Legendary coach Tatiana Tarasova saw Kamila Valieva finish fourth in a painful end to the Russian figure skater’s Olympic campaign
Russian figure skating sensation Kamila Valieva’s fate at the Winter Olympics has been decided ahead of her emotional final performance at the Beijing Games, legendary coach Tatiana Tarasova says after watching the 15-year-old complete a campaign ruined by his anti-doping case with fourth place in the individual competition.
Pre-Games favorite Valieva led the field in the women’s singles free skate on Thursday, falling from the podium places with an unusually error-laden performance that meant the medal ceremony, which the International Olympic Committee, would not take place. if she finished in the top three, went ahead.
Tarasova, a member of the World Figure Skating Hall of Fame who won the last of her eight gold medals while coaching Russian athletes in Alexei Yagudin’s triumph at the 2002 Games, admitted he It would have been impossible to comfort the visibly crestfallen Valieva afterwards.
Skating last, Valieva couldn’t eclipse a superb performance from her compatriots as world number one Anna Shcherbakova won gold and Alexandra Trusova – who became the first woman to land four quads at the Olympics – earned the money.
“How can you comfort Camila? » Tarasova asked, suggesting the star had been hit hard by a week of frenzied media coverage following the announcement of a drug test result from the Russian Championships on December 25. “She was killed, killed, killed and killed. We saw it today.”
Valieva held her head in her hands and cried after a showing she clearly wasn’t happy with.
The pressure on the prodigy would have been enormous even without her ordeal since news broke that she had tested positive for a heart medication that is on the World Anti-Doping Agency’s banned list.
The Court of Arbitration for Sport upheld the Russian Anti-Doping Agency’s decision to lift Valieva’s provisional suspension following a lengthy hearing that Valieva admitted was exhausting.
Despite being considered a ‘protected person’ by the AMA as a minor and unable to mount a proper legal defense against the non-performance enhancing substance, Valieva has been portrayed by some media as a symbol of what they perceive to be a doping crisis involving Russia.
The International Olympic Committee had wanted Valieva suspended but called for an end to speculation in a case that is only expected to be fully explored once the Games are over.
European champion Valieva also entered the event knowing that the gold medals won by the Russian Olympic Committee in the team event – helped by her star performance – could be taken away during the saga.
Tarasova had sympathy for Trusova, who was also clearly upset after the event ended.
“How can Trusova survive this?” Tarasova asked Championat, her correspondent being unable to answer this question while telling her that they were 23 years old.
” Twenty three years ? If at 23 you don’t know how to survive it, then how can she know at 17? I just have to cry.