Elena Radionova announces her retirement: “I gave it all”

Ka3sha

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Anatoly Samokhvalov’s interview with Elena Radionova for Rsport

- Lena, when you said to yourself, "That's it?"
- After the 2018 test skates, I finally realized that I am retiring. I firstly had these thoughts when I didn't qualify for the Olympics that same year (Radionova placed 10th at the Russian championship - ed.). But I thought that the post-Olympic year was always very unpredictable. I went to Art On Ice shows, was in good shape at the end of the season, choreographed good programs, life got better. But the offseason turned out insanely heavy and absolutely blurred. I told myself: either you're doing it well, or stop doing it at all.
- And what prevented you from "doing it well"?
- Health. A hormonal imbalance that I couldn't cope with. Very few people understood me. I gained weight. A tough diet wouldn't help, I was in a state that it couldn't be controlled, but one could only wait for the way out. The body needed time to normalize its work. I skated and felt it wasn't me, and then I was stopped being let on the ice because of the weight. Psychologically, I was depressed. Elena Germanovna (Buyanova, Elena's coach - ed.) was very worried, she saw that I could get injured at any time. The days went by, and I was still far from acceptable shape, I had to see a doctor, and then I decided: I don't have to ruin my health, I have to think about the future. And in the future, I'm sure of it, I'll achieve more than in my figure skating career.
- What happened next?
- And then I gave myself another chance. In the summer, I tried to get in shape, gathered ally strength, forgetting about all my previous thoughts. I thought: well, one more try. The last one. From under the summer sun, I went to the cold skating rink and tried to "start" my body, but I was still uncomfortable, every day I was stressed, hysterical. It was hell. I went to the Russian Cup event in Yoshkar-Ola, skated a SP there and realized that I couldn't do anything in the long program. I exhausted myself so much that I never regretted it after I quit skating. I'm so tired of all this. I think I squeezed the most out of myself.
- Why didn't you announce your retirement back then?
- There was still a thought in my head for a while: what if? What if I want one more try?... I needed time for the figure skater to weathered out of me, to mature and to become another person with other goals, who could say with a calm soul: this is really the end. Because our people like to announce retirement and then to come back. People swing on their desires like on a real swing, and I wanted to be sure.
And I make this statement primarily for my fans. I am retiring officially and beautifully.
- Wasn't there any desire to come back?
- I feel very good now. Sometimes I see myself on video, and I want to skate, glide, take part in the shows... But I never wanted to compete again. Competitions have always been a huge stress for me, after which I had to recover for a long time. Someone just came forward and forgot about it. I sometimes had to spend a week after the start recovering, my body was ready for a new event, but my head wasn't.
- So, you didn't enjoy competing?
- At all! Figure skating gave me a lot, I was happy in it. I loved the audience, to skate for people, to get people's attention, it fueled me, and I fueled it back, but the very fact of the competition never made me happy. I liked winning medals and titles, but I didn't like the process itself.
- Why?
- I didn't like this concentration on competitions. If I had my way, I would have done it so as to immediately skate both short and free programs, and not arrange these trainings between the skates. I could collect myself and do everything to the maximum. But only once. By the way, it's not like I didn't like competitions. I loved the atmosphere - new countries, people, draws, shows, attention, but this battle on the ice itself was not for me. I adored everything before it. And the battle itself was a stress for me. I stepped on the ice with full concentration. I took my skates off with devastation. I paid for this concentration with my nerve cells.
- Did the coaches beat the wolf out of you? The one that comes out and tramples down competitors.
- I was never told that I should go out and tear someone up. I don't like this wording at all. Why should I tear anyone?
- Then how to win?
- I think you should do your job. Skating is not like boxing where you have to hit the other man.
- And after talking to Plushenko, I realized that skating is like a real boxing on the ice.
- Really? I didn't have that attitude. Even in training. I never needed a sparring partner, although some people need one. It didn't make me angry when someone next to me did something beautiful. When you focus on someone else, you waste your own energy. This helps someone, apparently, but I preferred to concentrate on myself. The coaches knew that I could train badly and look great in competition. This is my psyche, I don't even know how to call it. In general, I was getting ready for the right moment, and the coaches appreciated me for this.
- Don't you think that with a more brutal quality, perhaps like a "killer", you would have taken not just silver, but gold at some point?
- Who do you think is the "killer" in women's single skating?
- Medvedeva. For two years she won everything she could, and then after the injury she was able to gather all her strength for the Olympics.
- Zhenya is really such a fighter.
- Zagitova is not a "killer". She has no killer instinct, but she has a core that does not allow others to crush her.
- I agree, Alina is not a "killer", but we all have different psychology. I tried to use the qualities that are close to me, and I really could show the maximum at important tournaments, but partly I really lacked other qualities, partly I did not have the team that I needed for joint work in order to win.
- You said there was no such team?
- Yes, at certain moments I lacked coherence, when you realize that all together we are going for the result. Sometimes I didn't do what I should have done, but I had to get into these issues. Let's say Elena Germanovna (Buyanova) has a choreographer, a gliding coach, a general physical training coach. And before that, with Inna Germanovna (Goncharenko), we were like pioneers. We didn't even know how everything should be arranged at all. When you are small, you can keep up, but when you grow up and want results, you understand that you need, let's say, some additional exerсise for my hip joint - this was in my particular case. Sometimes I myself organized a certain team, with which we tried to go for the result. But we didn’t manage to unite to the end, because Inna Germanovna and me had this first experience of working towards big results. We just didn't know what to do. And we made mistakes.
- And to get this team, you had to go to Buyanova?
- Not at all. You can try to create your own team, but I switched for another reason.
I am grateful to Inna Germanovna (Goncharenko) for what she did for me. If she continued to raise athletes, she would have succeeded, because she had experience with me and she would have drawn right conclusions. Still, when the child is small, you can behave as you see right. If you want, you can shout at him, and he will do something out of fear. And when he grows up, you have to study his psychology. During the puberty, when person's "I" appears, a different approach is needed. If the coach's approach doesn't change, failures, misunderstandings and hysterics occur. At such moments, Tatyana Anatolyevna Tarasova saved me. When she came, it was simply impossible not to work hard. And not because everyone is afraid of her. Nope. She has an unimaginable energy that she is ready to share with everyone. Tarasova inspired me. One word was enough for her to make me forget about all the problems and to rush on the ice, doing any amount of work. My eyes light up when she came in, I wanted to do more, more and more, more, more ...
- Has Goncharenko changed the language of communication with you?
- It's not about the manner of communication. She just had a hard time dealing with me. She created a load plan for me that I could't do. I realized with my head that I was not a child anymore, and if I blindly do everything the coach demands, I would simply ruin my health. For juniors there's one pace, and for adults - another.
- Could you tell her that directly?
- I absolutely trusted her, but I didn’t have enough support during that period of growing up. Inna Germanovna has a conservative approach, she says - you do it. And I dreamed that she would just believe in me. You see, my parents have always believed in me, and I really wanted Inna Germanovna to be the kind of person who would believe in me too. But I didn't feel it. Sometimes she would say: "Go and do it. It should be so." And I understood that I was not ready for this. In response, the coach thought that I was lazy, come up all sorts of fables just not to work. We simply lacked personal conversations. But: if not for Inna Germanovna, I would not have achieved my results.
- Even with another coach?
- The fact of the matter is that she saw me. In childhood. And she spent a lot of energy working with me. But time passed, and I saw a dead end in front of me. I wanted to work with this person that was dear to me, but I understood that I had only one way out - to leave.
- Don't you think that the coach at such moments thinks that others are simply luring their skaters away?
- Sure! And so it was. It was thought. We have a problem with this in Russia. If you go to another coach, you are a traitor. An ungrateful person. And I do not think that with Inna Germanovna we have achieved the maximum. No, we could have achieved more with her, the rift happened because of the level of our relationships, and not because of the coaching level. In general, I am skeptica when a person says: "The coach gave me the maximum, so I left him." I think that nothing needs to be changed if normal work is going on. The best is the enemy of the good.
- But you did not manage to cope with the problem of growing up in Buyanova's group as well.
- It's a pity that the work with Elena Germanovna turned out to be blurry. The work itself was going great, the contact with the coach was that great that we are still together.
- She says that you even became friends.
- So it is, we even discuss life issues, I often ask her for advice. She responded to my request to take me to the group. Although, of course, they said that I was lured away, but this is absolute nonsense. I called her myself and didn't even know if she would pick up the phone. We trained at the same rink, but sometimes she was offended by me. I was a girl with character, I did things that were impolite. Could look at her askance while passing by. I understood that she was an authoritative adult person, and for me she was like that. But I, as a little girl, also knew my worth and sometimes behaved arrogantly. In general, I called her, she answered the phone, I told her: "Elena Germanovna, this is Lena Radionova." She was like, "Oh! Wow!" There was genuine surprise in her voice. I found it difficult then to find the words. "I want you to take me ..." - I remember, I said. "Yes? You surprised me," she replied. By that time, I had not yet said goodbye to Inna Germanovna, because I was not sure if I was needed at all in the new group. I got her consent, after that I skated at the World Team Trophy with Inna Germanovna, with whom I already had a strained relationship. Thanks to Sasha Uspensky (CSKA coach), who supported me in that difficult moment. When we arrived, I went up to Inna Germanovna and told her about the decision to leave. It was hard for me to say it.
- Was it a hard decision?
- Well-considered one. I spent a very long period of time thinking about it. But the hard one, too, perhaps. I am very attached to people and then I believed that, despite all my arguments, I really looked like a traitor. “You can't do this!” - I constantly heard my inner voice. "Well, what about Inna Germanovna? ..", "We've been with her since childhood ...". I was thinking of leaving, but this thought scratched my soul, and for a long time I did not dare to do it.
- How else, then, if the mind says to leave?
- On one side of the scale there was a good relationship, on the other - the result. I chose the latter. Of course, no one will give you a guarantee of the result, but there was hope. And choosing a good relationship would only hasten my career collapse. Still, I realized: if you think about others, you will lose yourself in sports. One smart man told me: every athlete should be selfish. So I played an egoist at that turning point.
- But you never found happiness in sports again.
- The first training camp at Elena Germanovna's was excellent, in training I did loop - oiler - flip, lutz - loop, lutz - toeloop - toeloop combos. This was enough to compete for gold in all tournaments. But at the competitions it was as if I was replaced. Now I myself think what it was and can't find an answer. I always knew how to approach the start, and then I seemed to have forgotten how to do it.
- There was no feeling of powerlessness in front of competitors?
- Not. Truth to be told, others did not distract me. I remember preparing for the Russian championship, one training session on Saturday, and a day off on Sunday. I have a think - if there is a day off, I can lose my form. The day off was canceled, I skated well that day, I come on Monday, and there is a 'bag' under my knee. Without any reasons. Yesterday everything was fine, today I cannot step on my foot normally. I put the skates on, but could not even make a step. And on Wednesday we were going to St. Petersburg on "Sapsan". I'm in panic. I went to the physiotherapists, they couldn't find an answer. Either the lymph node was inflamed, or something else. It is still a mystery to me. Then they stuck some tapes on me, removed the pain. On Tuesday I did a workout somehow, in St. Petersburg I also skated and jumped. I thought everything would be fine, but I’m going out for a short program, try a loop during the warm up. This jump has always been very consistent for me. I go out for the program itself, go to the loop and understand that my skate goes right in my own trail, and there is no pushing out. I'm falling. This loop cost me more or less successful result at those nationals. A knee, a trace, some kind of bad luck. And the next summer... i got goosebumps ... I have already told about it.
- Who was your main rival?
- The main one? It depends on the time. Zhenka, Lizka, Anka, Yulka, Adelinka, Alina ... All of them, depending on the season.
- It seemed to me that the direct fight was only with Medvedeva. Before that, you were young, you won, but did not yet realize this struggle. The battle "Radionova - Medvedeva" could have became a brand, but the brand is "Medvedeva - Zagitova".
- It seems to me that Zhenya and I would not have such a confrontation as she and Alina. They were were preparing for the Olympics in the same group, and this is a base for drama. In general, from the outside it is easier to sat, I skated and skated for myself, today we compete with Zhenya, tomorrow with Anya, and the day after tomorrow with Japanese ladies. We fought very seriously with Miyahara in juniors, and then with Ashley, Gracie, Mao ... (talking about American Ashley Wagner, Gracie Gold and three-time world champion from Japan Mao Asada - ed.)
- As a child, do you quickly get used to the fact that you are the best and the most beautiful one?
- I never considered myself the mist beautiful, and no one imposed this on me. Beauty is a relative concept. It should be inside. Sometimes a handsome man walks along, you start talking to him and realize that he is, in fact, not handsome at all. It is important for me how a person expresses his thoughts, his worldview, life concepts, even his sense of humor. For me, this is the priority, not the appearance.
- Who has the best jokes?
- Had. Denis Ten. Smart, educated, intelligent. When he started speaking, I opened my mouth and caught his every word. He told simple stories with amazing humor. I wanted to listen to him for hours. He was unique. Whatever Denis took on, it began to shine in different colors. What a beautiful soul he had. I have many fond memories of him. It was he who gave me the phone number of Shae-Lynn (Bourne, one of the best choreographers in the world), introduced me to her. Our skaters, as a rule, are used to choreograph programs with our own choreographers, and I was the first one who decided to go overseas. So I started this trend to go to Shae-Lynn Bourne in Russia. Now Liza Tuktamysheva, Zhenya Medvedeva, and Alena Kostornaya are working with her.
I have always had a dream to participate in the Swiss Art On Ice show and Yuna Kim's show, which I consider the most prestigious in the world. Denis invited me to YuNa's shows. I also love Japanese shows, but I participated in them since I was a junior, so I dreamed about these two others. Denis was, one might say, my agent who negotiated all the things. He really helped me a lot, helped to sign normal contracts. When we met, everyone was joking: oh, the agent is in business. Usually, after all, you rely only on yourself, but here was a man who helped me. There are not so many as kind people as Denis was left in the world.
...
And I never considered myself the best one. Even when I won, I didn't feel like a champion....
- Was it interesting to win the junior world championship twice?
- The second one was more interesting. I went to the first one with a lack of understanding what it was. Yulka (Lipnitskaya) was the reigning champion. I thought it would be cool to be in the top three. We became friends with her and with Anya Pogorilaya then. Our atmosphere was not competitive at all. You were talking about a she-wolf, rivalry and all, but we laughed together, went to breakfast together, for lunch, dinner ...
- Zagitova and Medvedeva also looked like a friendly duet at the Olympic Games in Pyeongchang ...
- It's one thing to communicate, and another to be friends. There are no friends in sports, that's for sure. Friendship is a serious concept. There cannot be many friends, one or two at most. These are people you can rely on during difficult times. And not just those who can be there when you feel bad, but sincerely rejoice when you feel good. A fairly large number of people have always supported me. Russian people are merciful, it's true. But when you feel good, not everyone will be happy for you. You see how happy your parents are for you, and then you meet someone with the phrase "Wow, how cool it is!" They start to tell you how gorgeous you are, but you understand that this is not sincere.
- And you smile professionally in return?
- Sure! This is nice too. Fans rejoice from the bottom of their hearts, but sports colleagues - rarely. And who will be happy for a direct competitor? Figure skating is a very cruel sport. And I won the first junior world championship without hesitation. I was not going to win the second title, but to confirm it. And then there was a bunch of unnecessary thoughts like "What if it doesn't work out?" I have always been a maximalist, living according to the principle "all or nothing". It was important for me to win the second time, despite my big toe injury. A common injury for skaters: fractures appear on the finger due to lutz and flip. I missed the Russian Championship because of it and Sasha Proklova, also at that time a student of Inna Germanovna, placed third there. But Tatyana Anatolyevna said that I must go. I couldn't let her down and won the Junior World Championship for the second time in a row. Tarasova sincerely worried about me throughout my career and was always there.
- Didn't you feel that you simple didn't 'get' into the right year for the Olympic Games, that you could win?
- If only, if only ... Of course, I had such thoughts, but I didn't bother myself with those thoughts.
- All the same, after all, initially there was not a huge difference in the level of skills between Zagitova, Medvedeva, Radionova, Pogorilaya. All of you were skating on elite level.
- In 2018 there was a chance.
- But then you already started having problems. And be a little older, in 2014 everything could have turned out quite well for you.
- Complaining about this is like being offended by the rain. And in 2018 there was a chance. But only for the third spot. It didn’t work out, but as they say, it doesn’t sit in me all the time. Every time I honestly approached the competition and showed the maximum.
- At the same time, at the European Championships in Stockholm, you lost some crumbs to Liza Tuktamysheva, leading after the short program.
- It hurt. Then they reassured me: "Come on, nonsense, you are young, and you have everything ahead of you, and Lizka has been skating for a long time already." And in the end, I retired, and Lisa is still fighting.
- A year later, at the European Championship in Bratislava, Medvedeva skated as a tank, and you were sad.
- That event also hurt. As I skated cleanly, and Zhenya won with a fall.
- She even looked like a winner at practices there. We sat with Mishin, and he gave me an example of Medvedeva, who was imperturbable and all her movements trained to the smallest detail, her self-confidence was visible. And you didn't seem to have such an attitude.
- I didn't have the team that could unite everyone and tune for me in the right way.
- But Tarasova is a master of this attitude, and she cared about you.
- But she didn't work with me every day. She came when there was an opportunity.
- If she had been your coach since 2015, what would await you?
- Good question. I never thought about it. It seems to me that it was already difficult for Tatyana Anatolyevna to coach the athlete permanently. She just appeared at the right moment and led to the right path. In general, she is, of course, a phenomenon.
- We have a special relationship to that phenomenon. Many believe that she has favorites that she praises and tries to promote.
- I never noticed her favorites.
- And you weren't one of them?
- She treated me very well, but I didn't see how she worked with others. In my opinion, Tatyana Anatolyevna is ready to help anyone. They will call her, she will immediately come to the rescue.
- I noticed that not everyone treats her with respect, but everyone listens to her advice.
- Only an unwise person will not listen to Tarasova. I don't remember a situation at all when she would have been wrong. She knows everything about figure skating and at the same time keeps up with the times. Previously, everyone skated to the classics, now the age of modern music has come, and Tatyana Anatolyevna is able to quite objectively assess new trends. I had a lot of doubts about Porgy and Bess. The music was offered by Tarasova, she saw me in it, but the image was so new for me that I could not imagine myself in it at all. At first. Then the music began to play, and I realized what Shae-Lynn is capable of. I'll tell you honestly: Tatyana Anatolyevna will not advise bad things. And Gershwin from Shae-Lynn is a complete delight. I still admire that program. In general, I am used to trusting professionals.
- Shae-Lynn Bourne, Morozov, Vlasova, Maslennikova, Chernyshev, Kanaeva, Averbukh, Misha Ge. Who was the best choreographer in your career?
- With Shae-Lynn we created magic. I adore Elena Stanislavovna (Maslennikova), she is a truly bright person. She guided me since childhood, with her we choreographed the amazing "The Fifth Element" and "Zombies" programs. Ilya Averbukh is a director who is absolutely not like anyone else. He has a ritual: he puts on a hood and begins to skate on the ice alone with himself, living the entire program himself, and only then he begins to choreograph a program with the skater. Petya Chernyshev is unique in his skating style, he just has a great variety of new steps. When he offers something, you understand that you will not do it. I looked at his legs and did not understand how he did that. But when you overpower yourself, it turns out very cool. Kolya Morozov shared with me the secrets of showing the edges, his priority is the convenience of the program for the athlete. He believes that if you are uncomfortable somewhere, then in this part of the program you will fail. Morozov is a master of staging integral programs, when each movement harmoniously flows into the next. Nadia Kanaeva and Rafael Arutyunyan have a completely different environment, Nadya taught me easy-looking women's skating. Every time she tried to make me softer and softer, she just sharpened me to soar in the air, and Ashley Wagner flew next to me, and I sometimes swallowed her manner of feminine skating, and that was very beneficial for my skating. Kanaeva knows how to deliver a program with a minimum of energy consumption and is very airy. Symbiosis of strong legs and light torso. Nadia and Shae-Lynn instilled in me a love of the American-Canadian style, which I gladly enriched myself with and which I really did not want to lose when I returned to Russia. Now I have the skills of both the Russian choreographic school and the North American one, and you cannot imagine with what pleasure I share my experience with the kids.
- Do you see yourself as a choreographer in the future?
- Yes, I'm passionate about it. Of course, if someone turns to me to help with jumping, I will respond, because I also understand this. But I live by choreography. It's mine.
- Do you have any extravagant ideas?
- I am so sorry that I was not able to skate the programs of the 2018/19 season, especially the short program to Amy Winehouse 'You Know I'm No Good'. Petya Chernyshev and I were the fir ones to use rap music in figure skating. This is an incredibly cool program. I am very sorry that I was not able to show that program to the public. The free program was completely different, but it is already out of my head.
- If a skater comes to you and asks you to choreograph to Carmen, will you try to dissuade him?
- No, I will try to make a different "Carmen", not the same as everyone else's.
- And how to make it different?
- The most important thing is to show the strengths of the skater. You need to understand what suits him. Some positions suit the athlete, some do not, and this is clearly noticeable during the performance. And choreography is such a science where you can pick up a lot of original things to show the world a completely unfamiliar "Carmen".
- Is it hard to make sure that you are not copying anything and not to be later accused of plagiarism, like Gleichengauz after Zagitova's number to Billie Eilish?
- It is very difficult to be constantly different, because every cool choreographer has his own style, which is expressed in steps, other details on the ice. I know of only one choreographer who manages to stand out - Shae-Lynn Bourne. Bring her two of the same music and she will choreograph two different programs.
- Your favorite TV series is "Rebel".
- It was a long time ago, but this movie really characterized me well.
- At what point did you rebel?
- In adolescence. But without rudeness.
- With curse words?
- I don’t swear in my life, maybe very very rarely. The banal word "ass" is not easy for me. "The Fifth point", "butt" - this is my lexicon. I don't even feel comfortable saying "moron" and "idiot".
- What can make you swear?
- Now - nothing, but before - only figure skating. Hopelessness in training. Girls should not use foul language, only if they are telling anecdotes. Although there are a lot of swearing boys in our sport. I don't like those who speak like a shoemaker.
- How did you fight with people then?
- There were some conflicts on the ice. I don’t remember the fights, sometimes couldn't share the music, someone could bother you on purpose in training, when you skate the program, for example, and the person starts to skate around the place where you have to do the spin. But I still managed without curse words. In general, these fights on the ice, this competition in the group, preparation for some world championships - all of it is such a nonsense.
- I noticed long ago that you are very careful with the person you talk to.
- I cannot call myself a closed person, I just prefer to think before speaking. In figure skating, there are inadequate fans who, whatever you say, will still paraphrase.
- You have always loved to show yourself. This loose hair and all. Better yet, if they fluttered on the Cote d'Azur in Nice. At the same time, you have never striven for the standard with pouty lips, motivational rubbish on Instagram and do not pretend to be a life coach.
- It's really funny to watch what is happening on social media. In adolescence I also had enough foolishness in my head, I wanted to remake myself all the way and even to remove the ribs. I wanted a thin waist. But I was told: "Be patient, you are still very young." I grew up and gradually realized that everything was not so bad with me. Now I go to a beautician, but there were no injections or operations. Everything depends on the environment. If a friend tells you that you need to pump something up, then what kind of a friend is it? And the guys, in my opinion, are already full of ladies with silicone breasts, butts and pouty lips. Now it is very difficult to find a girl without plastic lips, injected cheekbones. Years will pass, and you do not even know what consequences await you. There are many beautiful girls, but very few interesting ones. The main thing is charisma, and these dolls with duck lips are all the same. There is nothing to talk about with them. The time is coming for the strong, smart and natural. Correct nutrition and gymnastics are in trend. If you have an athletic figure, then your facial features will become more noble. When I gain some weight, I don't like my face either. But I'm not against plastic surgery as such. If you don't like your nose, go and do it. But if you love yourself, you won't do it. Today self-made girls are appreciated.
- Who do you admire?
- Natalya Vodyanova. A woman without a single plastic surgery, who has achieved a lot with her work. She devotes a lot of time to charity work, she has the right family values, many children. The girl has made a career, and created a family, and is engaged in charity. I am sure she is very smart and interesting.

Then they started talking about Elena's private life and her boyfriend - Konstantin Kuchaev, who is a soccer player in one of the best Russian teams, CSKA; about stereotypical soccer wives behavior and blah blah blah
 

seruleane

Member
Messages
14
I love Radionova. She was the figure skater who got me interested in FS again (after the Sochi Olympics). I loved her charisma and musicality while performing. She reminded me of Oksana Baiul. This is a great interview, and I am so happy to see that she has grown into an intelligent, wise, and well-spoken young lady. I love the parts about Denis Ten as well. I am glad he was able to open some doors for her. I think she will be very successful as a coach or choreographer and envy the kids who will get to work with her. I wish her the best in her future endeavors.
 

Coco

Rotating while Russian!
Messages
15,592
When she was a junior, I remember being so excited about her (hope I didn't jinx her). She was one of the first skaters who really transcended the new IJS styled programs and made me feel I was watching a 6.0 program. I saw her at 2013 Skate America in the old Joe Louis Arena during her first season as a GP senior, when she was too young for Sochi. The relationship between her and Goncharenko there (in the stands, watching other disciplines) was very much like mother and daughter.

I'm sorry for her struggles and disappointments, but I wish her all the best.
 
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Hanna

Skating junkie
Messages
27,794
Lovely and thoughtful interview! :) Elena was always a favorite of mine since the beginning - she was so joyous and always looked like she loved every second on the ice. To be honest not many Russian ladies that came after her have been the performers that Elena was.

Programs I won't forget!

The zombie exhibition
And finally I love you (2013 junior FS)
Jotem :D
Titanic

I wish her the best in everything she decides to in life! :)
 

Hedwig

WoolSilk Fanatic
Messages
18,474
thank you for the translation! I was such a big fan of Radionova especially in her Junior days and very convinced that she would be a big star once.
She is - but in a different way than I thought. A really well spoken and interesting young lady.
 

shine

Well-Known Member
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4,843
When she was a junior, I remember being so excited about her (hope I didn't jinx her). She was one of the first skaters who really transcended the new IJS styled programs and made me feel I was watching a 6.0 program. I saw her at 2013 Skate America in the old Joe Louis Arena during her first season as a GP senior, when she was too young for Sochi. The relationship between her and Goncharenko there (in the stands, watching other disciplines) was very much like mother and daughter.

I'm sorry for her struggles and disappointments, but I wish her all the best.
Her Frida FS will always be one of my favorites :wuzrobbed
 

Tinami Amori

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Last time i really enjoyed Radionova's performance/skate was in 2013, with this number.

After that she skated and acted "too girly and flirty" on the ice in competition, and i stopped seeing an "athlete", which is important to me (and one of the reasons why i prefer Bradie T. to an US senior lady skaters).

In any case, good luck to Radionova in her new path.
 

Lis

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Thank you for the translation.
Elena is my favorite Russian skater by far. When she skated, she always looked like the ice was the best place on earth to be on.
I still think she should have won in Bratilasva, that was unfair. I hope she will stay in figure skating as a coach choreographer what ever...
 

Kelvster

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no matter what happens, she will always be a world medallist! sth to be extremely proud of....
I just loved how she gave it her all .... and her cheesy music and stuff ... very refreshing~
 

hanca

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Radionova was so much better with Goncharenko, until Tarasova twisted and twisted her arms and made (made!) her transfer to Buyanova (Tarasova's best friend).
That’s interesting. Radionova says in her interview that she changed because she felt that Goncharenko was still treating her the same way as she did when she was a child, even though she grew up and needed a different approach. She said that the relationship with Goncharenko was not as good any more. So it doesn’t seem (at least according to Radionova) that Tarasova twisted anyone’s arm. But you clearly know better than the skater herself.
 

Tinami Amori

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That’s interesting. Radionova says in her interview that she changed because she felt that Goncharenko was still treating her the same way as she did when she was a child, even though she grew up and needed a different approach. She said that the relationship with Goncharenko was not as good any more. So it doesn’t seem (at least according to Radionova) that Tarasova twisted anyone’s arm. But you clearly know better than the skater herself.
Teachers will always treat their pupils as "students", they are to guide and students are to listen, to learn, to follow. Also, what else could Radionova say.... all that switch always need a good legend "why they did it". But it still does not change the fact that Tarasova insisted and arranged the transfer to Buyanova. Not only that, Tarasova was hinting to Radionova that if she does not transfer, then for "various reasons" her career of a top skater is over.
 

hanca

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Teachers will always treat their pupils as "students", they are to guide and students are to listen, to learn, to follow. Also, what else could Radionova say.... all that switch always need a good legend "why they did it". But it still does not change the fact that Tarasova insisted and arranged the transfer to Buyanova. Not only that, Tarasova was hinting to Radionova that if she does not transfer, then for "various reasons" her career of a top skater is over.
So you claim that Radionova lied about why she changed coaches? Why should she need to lie? She is retired, she can say whatever she wants to and neither Tarasova nor Buyanova could do anything about it. Quite honestly, what you are saying sounds a bit far fetched.
Tarasova may have done the phone calls for her, but that doesn’t mean that Tarasova initiated the switch.
 

Tinami Amori

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So you claim that Radionova lied about why she changed coaches? Why should she need to lie? She is retired, she can say whatever she wants to and neither Tarasova nor Buyanova could do anything about it. Quite honestly, what you are saying sounds a bit far fetched.
Tarasova may have done the phone calls for her, but that doesn’t mean that Tarasova initiated the switch.
I read a lot of comments from insiders and i believe them. Tarasova does this often. She likes a skater and starts meddling in their skating, including music, costumes, execution and coach changes. She also initiated Kovtun moving to Boyanova. She initiated Medvedeva's switch to Orser, etc. But.... Lets just each one of us keep their opinion on this situation.
 

Scott512

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Elena was one of the most likable skaters in recent memory. I'm sorry she and her shining personality did not become a big figure skating star. But she was very good and a good example for her younger compatriots. I hope Elena stays involved in the sport she loves o much. :)
 

Scott512

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Elena skates a farewell performance at Russian Cup #2 in Moscow last weekend

She was also awarded a badge of honor for “Outstanding Achievements in Figure Skating” by Aleksandr Gorshkov
Good God Elena is in phenomenol shape! What is she doing retiring? She would be the #1 lady for Canada if she wanted to be.

Thanks for the video. Good luck to Elena in retirement. I hope she stays involved with her sport
 

hanca

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Good God Elena is in phenomenol shape! What is she doing retiring? She would be the #1 lady for Canada if she wanted to be.

Thanks for the video. Good luck to Elena in retirement. I hope she stays involved with her sport
Phenomenal shape? She skated the whole program without any jumps and her spins were very slow. She will be very popular in shows, but she has no chance to be competitive, because the chances are she would struggle to even qualify for the nationals. Everyone in Russia has the jumps and the fact that she didn’t do any at all, that suggests she didn’t even want to risk 2A or 3T. Don’t get me wrong, it was really nice to see her. But her skating just isn’t enough for senior lady in Russia.
 

Weve3

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I remember thinking Elena could win it all. She was winning everything, initially, but then she started growing to basketball/volleyball player height, etc., and that was that. What I thought was terrific was her optimistic outlook. Elena was a ray of sunshine. I will miss her, but do agree that she 'gave it her all.' I hope her future is as bright and promising as her personality and attitude are.
 

Scott512

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Phenomenal shape? She skated the whole program without any jumps and her spins were very slow. She will be very popular in shows, but she has no chance to be competitive, because the chances are she would struggle to even qualify for the nationals. Everyone in Russia has the jumps and the fact that she didn’t do any at all, that suggests she didn’t even want to risk 2A or 3T. Don’t get me wrong, it was really nice to see her. But her skating just isn’t enough for senior lady in Russia.
I mean she is more trim than she used to be. Its like Elena grew a couple more inches. ;) She looks amazing. I wish she was still competitive but understand why she is not.
 

hanca

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I mean she is more trim than she used to be. Its like Elena grew a couple more inches. ;) She looks amazing. I wish she was still competitive but understand why she is not.
She looks amazing. She also has a good personality, based on her past interviews. Sadly that is not enough toremain a competitive elite skater, especially not in a country with such a high level of competition. But I used to really enjoy her skating and I am glad that she got sone acknowledgement for her achievements.
 

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