Friday 23 September 2016, 18:58

Cat, tiger and wolf unveiled: 2018 mascot race is on

The campaign to decide which character becomes the Official Mascot for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia™ reached its final stage this evening with the highly anticipated unveiling of the designs of the three candidates: a cat, a tiger and a wolf. The dynamic trio were presented today at 20:18 local time as one of the highlights of the annual Circle of Light Moscow International Festival at the iconic Moscow State University (MSU).

Immediately following the unveiling of the mascot candidates, the online vote was made available for Russian fans on dedicated platforms. The conclusion of the voting is set to take place on 21 October on live television. Russian fans have been part of the selection process of a worthy Official Mascot right from the beginning. It is also fitting that they will now choose the winner following a thorough process.

“It is the most interactive FIFA World Cup brand creation so far. From the very start, we invited the Russian public to have a say on the preferred character types, later encouraging local talent to participate in submitting designs. Today, we are again inviting them to cast their vote and decide which one should become the Official Mascot of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia," FIFA Secretary General Fatma Samoura explained.

The three mascot candidates are the result of an exciting national competition that saw numerous imaginative mascot ideas submitted by some of Russia’s finest art and design students to create an iconic character that best captures the essence of the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia. The creations were all based on the input of 51,000 Russian youngsters, who participated in an online survey where they chose their preferred characteristics for the Official Mascot, in a creative journey that began in May 2015.

Whichever character the final voters decide upon, we can be certain that any of the three characters presented today in Moscow will be a fantastic ambassador for the tournament. Whether it is the smart and agile cat, the strong and energetic tiger or the charming and confident wolf that wins the heart of the Russian people, he is sure to become a wonderful addition in the long and prestigious history of FIFA World Cup Officials Mascots.

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