The Estonian Olympic Committee (EOK) on Wednesday recognized over 200 athletes who had won medals for Estonia across a wide variety of disciplines, through 2022.
Speaking at the reception, held at Tallinn's Hilton Hotel (see gallery), EOK chair Urmas Sõõrumaa said: "Athletes are ambassadors of their country, for your achievements the national flag rises and the national anthem is played."
"This is the only field in the world in which such an honor can be shared. I hope that, on the occasion of the EOK's centennial, you will surpass yourself, achieving even better results and higher places. May your personal best be yours goal, in our anniversary year," he went on.
Invitees included medal winners in non-olympic, as well as olympic, disciplines, at championships held at both European and World level through 2022.
Wrestler Epp Mäe was honored for her bronze at the world championships, as was rower Allar Raja, one quarter of the coxed quadruple sculls (coxed fours) team that won a silver medal at the European Rowing Coastal Championships (ERCC) last autumn.
Sõõrumaa thanked all coaches, assistants, support staff, families and friends, as well as the athletes themselves.
A total of 43 Estonian athletes won gold medals at various world Championships last year, while 204 won medals at one competition or another, including the European Athletics Championships in Munich in 2022.
An equivalent event for youth athletes is to be held by the EOK Thursday evening, at the KUMU art museum.
Editor: Andrew Whyte, Henrik Laever