Luke Tardif, a Canadian – born Frenchman, defeated France’s Reindeel by 39 to 67 in the fourth ballot of the International Ice Hockey Federation’s (IIHF) biennial congress in St. Petersburg, Russia on Saturday.
Sergei Goncharov (Belarus), Henrik Bach Nielsen (Denmark) and Peter Brisa (Czech Republic) were eliminated in the first three votes.
Tardiff, 68, of Trois-Rivieres, Quebec, has been president of the French Hockey Federation (FFH) since 2006.
“I just have my determination, my crazy passion for the sport, my awareness of teamwork, my respect for people and my honesty,” Tardiff said shortly after the voting results were announced. “Trust me, I will do my best to meet your expectations.”
Tardif replaced Renee Fazel, 71, who did not run for re-election after 27 years in power. The dentist and former Swiss referee will be remembered for helping NHL players reach the Olympics for the first time in 1998 in Nagano. He was inducted into the IIHF Hall of Fame on Friday.
However, despite strong repression of protests following the re-election of President Alexander, he and IIHF have been criticized for delaying Belarus’ plans to host this year’s World Championships.
The IIHF took away Belarus’ right to co-operate in the World Cup after three tournament sponsors, Skoda, Niva and Liqui Molly, said they would cancel their participation if they played matches there.
One of Tardif’s priorities is overseeing hockey tournaments at next year ‘s Olympic Winter Games in Beijing. NHL players return to the Olympics after the league refused to release their players for the 2018 Winter Games in Pyongyang.
For the 66-year-old Franz Reinde, the defeat means he will remain president of the German Ice Hockey Association (DEB), which he said he will not represent until next year.
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