Elizaveta Tuktamisheva takes gold medal at Youth Olympics
Tuesday night became Elizaveta Tuktamisheva’s time to shine as she won the gold medal at the first winter Youth Olympic Games.
Elizaveta performed a stunning routine in the ladies’ free skating to take her total of 173.10 points and ensure she walked away with the first place at the Innsbruck 2012.
And, as has not often been the case so far in the tale of these two Russian figure skating talents, it was Adelina Sotnikova who was forced to settle for silver medal, having scored 159.08 points. China’s Zijun LI, with 157.70, claimed the bronze.
For Liza, getting the better of her rival, and on such a stage, was a moment to truly savor.
“It is amazing,” Elizaveta said. “It is a great feeling.”
Her skate was not perfect, but her rival’s errors were worse.
“I did not do my best performance,” Tuktamisheva said. “I had some mistakes and I could have done better, but I am still proud that I won gold.”
Elizaveta, who scored 173.10, fell after a jump in the beginning of her free skating. “It was like I was flying in the air, and then oops, I fell on the ice.”
The gold medalist admitted skating at Innsbruck 2012 as one of the top-rated athletes was challenging.
“It was difficult to come here being considered one of the leaders, this made me feel pressured,” Youth Olympic champion said. “You need to perform well having this status. I am glad somehow I could cope with my nerves.”
Silver medalist Adelina Sotnikova admitted she had not reached her usual high standards, and was at a loss to explain it.
“I didn’t understand what happened, but something made me nervous,” she said. “I was trying to skate and enjoy, but eventually I did terrible. It was something mental.”
Having missed a number of jumps, Sotnikova was extremely honest in her assessment of how she had skated.
“After my first jump was not successful, I tried to forget about it and to continue my performance,” Adelina said. “Then, when I tried another jump and I could not do it, I tried to continue and go.”
“I skated so bad I had never seen before in my life.”
“I did not skate well enough to be on the podium,” she said. “I am disappointed, my short program was clean, this bad skating really upset me.”
In sharp contrast, Chinese skater Zijun LI, who claimed the bronze medal with her season’s best total, was delighted.
“I am very happy for this medal, I skated very well today,” she said. “I performed my level. Now I hope to continue improving, competition after competition.”
Youth Olympic Games 2012, Innsbruck – Figure Skating podium
1. Elizaveta Tuktamisheva (Russia) 173.10
2. Adelina Sotnikova (Russia) 159.08
3. Zijun Li (China) 157.70
1. Han Yan (China) 192.45
2. Shoma Uno (Japan) 167.15
3. Feodosi Efremenkov (Russia) 163.46
1. Xiaoyu Yu / Yang Jin (China) 153.82
2. Lina Fedorova / Maxim Miroshkin (Russia) 134.19
3. Anastasia Dolidze / Vadim Ivanov (Russia) 112.72
1. Anna Yanovskaya / Sergey Mozgov (Russia) 146.96
2. Aleksandra Nazarova / Maxim Nikitin (Ukraine) 131.68
3. Maria Simonova / Dmitri Dragun (Russia) 125.22