Russia’s Dynamic Duo Hits the Slopes

By Sadie Bass

Jan 4, 2010 10:32am

ABC's Alexander Marquardt reports from Moscow: While the American president and vice president escaped Washington’s winter by heading for the islands (Hawaii and the US Virgin Islands, respectively), Russia’s leadership embraced their country’s bitter cold and hit the slopes. President Dmitry Medvedev and Prime Minister Vladimir Putin bundled up on Sunday for a day of skiing together at the Krasnaya Polyana ski resort, one of the venues for the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics. The political “tandem” also indulged in some tandem snowmobiling, with Medvedev going notably helmet-less as he raced around the Black Sea resort with Putin seated behind him. As is always the case when the pair is together, the question of who actually leads Russia arose, though this time from an unexpected corner. “Where is the president?” a young boy asked Medvedev. “That’s me!” Medvedev laughed. The president is spending the holidays with his family at the resort where the 2014 Olympics alpine skiing events will be held, state-run RIA Novosti reports. Russia plans to spend more than $33 billion on the Games which organizers plan to be the greenest ever. Sunday’s photo-op had Russia’s two most powerful men glad-handing with tourists, sipping tea in a mountain cafe and engaging in serious-looking conversation. “Action Man” Putin is no stranger to highly-produced photo shoots highlighting his athletic prowess: two weeks ago he was filmed sparring with Russia’s national judo team and over the summer he was photographed shirtless riding a horse in Siberia.

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