Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: “Sometimes there is no emotion left to skate the same program”
Interview with Elizaveta Tuktamysheva. About Channel One Cup, qualifying to the Worlds, new program, quads and publicity.
source: eurosport.ru dd. 18th February 2021, by Dmitri Zimin
Let’s start with the Channel One Cup, which took place not so long ago. Did you like the format?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: I would like to say only good words about these competitions. They turned out to be emotional, bright, cool and quite long. I think they will continue in the future, because public’s interest is huge.
Do you agree with Medvedeva, who did not admit the defeat of her team?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: As for the teams, the red team of Alina Zagitova won. Blue got the Audience Award. I don’t think this event should be treated in the context of winners and losers. Most importantly, everyone enjoyed it.
Can we say, that the draw in the draft format wasn’t the fairest option?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: Alina had two first places at the Russian Nationals in her team. I don’t know why it happened. But the teams were still plus or minus equal. Although I would make it in a different format. We are all used to blind draw. I think this moment will be taken into account in the future.
How would you assess your performances?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: I’m not happy with the short program, because I failed the axel. And I am happy with the free: I managed to skate it more or less cleanly. Conclusions have been made, but it could have been better. Now we are preparing for the Russian Cup Final.
Why did you change the short program, is it just because you got tired of it?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: Yes, the program was good, I loved it. But sometimes there is no emotion left to skate the same program. Everything goes hard without pleasure. So we decided to change the music, and I’m glad of that.
How important is getting to the World Championships for you? And how do you assess your chances?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: It would be great to be there. I will try my best. I do not know in what format the competitions will be held, the main thing for me is to skate well at the Russian Cup Final and get there. And the ice is the same everywhere. I think I have a good chance of making it to the World Championships if everything goes well.
You recently you’ve said that it is difficult for you to do the quadruple now, including due to the consequences of the coronavirus. How can you say about your physical condition now?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: I feel better than at the Russian Nationals. I’m recovering, but I still lack a little for the optimal shape. I will try to bring it to the desired state in two weeks. So we are working.
Which medal was more difficult to win: gold at the 2015 World Championships or gold at the 2020 Russian Grand Prix?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: Grand Prix 2020. The whole season turned out to be difficult, I performed three triple axels in short and free programs. And there was one triple axel at the World Championships, only in the short program, the free program was just bright, cheerful, and was really having fun skating it. From a physical point of view, the World Championships was easier. Well, emotionally it was also easier, because I was on the rise then.
How do you feel about the media attention that surrounds you now?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: Media attention came to me on its own after a year when I skated the Toxic program. And I try to maintain it. I understand that a career of a professional athlete helps me to work in this direction. Now you can’t do in sports without publicity. And this is an important thing. Life goes, you need to use all the opportunities while young.
You regularly appear in Demix ads. Tell us about your collaboration.
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: An agent I know wrote to me and made an offer. It’s very comfortable to work with them, great team. We try to combine professional sports with creativity: photo shooting and other activities. It adds positive emotions. I think we work mutually beneficial. It’s cool that they made a commercial, put banners with my photo. I did not expect this to be this big.
Are Beijing Olympics in your plans?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: My goal is to qualify for the Olympic Games and perform there. It is difficult to guess. Of course I have the desire, let’s see how it goes.
What quadruples have you tried besides toe loop and salchow?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: I haven’t tried others. We had a goal to make a toe loop, and we achieved it. I don’t want to spread myself too thin, because these are different jumps and preparation. So haven’t tried it yet. Hopefully I’ll try the lutz on the harness.
Why do speak against raising the age minimum?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: Figure skating does not stand still and develops, which is good. You can’t stop progress.
You skated on the same ice with Evgeni Plushenko. As an athlete, did he give youth any advice?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: I didn’t skate much with Zhenya. I came to the group at a time when he took a break after the Vancouver Olympics. Then he came back, and we crossed a little. However, we rarely met on the ice. Sometimes, when we were skating together, he could point out some details of the program, what could be improved, where to add emotions. That is, he paid attention and sometimes gave advice.
Can you assess the potential of Plushenko as a coach?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: It’s too early to say. Evgenii has been coaching for about a year. It is difficult to draw any conclusions yet. I hope he is doing well.
Purely hypothetically, could you train with Tutberidze?
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: I do not know. It all depends on the situation. I didn’t even think about it. I like my coach and feel comfortable with him. I am glad that I ended up with Alexei Nikolaevich Mishin.
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I love Elizaveta! A real gutsy lady. I wish you the very best in all your endeavors.