SOCHI, February 12. /ITAR-TASS/. All the athletes on the Russian figure staking team entered the competitions at the 22nd Winter Olympic Games in Sochi at the peak of their athletic form, believes Artur Dmitriyev, a two-times Olympic champions in pairs skating.
“Our figure skaters covered a distance of four years to approach these Games and all of them are at the peak of their athletic form now,” said Dmitriyev, who won gold medals at the Winter Olympic Games in 1992 in Albertville and in 1998 in Nagano.
“Our athletes demonstrated the perfect condition in the command tournament with they performed marvelously,” he said.
“I mean Evgeni Plushenko, who aroused many doubts among observers until the very last moment, and Julia Lipnitskaya, who was expected to produce good skating but whom few people believed to be as perfect as she eventually was,” Dmitriyev said.
“Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov lived up to the expectations in pairs and also demonstrated brilliance, and if you take ice dance, the third place we got was the optimal result because the Canadians and Americans are invincible so far,” he said.
Dmitriyev believes that many competitors gave up the hopes in advance when they saw the Russians’ performance in the team tournament. “No one expected a show of this kind and no one knew how the new system of competitions would work and when they realized it, we had been out of reach for them already.”
“We didn’t expect this result ourselves — we hoped to do well but we didn’t expect it would be that well,” Dmitriyev said.