P1 takes a looks at the Sukhoi Sportjet. With sport being a global, multi billion dollar business, it’s no wonder someone has finally come up with an aircraft designed with athletic teams in mind.
Here’s a smart idea. With so many sports teams around the world travelling on private jets (some of them tailor-made to accommodate their over-sized frames), someone has finally come up with an aircraft dedicated to their unique needs.
Introduced at the Farnborough International Airshow, SportJet is the third product in the Sukhoi Civil Aircraft range, along with the Sukhoi Superjet 100 (SSJ100) and the Sukhoi Business Jet (SBJ).
Based on the SSJ100, which was first delivered to European airline CityJet in May, the Sportjet concept is developed in partnership with sports physicians, experts and managers and features a host of features to make sure athletes arrive in the best condition possible – perfect if you are flying in for a football match or halfway around the world to compete in the Olympics.
The Sportjet will offer innovative medical and IT solutions for rest and recovery for athletes. The cabin is divided into four functional areas. The “Main Team Flight Zone” is equipped with 24 business-class seats, which unfold to a horizontal position, with integrated biomedical gadgets including a bioimpedance sensor, pulse oximeter, data reading and processing unit, and an “Airband” designed to monitor the athlete’s status during flight.
The “Recovery/Medical-Biological Zone” comes equipped with a massage table, equipment for recuperative procedures and a “Diagnostic Capsule” with a display for physiological data, an ECG recorder, spirometer, hypoxic generator, blood pressure monitor, pulse oximeter and a dynamometer.
The “Coach Zone” comes fitted with 6 VIP seats, a folding table, a wardrobe and a 4-seater sofa designed for discussions of game strategies.
Finally, the “Personnel Zone” comes equipped with 10 economy-class seats, dedicated to the team’s massage specialists, administrators and equipment managers. The aircraft also has a “smart toilet,” which registers dehydration.
The Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) has signed a partnership agreement with Sukhoi, making them an official supplier of the ROC and the Russian Olympic Team. The agreement was signed by Alexander Zhukov, President of the Russian Olympic Committee, Member of the International Olympic Committee and Ilya Tarasenko, President of Sukhoi.
“One of the Russian Olympic Committee’s priorities is to render every assistance in providing comfortable conditions for athletes to train in preparation for the Olympic Games,” said Zhukov. “Essentially, thanks to our collaborative efforts, there will appear a new niche on the Russian market that will provide great opportunities to develop an entire market segment. At the same time Russian teams will get a unique top service which will, no doubt, be conducive to achieving best results.”
Tarasenko said he saw becoming part of the Olympic family as strategically important for Sukhoi.
“Today, the market for air transportation for sports purposes is estimated at US$600 million. With the SportJet by Sukhoi we are planning to increase sales and generate demand for premium aircraft that provide unprecedented service for passengers.”
The Sportjet is also capable of landing at smaller airports, putting teams closer to their destination.