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  1. #81
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    Page 54 (continued):

    Alexander has long shown that he possesses enormous potential. In training, he can achieve world-class level, but often fell apart in competitions. After the European Championships, he and his father worked on the mental aspects while Alexander gained more experience from major competitions. This year, he has done considerably better than his Swedish competitors at international events.


    Page 55 (http://i52.tinypic.com/16jfp53.jpg):

    Alexander and his ten-year-old brother Nikolai are gliding to the opera “Prince Igor.” They are carving perfect eights while skating backwards on the ice. On each side of the CD player, their parents are leaning over the boards. Standing beside them is the grandmother, who is visiting from St Petersburg. Although the Majorov family had to adapt to the Luleå hockey club’s practice schedule, the training facilities here are unique. Nowhere else in Sweden can you find four indoor rinks with good ice that are adjacent to each other. Moreover, there are two other ice rinks within twenty kilometers.

    The practice session is an exercise in discipline. Alexander Majorov moves easily and with precision in a tight, shiny sweater that highlights his muscular upper body. When he falls on a triple Axel, Alexander senior shakes his head and calls for his son. The father gives him some firm instructions while tapping the floor with his foot so that it echoes in the empty arena.

    Alexander gains some speed again, jumps, does three turns* in the air, and lands softly.

    “Now it was OK! Now it was OK!” his father says with his arms across his chest. “But do it once again with softer knees.”




    * I'm a little annoyed that the author doesn't seem to know that a triple Axel is actually 3.5 revolutions in the air. Non-figure skating fans who read this article won't realize that it's the most difficult triple jump (and thus the reason why Sasha had struggled with it).
    Last edited by siberia82; 03-16-2011 at 04:36 PM.

  2. #82
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    Page 56 (http://i51.tinypic.com/1io0v8.jpg):

    Afterwards, his mother carefully goes through the choreography of his free program with him.

    - You must be more relaxed. It’s supposed to be theatre, but it needs to look natural. When you do the move where you scratch like a cat, you have to do it properly: “Grrrrrr”. It’s very important.

    She starts the music over and over again and lets him work through the first part of the program, where he dances and flirts with the judges by stroking his upper body with his hands.

    - That was OK, but don’t forget to use your eyes. You must look the judges in the eyes, you shouldn’t appear apologetic. You can be shy at school, but the ice has its own rules. Go again!

    When Alexander steps off the ice, I ask him about his relationship with his two main competitors at the Swedish Championships.

    - It’s thanks to Kristoffer and Adrian that I have improved so much. I have been training to beat them. It has made me better. But I don’t know them. They aren’t approachable. Adrian doesn’t want to talk to Kristoffer, and Kristoffer doesn’t want to talk to me. Before, I used to hang out with Adrian at training camps. We used to tape the others to their beds as they slept, reset their alarm clocks, or spray shaving cream on their hands and tickle their faces. He was like me, a bit mischievous and not like the others, dressed in hip hop style. But when we became competitors, he stopped talking to me. It’s a shame.

    Soon the entire family is gathered in the locker room. Grandma is joking with Nikolai and Alexander pulls a heavy fleece sweater over the body-hugging red knitwear.

    - My current world ranking is probably about 25th, but if I earn a really good result, I’d be able to show that I belong higher up. My first goal is to win the Swedish Championships.




    I think it's unfortunate that Adrian cut off contact with Sasha once he realized that the youngster could challenge him. Maybe he wouldn't be as depressed if he had a skating buddy who understood him (sort of like Filip's friendship with Koffe).

  3. #83
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    Photo, page 56 (http://i51.tinypic.com/1io0v8.jpg):

    SHIELDED. After his own performance in the finals, Adrian sits in the kiss and cry area where he follows Kristoffer's decisive skate on the screen.



    Page 56 (continued):

    The three national gold medal candidates have competed against each other throughout the season, but when they arrive at the Malmö ice stadium just over an hour before the short program, it is the first time that all three are at the same place. They handle this situation by staying as far from each other as possible.



    Page 57 (http://i51.tinypic.com/1io0v8.jpg):

    Adrian Schultheiss is reclined on a seat in the stands while his gaze seems lost in space. His green hat is pulled down over his eyebrows, and his cheeks are covered by the fur on his black down jacket. In a corridor at the other end of the arena, Kristoffer Berntsson’s newly highlighted bangs sway across his forehead as he jogs back and forth with Iphone earphones in his ears. Further away, Alexander Majorov has distanced himself from his parents, who have his skates in a rolling luggage bag. Like other coaches, they always keep their skaters’ equipment under supervision so that no one can sabotage anything.

    Kristoffer, Adrian and Alexander don’t even look at each other during the six-minute warm-up on the ice. After the two other skaters in the final group – who have virtually no chance of medalling – have skated, Adrian glides onto the ice again and assumes his start position near the blue line with his hands across his face. The ring in his lower lip and the sequins on his tight costume are glittering under the spotlight. He dances backwards, light on his feet, and nails a few difficult combinations*, but has a shaky landing on the triple Axel.

    When Kristoffer Berntsson comes out on to the ice dressed as a pantomime artist, he hears the speaker announce Adrian’s score: 69.67. He thinks he should be able to beat that if he does not make any mistakes.




    * Someone needs to tell Mr. Almqvist that there is only one jump combination in the short program.
    Last edited by siberia82; 03-19-2011 at 04:11 AM.

  4. #84
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    Page 51 (continued):

    Kristoffer starts with a clean triple Axel. He doesn’t have the same ease as Adrian when he jumps. There is a thud on the ice when he lands, but he then performs a few practised jump combinations and gets 71.95 points.

    From the kiss and cry – the area where the skaters sit while waiting for their scores – Kristoffer watches how a nervous Alexander Majorov begins with a challenging dance, but misses a triple Axel and a combination. After the short program, Majorov is third with 57.71 points.

    Two days later, the competitors gather again at the Malmö ice stadium. Although they are staying at the same hotel, they have managed to avoid each other: they eat breakfast at different times and spend their practice-free hours in their rooms.

    As Alexander Majorov walks on the ice in a homemade brown shirt with rivets and leather straps, Kristoffer is still jogging around in the corridor outside the changing room and listening to music. He doesn’t see that Alexander is shivering when he takes his first steps on the ice, or that he stops by the boards and takes his father’s hand to get some final instructions. When Kristoffer pulls the earphones out of his ears, he can hear Alexander receiving 129.13 points and realizes that he must have skated well, but the total will not be enough because he faltered in the short program.

    While Adrian Schultheiss is standing by the boards, stomping his feet like an eager race horse, Kristoffer Berntsson is lacing up his skate boots in the changing room. He therefore doesn’t see that Adrian’s hair has been parted and fixed with hair spray in order to create a hairstyle that goes with the puffy-sleeved Romeo shirt. He doesn’t need to look to know that Adrian has a planned quad toe loop as his first jump in the program. If he nails it, the final result will be more or less decided.

  5. #85

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    As a journalist I am slightly angry about this style of writing: yellow press pretending to be insightful. I would guess that all three guys regret about opening up to him.

  6. #86
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    Quote Originally Posted by sus2850 View Post
    As a journalist I am slightly angry about this style of writing: yellow press pretending to be insightful. I would guess that all three guys regret about opening up to him.
    Filter isn't yellow press though. It's a magazine about just about anything (they cite Vanity Fair and New journalism as influences). Erik Almqvist knows nothing about figure skating though, and I wish they'd sent it by someone who does know something before publishing it, even if it's not a sports magazine by any stretch of the imagination.

  7. #87

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    Quote Originally Posted by Evilynn View Post
    Filter isn't yellow press though. It's a magazine about just about anything (they cite Vanity Fair and New journalism as influences). Erik Almqvist knows nothing about figure skating though, and I wish they'd sent it by someone who does know something before publishing it, even if it's not a sports magazine by any stretch of the imagination.
    Yes, I heard that it is a quality magazine, that is why I find this portrayal of the good, the bad and the poor so disturbing, actually. It is pretending to be respectable while manipulating. The same goes for the German weekly "Spiegel", which has a good reputation. But if you read their account of what happened in Fukushima you wanna puke: very sensationalist. But that if very much off topic, sorry.
    And I guess it is hard to sell figure skating to a general audience, I have been ridiculed a lot for writing about it in our sports section...

  8. #88

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    sus 2850 you couldn't have said it better!

    and I would bet too that the guys regret opening up for him.

  9. #89
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    Page 57 (continued):

    On the ice, Adrian opens his program with some spins. After 24 seconds, he speeds up, skates towards the boards and turns around. He takes two steps backwards and glides out on his right foot with his arms stretched out. After a turn, he bends his knees, does a final push and jumps up. One revolution. Two. Three. Four. A murmur is heard from the audience. But when Adrian’s right skate hits the ice, he is leaning too much forwards. He falls and slides on his behind towards a City Gross advertisement on the boards before he gets up and lands five triple jumps.

    When Kristoffer comes out of the changing room corridors and faces the spotlight in pinstriped pants and a matching vest, Adrian has just sat down in a chair in the kiss and cry area with his coaches.

    “I missed it,” he groans.

    “Your weren’t bad, Adrian,” says coach Maria. “It was a good skate. The Lutz at the end was completely clean. And you looked happy. Calm.”

    The speaker announces that the judges agree with her: Adrian gets 129.20 points. This means that Kristoffer doesn’t have room for any big mistakes.

    He stands on the center circle with his hands shaped like guns against his cheek to resemble one of the gangsters in Michael Jackson’s “Smooth Criminal” video.


    Page 58 (http://i55.tinypic.com/2zs7148.jpg):

    Kristoffer begins to dance at the first pulsating beats of the song. He feels heavy in his movements, and after his second jump, a triple toe loop, he puts his hands on the ice and is forced to speed up to be on time for his next jump, a triple Axel. This one also goes badly. He now thinks it’s all over, but soon pushes the thought away. He suddenly nails three triples in a row, and when the musical medley changes to “Dirty Diana,” the whole audience is clapping. After a few hip movements and a successful sit spin, he skates up to the head judge, grabs her table, looks her in the eyes and tosses his bangs. She tries to look unbribably severe, but the corners of her mouth betray her. Kristoffer then ends his program with two perfect double Axels.

  10. #90
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    Quote Originally Posted by siberia82 View Post
    Page 51 (continued):

    Kristoffer starts with a clean triple Axel. He doesn’t have the same ease as Adrian when he jumps. There is a thud on the ice when he lands, but he then performs a few practised jump combinations and gets 71.95 points.
    In case I confused somebody, I meant to say Page 57 and not Page 51. Sorry for the typo!

  11. #91
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    I apologize for the delay, but I was out of town and didn't have time to work on the translation during my trip.



    Page 58 (continued):

    When he and Andrea are comfortably seated on each side of the little table with mandarins in the kiss and cry, the announcer says:

    - The score for the last skater is ready. Kristoffer Berntsson from Landvetter figure skating club gets 132 points, giving him a total score of 205.31.

    Kristoffer smiles and clenches his fists on his lap. The audience applauds and whistles. A bunch of screaming girls in pastel-coloured clothes is hanging over the rails with autograph books in their hands. A television team rushes up to him with a spotlight to interview the winner.

    “It would be fantastic to go to Tokyo again and experience something like I did during the World Championships in 2007,” says a panting Kristoffer into the microphone.

    Behind the wall of the kiss and cry, Adrian Schultheiss is sitting on the floor with a can of Coca-Cola. Alexander Majorov comes up to him and shakes his head.

    - It’s impossible in Sweden. You should have won. Kristoffer didn’t have a clean skate. He didn’t do a tripe-triple combination.

    I ask Adrian if he agrees.

    - I wasn’t flawless today, and then I don’t care what score Kristoffer got. Within three weeks I’ve changed coaches, changed skates and been ill. I know I can beat him, but I’d rather do that when I’ve skated well myself. While watching him perform, I was thinking that he must shape up, he made a lot of small mistakes.

    Adrian drinks a sip of Coke.

    - Before, I used to skate rather badly and felt that it wasn’t fun any more. I had two goals when I came here: to win and to have fun again. I actually accomplished the latter today.




    For those of you who don't have a copy of the magazine, I just wanted to inform you that there is only one section left to be translated. We're almost at the finish line!

  12. #92
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    Page 58 (continued):

    Kristoffer doesn’t hear this from the other side of the wall. He smiles broadly in his chair and is breathing heavily.

    - I’m tired. I feel sick.

    There's an empty gaze in his eyes as he puts his head between his legs. Having partly recovered after a minute or so, he says:

    - Damn, this feels good! Now the trophy is going home to where it belongs. I honestly thought that last year was the last time.

    The skaters are then called to the ice to receive their medals and listen to the national anthem. Afterwards, the chairwoman of the Swedish Figure Skating Association, Maria Meyer-Martins, announces that she wants to award a grant to a skater who has shown a great degree of development during the year.

    - The grant goes to Alexander Majorov.

    The 19-year-old, who has just become 7500 kronor richer, seems quite disappointed at still being regarded as “promising” when he skates over to receive his plaque.

    Meyer-Martins goes on to present another award.

    - We would also like to draw attention to those in Swedish figure skating who have performed especially well during the year.

    She reads from her sheet:

    - For his outstanding achievement during the Olympics where he became the first Nordic skater to ever land a quadruple jump, later followed by yet another strong result at the World Championships where he beat his personal record. The prize goes to Alexander Schultheiss.

    Adrian stands immobile on the blue line next to Kristoffer, who is holding the trophy in his arms.

    “Adrian!” he shouts. “My name is Adrian.”



    Photo, page 59 (http://i55.tinypic.com/2zs7148.jpg):

    ANXIETY. When Majorov wasn't selected for the European Championships, he called the national team managers, "f***ing Swedish p*****s idiots n*****s" on Facebook. "F*** everyone!" After Aftonbladet picked up the story, the 19-year-old sent a text message to Filter reporter Erik Almqvist: "I feel so bad now because I really didn’t mean any of it."




    And that's everything, folks!
    Last edited by siberia82; 03-27-2011 at 05:13 AM.

  13. #93

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    Tack så mycket, Siberia82!
    They could have a sequel now: Majorov winning bronze in the Junior Worlds, Kristoffer ending his career and Adrian hopefully more positive. But not that style of writing, please!

  14. #94

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    Thank you, siberia82!

  15. #95
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    Finnice and TAHbKA, I can't take all the credit since whiteskates did help me a lot with the later sections. She deserves big cheers as well!

    A fan on another FS forum sent me this cute "award" for my dedication to the Swedish skaters this season (it actually looks nicer in real life, but my scanner isn't the greatest): http://i54.tinypic.com/w49hu.jpg The thought behind it is so sweet!


    Quote Originally Posted by Finnice View Post
    They could have a sequel now: Majorov winning bronze in the Junior Worlds, Kristoffer ending his career and Adrian hopefully more positive. But not that style of writing, please!
    I certainly would like a sequel, but I agree that the journalist needs a different approach, plus a little fact-checking wouldn't hurt. Honestly, I can't believe he didn't even use Wikipedia... Filter should hire the photographer again; I lurve Nicke Johansson's photos!

  16. #96

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    Quote Originally Posted by siberia82 View Post

    A fan on another FS forum sent me this cute "award" for my dedication to the Swedish skaters this season (it actually looks nicer in real life, but my scanner isn't the greatest): http://i54.tinypic.com/w49hu.jpg The thought behind it is so sweet!
    Så vacker! And very cool. You totally deserve it, Siberia82!

  17. #97
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    Any news on the Swedish figure skating front?
    I know Kristoffer retired but what's going on with Adrian?
    What are his plans?

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