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The President of the Republic congratulated Andrus Veerpalu, the world champion

President Lennart Meri called Andrus Veerpalu and congratulated him from all his heart on the occasion of his gold medal in the 30-kilometre distance of classical skiing at Lahti world championship. ''We are all very proud of you, thank you for an excellent race,'' the President said, having followed the race on TV: As the President said, all Estonians feel always proud when the Estonian flag is proudly flying in Finland.

To the President's question how the race had been, Andrus Veerpalu replied that the feeling had been fine, it was also excellent, he said gladly, that the seconds' play on the last ten kilometres had brought such a good solution.

The President also asked when the world champion would be coming home. As Andrus Veerpalu said, he will be returning to Estonia on February 22, after the relay race. ''I am looking forward to your arrival, I will ask you to come and see me and wish to shake your hand,'' President Meri said.

Press Service of the Office of the President
Kadriorg, February 19, 2001


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