Lubov Iliushechkina finds harmony with new partner Yannick Kocon

Liubov Iliushechkina and Yannick Kocon

According to French online edition Ouest France, a former Russian pair figure skater Lubov Iliushechkina is successfully preparing for the upcoming season with her potentially new partner Yannick Kocon. The possible new French pair team is working in Paris, at La Roche-sur-Yon skating rink under the guidance of a coach Jean-Roland Racle.

Iliushechkina had split up with her former partner Nodari Maisuradze in March 2012. With Maisuradze she is the 2010 Skate Canada Champion, 2009 World Junior Champion, 2008 World Junior silver medalist, and 2009 Russian bronze medalist. In May this year, it was reported that Iliushechkina would like to skate for France with Yannick Kocon but the Figure Skating Federation of Russia was unwilling to release her.

Yannick Kocon began his pair skating career in 2007 when he teamed up with Italian Nicole Della Monica. Together Della Monica/Kocon are the 2009 and 2010 Italian national champions. They represented Italy at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, where they finished 12th. Their partnership ended in January 2011: Della Monica had a chronic inflammation in her left knee and the recovery time was uncertain.

The French edition does not inform about resolving of bureaucratic problems associated with Iliushechkina and her former skating federation. Most likely both skaters will have to wait some time for the opportunity to perform at major figure skating competitions. At the moment the team of Iliushechkina/Kocon is preparing for the Masters d’Orléans which will be held in October.

Iliushechkina found out that Kocon is free through the Internet and decided to try. “I wanted to change my approach to figure skating and skate not only because of duty but for my pleasure too.” said Iliushechkina.

“Maybe it sounds a little bit strange but my main criterion was that she is small and weighs 30 kg less than me. This is very important in pair skating.” commented Kocon.

Jean-Roland Racle has another pair skaters, who also have found each other through the Internet – Czech skater Nicolas Hejzlar, who teamed up with French Méliné Habechian.

Photo: Ouest France

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