aleksandr Bolshunov with one of his three gold medals in China – after five-mile gold.

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Since 2006, it has been a tradition that winners of Russian medals at the Olympics have received foreign cars as prizes – in addition to cash prizes for their achievements during the Olympics.

After the Tokyo Olympics in 2020, the gold winner gets a BMW X5 (which costs about a million kroner in Norway), while other medal winners get a BMW X3.

This time too, the winner of the Russian medal was promised a foreign car (by the way, foreign car is a separate word in Russian), but now it will not happen – as a result of sanctions.


There is now a debate about what sports stars should be getting. The famous TV commentator in biathlon and cross-country skiing Dmitry Gubernyev, said according to sport24:

– It’s a bit difficult with the car now. “Lada Kalina” is not honorable to give, so they better get the money, he said about the possibility of athletes getting Russian-made cars.

State support funds for the Olympics, which will pay for the party, have also been used, but others are providing alternative solutions. This applies, for example, to one of Russia’s most famous coaches, figure skating legend Tarasova:

– It would be nice if they could get an apartment, he said according to

In Soviet times, it was very common for athletes to receive apartments as prizes if they contributed to a major international achievement – and thus did not have to stand in endless housing queues during communism.

Politicians don’t agree

Famous politician (and curly president) Dmitry Svyshchov has proposed that the heroes of the Olympics should get an apartmentwhile another politician, Svetlana Zjurova (former figure skating), believe it will work Russians used to be angry, after that many were queuing for housing even now.

In addition to the car, the winner of the Olympic medal was promised four million rubles for gold, 2.5 million rubles for silver and 1.7 million rubles for bronze. The ruble exchange rate has fluctuated sharply since the war began, but before the war it was equivalent to 440,000 kroner for gold, 275,000 kroner for silver, and 190,000 kroner for bronze.

For Bolshunov, who took three gold, one silver and one bronze, it would be equivalent to about 1.8 million kroner from the state.

Bolshunov was also promoted to captain of Putin’s army after the Olympics. – He also received strong criticism after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, in part because he took the stage at Putin’s propaganda event during the eight-year anniversary of the annexation of Crimea.

Britney Kirk

"Infuriatingly humble coffee guru. Travel practitioner. Freelance zombie fanatic. Certified problem solver. Food scholar. Student."

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