Opening the Olympic season for the Russian team

Sept 22, 2017
By  Oxana Shkrebtienko (LMDJ)
Photos ©  Oxana Shkrebtienko (LMDJ)

The test skating of the Russian national team took place at September 9 and 10 in Sochi. It was interesting to see the first performances of new programs for the upcoming Olympic season.

Ice Dance

The ice dance team leaders Ekaterina Bobrova and Dmitri Soloviev demonstrated two very good dances and confirmed their ambitions for the crown in world ice dance. Their free program was choreographed by Radu Poklitaru in modern style and tells the love story of a blind girl. It was highly appreciated by specialists and spectators.
The free dance of Victoria Sinitsyna and Nikita Katsalapov to RachmaninovÂ’s music also won the affection of the public and received a storm of applause.
Visitors also liked the free dance from Betina Popova/ Sergei Mozgov to the music of Carmen which was performed with drive and very emotionally.
The public in Sochi also got to see the debut of two new couples: Anabelle Morozov / Andrei Bagin and Elena Ilinykh / Anton Shibnev.


In single skating no male skater was able to show total readiness for the competitions, as all of them skated both programs with some mistakes. Sergei Voronov was the only skater who landed clean quads in both programs. This season his programs, a tango by Astor Piazzola in the short program and Sarabanda in the free skate, were choreographed by Misha Ge and seem very exciting.
Andrei Lazukin, a student of Alexei Mishin, in his debut senior season skated a short program in a Spanish flamenco style and demonstrated interesting choreography and displayed strong program execution.
Mikhail Kolyada, the national champion of Russia 2017, unfortunately looked not so forceful this time. But the athletes and their coachers hope to keep up the form during the season.


The pairs were traditionally strong, with nice new programs and clean elements executed. Natalia Zabiako / Alexandr Enbert skated a very beautiful free program to the ballet sounds of Sleeping Beauty.
Evgenia Tarasova / Vladimir Morozov, the Russian and European champions in 2017, looked powerful in the beginning of the season, even with a few mistakes.
The young couple Alisa Efimova / Alexandr Korovin moved to coach Oleg Vasiliev for this season. He created two marvelous programs for them and it seems like this tandem promises to be interesting in the future.


At the end, the Russian ladies! An outstanding generation, all Olympic hopefuls for the Russian Olympic team. The season will be so tense for them, as not less then 6 skaters fight for only 3 slots in the team. Evgenia Medvedeva, the World champion 2017, is one of the favorites in this battle. She demonstrated nice programs and a good form in Sochi. In her short program she tells the tale of the soul that leaves the body at the moment of death and returns back with the last sigh. This unusual concept was created by choreographer Ilia Averbukh, who worked with Evgenia during the last two seasons.
Alina Zagitova, the Junior World champion, started her first senior season this year. She skated a new short program Swan Lake and, as in the free skate to Don Quixote, all the jumps were landed in the second part of the routine.
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva, Elena Radionova and Maria Sotskova were also full of determination to prove their ambitions in the team.

Soon we will see the athletes in the competitions of Challenge and Grand Prix series; let's wish them good luck!

Want to see more images of this competition? Then check out the photoalbum here!


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