Report

Russia gives its Olympic medalists new Mercedes

Russian medalists at the recently concluded Sochi Winter Olympics are being rewarded quite handsomely for their service to the Motherland. In addition to the $120,000 being handed out for each gold medal, the $76,000 being awarded for slivers and $52,000 given to bronze winners, now word has come out that each of Russia's medalists will be gifted a new Mercedes-Benz.

As with the prize amounts, the type of Mercedes offered was based on what sort of medal was won. Gold medalists got a new GL-Class, silver medalists were given an ML and bronze medalists were treated to a GLK. As prices for Mercedes are higher in Russia, the cheapest model, the GLK, was the equivalent of $59,500, according to The Moscow Times. The cars were handed out by Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, pictured above with figure skating medalist Julia Lipnitskaia.

"I was a bit shocked at the car I was given," Anton Shipulin, a member of the gold-medal biathlon relay team, told RIA-Novosti. "Of course I knew what kind of model it would be, but I didn't totally believe it." For athletes not old enough to drive, like 15-year-old Lipnitskaia, their Mercedes will come complete with a driver.

In total, the Russian Olympians Foundation handed out 45 cars for the 13 golds, 11 silvers and 9 bronze medals won by Team Russia.

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