article by Nicholas Pucci
Born in Sovetskaja Gavan’ on July 28, 1947, Elena Novikovamarried to Vyacheslav Belov, future modern pentathlon world champion, from whom she obviously inherits the name Belova with whom she is registered in the rolls of honor of the main international competitions, belongs to the small group of fencers who can truly be considered among the greatest ever. Because for at least a decade he left his mark on the foil specialty.
Indeed, Novikova he never gets off the podium in individual or team foil events, from the 1968 Mexico City Olympics to the 1980 Moscow Games, as well as in the World Cup editionswhich are held annually, except in the Olympic years.
Therefore, in 13 years of activity, her palmares can count, at the Olympic level, 4 gold medals (3 team and one individual), a team silver and an individual bronze, while as regards the world championship reviews, Novikova won 7 gold medals in the competition team and 1 individual, plus 4 silvers (2 individual and 2 team), for a total of 18 medals (12 gold, 5 silver and only one bronze). A roadmap that has very few equals.
His best performance was in his Olympic debut at the 1968 Mexico City Games.when, in Arms room Fernando Montes de Ocacompletes a path in the individual test consisting of 15 victories and only two defeats, one of which in the final group of six which the then Novikova wins with 4 victories in her favor, with the silver prerogative of the home darling, Maria del Pilar Roldan, who surpasses the Hungarian Ildiko Ujlaki-Rejto (gold four years earlier in Tokyo 1964) for a better difference in hits, having both closed the barrage with 3 wins and 2 defeats.
Subsequently Novikova provides her decisive contribution in the conquest of the team gold for the Soviet Uniondefeating Hungary 9-3 in the final, replicating the success four years later in Monacowhen the Magyars still surrender in the final, 9-5, and in Montreal in 1976this time dominating France, 9-2, in the decisive act, edition in which she is the individual bronze medal behind the Hungarian Ildikó Tordasi and the blue Maria Consolata Collino.
Novikova completes her five-circle course in Moscow in 1980, taking silver again in the team eventdefeated in the final by France who takes revenge four years earlier, and if her six Olympic medals would already be enough to guarantee her a place in the Olympus of fencing, at the World Cup, in fact, it is certainly no lesswith no less than seven team golds (from Ankara 1970 to Melbourne 1979) and one individual (in Havana 1969), and four silvers, two of which in the individual event in which she was beaten in the final in Ankara 1970 by her compatriot Galina Gorokhova and Buenos Aires 1977 by the other Soviet Valentina Sidorova.
In short, the sixties/seventies foil bears the name of Elena Novikova.