On the eve of celebrations marking six months to go until the Paralympic Winter Games in 2014, the international "Four Nations" Ice Sledge Hockey Tournament ended at Shayba Arena. More than 100 representatives of the Sochi 2014 Organizing Committee staged the tournament in conjunction with the International Paralympic Committee and the Russian Paralympic Committee. Sochi said "Yes!" to 67 Paralympic athletes from Canada, Norway, Russia and the Czech Republic.
The international "Four Nations" Ice Sledge Hockey Tournament was the first Sochi 2014 Test Event in 2013/14 season before the Paralympic Winter Games. Over the past year, international competitions have been held in all 15 Olympic disciplines and five Paralympic sports at 10 competition venues in Sochi.
For the staging of the tournament, Shayba Arena and the Training Arena were additionally equipped with transparent boards in the reserve players area, an access system for players from the dressing rooms to the competition area by moving on artificial ice, WCs and showers in the changing rooms for athletes with disabilities, as well as stationary hand bikes in the warm-up area.
Victory at the tournament was secured by the competition favorite Team Canada, who beat the Norwegian team in the final. The Russian team took third place by defeating the Czech Republic (7-2) on the final day of competition.
President of the Organizing Committee, Dmitry Chernyshenko, noted:
“The "Four Nations" Ice Sledge Hockey Tournament has been an excellent opener for the international Sochi 2014 Test Events program in season 2013/14. More than 60 athletes from four major hockey nations got to take to the ice in the new Shayba Arena. It is here in just a few months that the Olympic hockey tournament matches and competitions in ice sledge hockey at the Paralympic Winter Games will be played. We carefully prepared for the tournament, and sought to pay particular attention to the needs of athletes with disabilities. I’d like to specially thank the 200 Sochi 2014 volunteers who helped during the event as we continue our countdown to the Games."
Notes to the Editor
The Shayba Arena is made to look like a snowdrift. It would be impossible to imagine a game of ice hockey without a "shayba" or puck. The name precisely portrays the purpose of the venue. In addition, for Russians, the cry "Shaybu!" is a universal and recognizable way of supporting hockey teams at various tournaments. Therefore, this name highlights the character of the "Russian" Winter Games.
The height of the Shayba Arena is 22.8 m, its capacity is 7,000 spectators. The venue will host Olympic ice hockey competitions and Paralympic ice sledge hockey competitions.
During the pouring of the first cubic meter of concrete, the construction workers laid a symbolic hockey puck at the foundation of the arena.
The first international Test Events were the IIHF Ice Hockey World U18 Championship, which took place at the venue in April 2013.