facebook instagram youtube

Today celebrates the Birthday

Ankur Rawat
IAU position: Athlet

Oleg Dorofejev: “All the main victories are still ahead, I strongly believe it!”


On August 24, 2018 one more sports organization was established. The date is very important to us as it was the day when the National Crossbow Shooting Federation of Latvia, that has recently joined IAU, was founded. Oleg Dorofejev, the President of the youngest National Federation told us about the history of its creation, its current state, future plans and perspectives.

-Mr. Dorofejev, first of all, I’d like to congratulate you, personally, and Latvian National Crossbow Shooting Federation on the official recognition as a new Member Federation of IAU.

- Thank you very much! It’s a really significant event for all of us.

- In this regard, I’d like to ask you what are, in your opinion, the prospects for future development of Latvian National Federation as a Member Federation of IAU?

- Joining International Crossbow Shooting Union has certainly opened new horizons for us. We have the opportunity now to participate officially in major international tournaments, compete and represent our country. This will provide our athletes with more practice and new experience. In the future, we are going to take part in the organizational issues settlement. Meanwhile we are at the beginning of this way and I believe we’ll have our fair say and be active and initiative!

- What can you say about the membership of Latvian National Federation? How many athletes and other members does it comprise?

- At the moment there are only 3 of us, official representatives of Latvian National Federation. Despite our small membership, we are well qualified and highly professional. However, in case of sportsmen – members of the Federation, things are not so good due to the lack of material resources.

- What things, in particular, are missing?

- Actually, crossbows. It is possible, for example, to buy simple crossbows for hunting on the Internet. And the ones we need, sport crossbows (field or match) are produced only on a special order in private companies in Croatia, France, Germany and some other countries. Furthermore, their price is high. That’s why we are considering the idea of producing crossbows ourselves as our Russian colleagues do.

- When are you going to start implementing the idea?

- We’ve already launched it! It could not be delayed anymore. There already exist some drafts and samples. In a month we’re going to start assembly and testing. We’ve already ordered all the metal and wooden parts and we’re trying to settle the issue of arms for crossbows. To our mind, it will be more profitable and cheaper.

- How popular is crossbow shooting in Latvia?

- Crossbow shooting in Latvia has a distinguished history. Even during the Soviet times, crossbow shooting was a rather popular sport and our Latvian athletes showed outstanding results. As far as I know, there was also a crossbow-shooting club in Riga in the post-Soviet period, but then, due to the lack of the control and finance, it didn’t prove to be successful. Some athletes resigned and there were no decent ones to replace them… In the modern history of Latvia, before the foundation of the National Crossbow Shooting Federation of Latvia, this kind of sport didn’t exist, wasn’t mentioned anywhere and didn’t develop either. Thus, we are pioneers, so to say. (laughs) Our goal now is to start everything from scratch, develop and promote crossbow shooting as well as archery.

- Are you going to develop both divisions: Field and Match?

- We are planning to start with field crossbow promotion. It’s a bit more difficult with match division as it requires certain shooting range and the equipment is also problematic. There should always be something to start with and then it will be possible to solve problems gradually. Today it’s Field, next time it will be Match as well.

- You probably cooperate with some neighboring countries – IAU Member Federations, don’t you?

- Yes, we do. We interact actively with our colleagues from Russia and Estonia, learn and benefit from their experience. For example, after the latest European Championship that was held in Pärnu in 2018, we had the idea of doing some experiments. The competition “Carousel” also inspired us to try something new. Thus, we are considering modernization of crossbow shooting a little bit and conducting competitions in the same way as in darts.

- And what is the highlight then?

- According to the rules, athletes aspire to hit the centre of the target (the bull’s eye) whereas in darts the main idea is to hit the sectors, not the centre. This principle is the basic one for crossbow athletes to shoot at certain sectors, monitor and count the scores, figure out how many scores are still necessary to get, and therefore which sector is to shoot at. So we are going to make crossbow shooting competitions more diverse, spectacular and exciting.

- Did you face any problems in the process of Latvian Crossbow Shooting Federation foundation? Is a crossbow considered to be a weapon according to Latvian legislation? Are there any restrictions concerning its storage and transportation?

- Relatively recently there have been several attempts in our country to amend the legislation and allow bow and crossbow hunting, but these amendments were not accepted by the government. Bow and crossbow hunting is restricted! However, a sport crossbow is not regarded as a weapon and there are no problems with its storage and transportation. Unfortunately, we had an unpleasant incident with the police when we bought some spare parts of match rifles – triggers and butts. All of them were withdrawn and thus the realization of our plans was set several years back.

- Your National Federation is the youngest one in IAU, but rater ambitious. Latvia is applying for holding one of the stages of the World Cup. Do you think it is a short-term or long-term prospective?

- In my view, it’s a short-term prospective. We have the facilities: sports grounds, targets, developed infrastructure, governmental support. By the way, Ventspils is a very beautiful city, located on the Baltic Sea shore. The main problem now is the lack of qualified crossbow shooters, so there is no opportunity to present a team that could show a good result at the competitions. But we’ve already been working in this direction.


- Do you mean that one of your goals is preparation and education of young athletes as well as retraining of the active ones?

- Yes, that’s right. The focus is, surely, on the young and on the bullet shooters, archers, biathlete, enthusiasts and amateur shooters. We will build up a team and try taking part in major competitions, train and learn from our colleagues and future rivals. (laughs)

- We’ve just outlined your future plans and goals, and what about your dream? Could you tell us what is the President of National Crossbow Shooting Federation of Latvia dreaming about?

- Dreams.. (thoughtfully). I’m dreaming about making my own crossbow team, a good team that will successfully represent our country at the competitions. Not to be ashamed for them. Like any leader, perhaps, I dream of a positive outcome.

- There is a lot of difficult work to be done by you personally and Latvian National Federation, which is simply impossible without love for this kind of sport. How did it arise? How did it happen that crossbow shooting appealed to you?

- I really love shooting myself and all shooting sports. I don’t know where it came from, maybe it’s a kind of mentality or genes, but I really enjoy it. I started as an archer, now I’m trying a crossbow.

- What about your progress in crossbow shooting?

- There is not much to tell about so far (laughs). I haven’t participated in international competitions, I haven’t tried my hand there yet (laughs).

- So all the main victories are still ahead, aren’t they?

- Absolutely! I believe the victories are yet to come, in my individual event and in the team event also. We’ve just made the first step, but a very important one. As runners say, we’ve made a crouch start and we need to wait for a while to see what awaits for us at the finish line.