Mijn hart is groot genoeg voor twee landen -2

‘It would be super cool to meet Putin’

In August 2017, the switch van Shane Perkins was completed thanks to a presidential decree from Putin.
“I’m very lucky that Russia holds sport in such high regard, especially the Olympics.
It’s a massive thing for them,” said Perkins. “The fact they had someone who wanted to become Russian and fly the flag towards Tokyo – we had a common goal. They also needed someone for the keirin event and the sprint to make a strong team.”
Perkins won two titles at the Russian Championships last year and then a silver medal in the keirin at the European Track Championships in October. “They wanted to make sure there was something left in me. Results have definitely spoken for themselves,” he said.

Putin was recently re-elected by a landslide, with some European observers saying there was a lack of genuine choice in the poll. The poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Britain has also sparked growing western tensions with Moscow.
But Perkins sees another side to the story, and would welcome a meeting with the president.
“All the stuff in the media about Putin being re-elected, it makes my blood boil a bit, so you could say I’m a passionate Russian as well,” he said.
“I’m obviously grateful that he was supportive of me coming on board. One day it would be super cool to meet him and thank him in person, and shake his hand. It’d be awesome.”