Menshov: Olympis is the main motivation The Russian champion 2011 Menshov had a rather unseccessful last season, became 7th in the nationals, didn't make it to the team, which caused many to doubt he has any future. Many, but not himself - the 29y.o. is full of will to prove he is not yet done and is getting ready to the new season in Latvia. Andrey Simonenko interviewed Menshov for R-Sport AS: Guess a usual question for the off season: how is the mood? What are you working on and how does it go? KM: The mood is fine. Glad the weather is finally nice. It's not my first time in Latvia and I like it here. The work progresses. The new LP is almost ready. We have some small details to finish. All and all I like the new programme. I'm in a good shape, can do all the elements I did at the end of the last season. Usually it takes me a while to get back into the shape, but this year it's fine. AS: Any injuries? KM: A slight pain in the leg, but nothing major. AS: There are several changes in the rules for the next season. For instance the choreographed steps. Did you manage to figure what is it? KM: Not completely, we had just completed that step seq and sent the video to St. Petersburg so the specialists can watch it and give their remarks on whether we followed the rules or missed something. AS: But in general you understand what the change is and why? KM: The change was made so there would be more freedom and it'll look better. Most important that the steps would suit the music. The spins became harder as well, we are working on it now. AS: What about the jumps? KM: We are making them harder as well - I'll be performing two quads and two 3A in my LP. I used to include just one 3A. I'll be performing twice the same quad - 4T in a seq and a solo 4T. The jumps are good, I don't need to change anything AS: Your last season was far from good. Did you gain anything positive from it or was it just one long black strip? KM: The end of the season was ok-ish. The last two competitions were good: the Russia Cup final and Gardena Trophy in Italy. The rest... Well, the SP in NHK Trophy was desent. Otherwise I can't really recall anything possible about last season. AS: The situation with the team compatition in Japan was weird: you were Russia n.3 in the international standings : after Gachinski and Pluschenko, yet Bush and Kovtun were selected to participate, and, well.. didn't quite impress there. KM: Of course it was paiful not being included in the team. Especially at the beginning - it should had been my competition. But.. this is what the RFSF decided. What could I do. Sure, it was my fault as well - had I skated cleanly that season no one would had doubted me. I would be chosen. AS: I know you considered retiring during the last season. What made you change your mind? KM: After the Russian nationals in Saransk the coach (Rukavitsin) and I decided I'll take some time off and think. If I still feel I want to skate - I will. I took 2-3 weeks off and then wanted to go back skating. I just wanted to prove I can win something except for the Russian nationals, that I can do more. AS: What is the main motivation? KM: The Olympics. I want to participate them. And decently. This is my main goal. AS: You are considered an inconsisten skater. How are you working on that? There is a technique: recalling the competitions where you did well and the feeling you had back then. KM: You're right: this is exactly how I work now. I try to recall what I felt like when I skated well - when I went to the ice and it felt great. AS: Define great. KM: When you feel a bit relaxed and skate just for the fun. Then everything works out. That is exactly how I felt in the last competition in Italy. I skated both of my programmes completely clean. That's what I'll keep in mind. AS: Do you recall your LP in Europeans 2011? You had a great skate. KM: Frankly, not in so many details. I don't remember exactly how did I set myself to it. I recall the later competitions better. AS: During the career the athlete becomes more experienced and changes. How did you change? KM: After my failure in the Russian nationals I thought a lot. It's a bit hard to explain, but in short - I became more relaxed. AS: The near future plans is the training in Sweden? KM: Yes, we'll continue to Sweden from Latvia. We'll spend 2 weeks training there and then participate the test skates in Moscow. I will compete once or twice before the GP, but don't know yet in which competitions. It's being discussed now.