Bradie Tennell: I have been often called “brandy”
Interview with Bradie Tennell for Russian media at the Grand Prix Final 2019.
by Konstantin Lesik for sport24.ru dd. December 16th, 2019
How do you assess the beginning and the first half of the season?
– Pretty good. I recovered after a foot injury this summer. My main goal for the first half of the season was to get to the Grand Prix Final. I skated at the Grand Prix after a month of training only, so I was not sure that I would succeed. But I just went and skated as I trained and wanted. I’m Very glad to get into the Final.
What impressions do you have from the Final?
– I think it was a very good experience for me. There was tension here, so I’m glad I was able to show two very strong skates. Of course, there are still things I need to work on. Now I am going to go home and work hard than ever on things that need to be fixed for the second part of the season.
You are very consistent. How do you manage to show such performances, realizing that you have rivals with quadruple jumps and triple axels?
– Yes, thank you. This may seem scary if you look at the situation superficially. But if you think about it, no matter what your rivals do, it does not affect your own tasks at the moment. I believe that it is necessary to focus on my own tasks and goals, and this helps me to skate the way I want.
What do you think of your result? Was it important for you?
– The result was not important for me. I went here to show two good skates and enjoy this experience.
In summer, you trained at the Alexei Mishin’s training camp in France. Why did you decide to go there and what did it give you? Maybe you learned something new?
– Everything just happened by itself. Initially, I went to France to work with my choreographer Benoit Richaud, and at the same time there were training camp. It was, rather, a situation where I could kill two birds with one stone.
Of course, I am very grateful to Alexei Mishin for allowing me to join his training camp. I learned a lot, it was an amazing experience. I was very glad to have the opportunity to train with some other athletes. And of course, Courchevel is very beautiful. In general, this time was very different from what I was used to, and I learned a lot.
What was the difference?
– As for skating, I trained with a lot of high-level athletes. There are few such athletes at my home rink. And I didn’t have to drive to trainings, I could walk to the rink, it was great. At home, a trip to the rink takes a long time. I think the general atmosphere of the rink and the fact that I was surrounded by the best athletes – all together created a unique environment for training.
Unfortunately, Liza Tuktamysheva was not at the training camp; she was doing shows. But there were Sofia Samodurova and some other athletes.
Talked with Sofia?
– I would say that I talked with Sofia most of all. I don’t know how well other athletes speak English, but Sofia speaks excellent.
Mishin is a very charismatic coach. In Russia, he is known for his jokes. Perhaps you could recall something like that?
– Right! When the skater fails the jump, Mishin calls it popcorn (“to pop a jump”). He says: “See? Here we have popcorn!” (Laughs). In my opinion, this is very funny. Most coaches get very angry when someone fails a jump because it grows into a bad habit. And he just says: “No! This is popcorn!”
What do you think about learning triple axel?
– Oh, I absolutely want to learn it. I worked on it before a fracture of the foot. I had to suspend work to allow the leg to heal. Now the triple axel is again in my plans for the future. I hope to jump it by the next season.
Would you like to attend training camps of other Russian coaches, for example, Eteri Tutberidze, like Shoma Uno?
– It is hard to say. I think every experience would be very individual and informative, I could learn a lot. And yet I believe that I train best at home. I’m generally a homebody, I like to be at home. I believe that this would be an excellent experience, but for me personally, training at the home rink would probably be preferable to constant traveling and participation in various training camps.
Do you know Russian choreographer and former skater Ilia Averbukh?
He commented the competitions and sometimes called you “brandy.” It has already become a meme in Russia. What do you think about it?
– Oh! Really? I didn’t hear that (laughs). Throughout my life I have been often called “brandy.” This is a common mistake. In childhood, this made me very angry, but now I just think: well, what can you do?
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