Interview with Maxim Kovtun. About Russian Nationals, upcoming competitions and working with a new coach.
Maxim, it seems that the whole this season is correction of mistakes.
– I really have such period now…..I strongly believe that it’s transitional.I perform badly, at least for my level it’s a failure. Recent Russian Nationals can be called rather average. The period of instability lasts for two and a half seasons. I fail one program or another…. But I’m not going to give up. I know my capabilities and I know that if I go back to the previous level, everything will be different. Everyone says “Why, why don’t you come back?” So-called sofa experts mainly say this. But every day I get up at 6.45 and to work till evening. Plus added more psychological work … In the evening, when I’d like to go home and sleep I need to go to the other end of Moscow to work with the psychologist. And this work turned out quite difficult. But I understand how necessary it is and I see the results …
We talked many times. You really have become calmer.
– Yes you are right. Earlier, before I moved to Inna Germanovna I could beat the board, kicked an ice in anger. But now it’s nothing like this. I’m calm no matter how badly the practice goes. I have not seen much people who did not break after such a series of setbacks. But I don’t break. I believe that everything just can’t end like this. I have to overcome myself.
You was the best in the free program, but what happened in the short?
– Alexei Mishin said that stability it is not a ten out of ten, it’s one but in the right moment. I think at trainings it turns out, I have to learn to get together at the right time. But along with that came a wild desire to prove everything to everyone. This desire overrides me … That’s what happened in the short program at the Russian Nationals. Now I need to learn how to deal with this desire. I did it in the free program. Just did my job. Yesterday I heard Maxim Trankov’s comment, who said that to get back to the previous level you need to take a step back, then to make a major breakthrough. I think there is some truth in his words, I agree with him. Probably, together with the coach we’ll simplify somewhere the program, but will bring it to perfect execution. So I could feel the sense of fight, passion … I’ve already forgot what it is.
How the things are going with a new coach?
– The best part is that every day I come to practice with a smile. I come to the place with positive energy. I really work hard every day and even when something does not work, I can see how Inna Germanovna is worrying. Somehow she became a very close person to me. I am grateful to her that she believes in me and finds the right words.
If it’s not a secret, which one?
– You know, if you could answer this question, everyone could have become a coach. A good one. Just right now open a training manual, read which words to say and go! In our sport everything is so subtly …It’s like walking not even on a rope, but on a thin fishing line over the abyss … And Inna Germanovna knows what and when to say, how to set. It helps me a lot.
Now starts the main competitions – European and World Championships. How will you prepare?
– December 30 – skating, on January 2 – back on the ice. Break is out of the question, we don’t have time for it. Need to work. I will have the whole rest of my life for vacations. I will listen to the coach, and, of course, will continue to work with a psychologist.
Unpleasant and strange situation happened with Julia Lipnitskaya, who fell on the sidewalk and couldn’t compete at the Russian Championships. You have always been in touch, do you support her now? How is she going through this difficult time?
– Of course, we talk. I think that in some way what happens to her is for the better. Let her come a little to herself, understand what is going on in her life. She needs to heal all injuries quietly, not to rush. Get into full fighting readiness. And then show her best, prove. And Julia can do it! At least she has a great desire. We’re similar in this, she also has to get angry, same as me. Julia and I somehow entered this bad period synchronously. But it’s ok. We are provincial guys, we are perky. We’ll take ours.
How hard is it to lose to the guys whom last year you easily beat? The same Misha Kolyada, for example …
– Well, how to say….The fact that I’m in a top three at Russian Nationals with one program says something. I lost because of myself. In the short program I flew out of the fight, it was clear. And then it was necessary to overcome myself, to go and skate for those people who have come here to watch decent figure skating. Make a holiday for them. And also for those who do not wish me luck to show that things are not so simple. There are a lot of spiteful critics. Although I gave them a reason. But everything can be changed in five minutes by going on the ice. I’m only 21 years old, thank God I have no injuries, I take care of myself, I work a lot. I feel that the transition period is about to end and everything will be different.