Official website of 16th FINA World Championships 2015 in Kazan
16th FINA World Championships

July 24 - August 9, 2015

Cosmonaut Alexander Samokutyaev: The idea to send a capsule with water from the Kazanka River into space has been approved immediately

28.07.2015, 18:08 Interviews
In the FINA Water World Park, every visitor can feel the historical moment and see the symbol of the Championships, the capsule with water from the Kazanka River that spent 167 days in space. It is believed that the water from the Kazanka River charged with space energy will boost our athletes with the space velocity. The symbol of the 2015 FINA World Championships was taken to the International Space Station (ISS) orbit and back to the Earth by the Kazan 2015 Ambassador, cosmonaut Alexander Samokutyaev.

– Alexander, what was it like when you were appointed as a spacecraft commander with a mission to bring the symbol of the 2015 FINA World Championships to the orbit?

– Of course, first of all, it is big responsibility to Russia, to the people who chose me, and of course to the Championships organisers. In fact, I was much more preoccupied with the capsule itself, with water inside, I had to keep it safe, but fortunately nothing happened! We brought it back, handed over to the organisers, and everyone was happy.

– How did you come to the idea of sending a capsule into space?

– Well, we tend to use our so-called ‘weapon’, which is the manned space vehicles, to promote our social and sports programmes. We discuss many of them and then decide how to make them interesting. The idea to send the symbol of the FINA World Championships, a capsule with water from the Kazanka River into space, was approved very quickly.

– What is your mission as a Kazan 2015 Ambassador?

– First, to inspire Russian youth to go in for water sports, this is the main purpose for which the ambassadors are here. Then, to show the whole planet that Russian sports, in particular water sports are quite prosperous.

– Cosmonauts are athletes, too. Do you think that participants of the 16th FINA World Championships could qualify for a space flight?

– Every citizen of the Russian Federation complying with certain criteria could be a cosmonaut, check the Roskosmos website for more information on that.

– What events have you been able to visit so far? What do you think about athletes’ training? What team impressed you most?

– We have very strong competitors! First of all, I would say the Chinese team is our main rival, but I also think that our athletes are no worse and have been trained at the very high level, and I believe that we can be champions in a number of disciplines!

Press Office of Organising Committee for 16th FINA World Championships