Lausanne / Switzerland

On October 13, 2017 over 370 guests attended a celebratory and entertaining evening at the Olympic Museum in Lausanne, Switzerland on the occasion of the international Skating Union’s (ISU) 125th anniversary.

The evening started with the unveiling of an ice sculpture of the ISU’s 125th logo followed by a spectacular performance, featuring a band of robbers whose attempt to steal the golden skate was blocked by the lady dressed in gold, a role starring Swiss contortionist Nina Burri. She returned the golden skate to the ISU President Mr. Jan Dijkema for safe keeping.

The troupe of artists then lead the dignitaries through the Olympic Museum to take their seats for the gala dinner. A video showing ice skating before the founding of the ISU was played followed by an opening speech by the ISU Secretary General Mr. Fredi Schmid and the ISU President: “it is really a great pleasure for me as ISU President to extend a warm welcome to all of you at the 125th Anniversary of the ISU. I am very grateful for your attendance: the ISU Honorary President, ISU Honorary Members, ISU Member Federations, ISU Office Holders and staff, ISU partners, and representatives of the International Olympic Committee, International Federations, sponsors and City of Lausanne. A special word of appreciation goes to the greatest skating champions over the last decades who are here this evening. They have played a very significant role in our beloved sport. It is really great that all of you are joining us here tonight.”



Each ISU discipline was represented by a number of skating champions who were introduced and whose achievements were acknowledged. “Our sports would be nothing without Champions” stated Mr. Tron Espeli ISU Vice President Speed Skating who introduced Speed Skating Champions:


Bob de Jong (NED) - Olympic Champion and seven time World Champion
Beixing Wang (CHN) – World Champion
Svetlana Zhurova (RUS) -  Olympic Champion and two time World Champion
Gunda Niemann-Stirnemann (GER) – three time Olympic Champion and 19 time World Champion
Ippolito Sanfratello (ITA) – Olympic Champion


Yang Yang A (CHN) headed the Short Track Speed Skating table and presented:

 Wim de Deyne (BEL) - Short Track Speed Skating Technical Committee Coach
Hugo Herrnhof (ITA) – Olympic and World Champion

Sun-Yu Jin (KOR) – three time Oylmpic Champion and eight time World Champion
Nathalie Lambert (CAN) – Olympic Champion and 15 time World Champion
Evgenia Radanova (BUL) - World Champion
Yang Yang A (CHN) - two times Olympic Champion and 18 times World Champion
Satoru Terao (JPN) -  World Champion
Wilf O’Reilly (GBR) – World Champion
So-Hee Kim (KOR) – Olympic and World Champion (not on picture)


Mr. Alexander Lakernik (Vice President Figure Skating) and Mr. John Coughlin chair of the ISU Athletes Commission introduced the Figure Skating Champions:

Michelle Kwan (USA) – Olympic silver medalist and five time World Champion
Mike Ando, (JPN) – Two time World Champion
Nathalie Péchalat (FRA) – two time European Ice Dance Champion
Krisztina Regöczy and Andras Sallay (HUN) – Olympic silver medalist and World Ice Dance Champions
Susana Rahkamo (FIN) – European Ice Dance Champion
Nathalie Lindqvist (SWE) – Synchronized Skating World Champion
Sini Aarnio-Kurki (FIN) – Synchronized Skating three time World Champion
Alexander Gorshkov (RUS) – Olympic Ice Dance Champion and six time World Champion
Stéphane Lambiel (SUI) – Olympic silver medalist and two time World Champion
Xue Shen and Hongbo Zhao (CHN) – Olympic Pair Skating Champions and three time World Champion




Mr. Oscar Tosato, Director of Sports and social cohesion of the City of Lausanne welcomed the guests to the Olympic capital and looked towards 2020 Lausanne Youth Olympic Games. Mr. Kit McConnell, IOC Sports Director also extended his appreciation and reminded those present of the strong and historical involvement of the ISU within the Olympic movement.

The gala dinner was interlaced with various artistic performances featuring lights, fire and photographs from the last 125 year of ISU Sports.

Mr. Dijkema closed the evening by concluding: “Let us inspire adults and children worldwide with ice skating! Let us shape the future together with a huge passion for our sport - in the footsteps of our founders!”

The full speech of the ISU President is available to read here.