Alexander Gorshkov, centre back row, poses with the other ice dance medallists (from left: Irina Moiseeva, Andrei Minenkov, Lyudmila Pakhomova, Colleen O'Connor and Jim Millns) after the first Olympic ice dance final in Innsbruck
Moscow (AFP) - Russian skater Aleksandr Gorshkov, the first Olympic ice dancing champion and president of the Russian Figure Skating Federation, has died at the age of 76, the federation said Thursday.
“Aleksandr Georgyevich gave his whole life to figure skating, his contribution to the development of Russian and world skating is invaluable,”’ federation director general Alexander Kogan told the official TASS news agency.
“The whole family of Russian skaters … is in mourning with his family. This is a huge loss for us,” he added.
Gorshkov with Lyudmila Pakhomova, who was also his wife, won six world titles in seven years starting in 1969. When ice dance became an Olympic event the pair won the first gold at Innsbruck in 1976.
They also won the European championship six times.
Pakhomova died of leukaemia in 1986 aged 39.
Gorshkov had headed the Russian Figure Skating Federation since 2010.