Sochi: The Face of Victory
Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov teamed up in May 2010 and skating experts knew right away this was to be a success. Even after a few days of practice it was obvious how well they were matched. In December, after skating together for five months, Volosozhar and Trankov won the Russian Nationals, upsetting three-time champions Yuko Kavaguti and Alexander Smirnov. Taking the silver medal at the 2011 World Championship, the duet made a splash among fans and rivals. Now they are out for Olympic gold.
Olympic medals, World Championships awards, Bobsleigh World Cup – it seems Alexander Zubkov got it all, but he says that neither age – he will celebrate his 40th birthday – nor the number of trophies would stop him from competing for gold in Sochi.
The first Russian skip to ever play in the World Championships – Andrei Drozdov, the captain of the Russian curling team, is an athlete who knows what it means to fight for his dreams. Despite the fact that his team hasn’t yet shown the results comparable to the world’s curling champs, the athlete is determined to win Olympic medals in Sochi.
Ivan Skobrev, a 30-year old speed skater, is getting better with age and is now reaching his peak. His best chances are over the long distances. He had top three finishes in his last three World Cup long distance outings, and added silver in the 10 km race at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Ivan Skobrev is the main hope of the Russian speed skating team.
Olga Fatkulina competed for Russia at the 2010 Winter Olympics in the Ladies' 500 m and Ladies' 1,000 m. In the 2013 World Single Distance Speed Skating Championships she caused a sensation winning the gold medal in the 1,000 meters race. Today experts stake on the 23-year-old athlete to become the gold medalist in Sochi.
Alexander Tretiakov is only 28 years old but he has already won every possible title in skeleton. He is the first Russian to win The World Championships, the overall Skeleton World Cup and an Olympic bronze medal. It’s even more impressive considering that his experience in skeleton is not so broad – Tretiakov’s first passion was bobsleigh. However, he wasn’t fit enough for this winter sport that has strict body weight requirements so Alexander switched to skeleton. His professional career took off in 2003 and in only one year he became the main hope of the Russian skeleton team.
Alexander Legkov wrote his name in the history books as he became the first Russian to win the men’s Tour de Ski title this year. The 30-year-old Russian cross country skier has been competing since 2002, but his success came as a surprise both for the fans and experts. Now he is one of the main contenders for the Olympic gold in Sochi.
Three-time World Champion, seven-time European Champion, four-time Grand Prix Final gold medalist and a holder of three Olympic trophies, Evgeni Plushenko doesn’t need to be introduced to the public as his name has already become synonymous with success, will and victory. At 30 he is one of the most titled figure skaters in the world. And the Sochi Olympics are just another occasion to replenish his award box.
Double Olympic champion and triple world champion, Olga Zaitseva is not your average biathlete. Over the course of her career, she has reached twelve personal World Cup wins, ranking twelfth for all-time career victories in the history of the International Biathlon Union. At the Sochi Olympics Zaitseva has a great chance to celebrate 20 years of her sporting achievements with new medals.
Absolute champion of European Biathlon Championship 2008, the bronze medalist of the Winter Olympic Games 2010 the 24-year-old Shipulin has two World Cup wins to his name, as well as six podiums and nineteen top ten results. Aside from his wins, his biggest personal success was the bronze medal at the 2012 world championship pursuit in Ruhpolding. And now he’s determined to get to the top of the Sochi Olympics podium.
Figure skating wunderkind. That’s how Adelina Sotnikova became known among sport fans and buffs. At the age of only 13 she performed jumps that not all adult skaters are capable of demonstrating. Now being 17, she is the 2013 European silver medalist and a three-time Russian national champion. On the junior level, she is the 2011 World Junior Champion, the 2010 Junior Grand Prix Finals Champion and 2012 Youth Olympics silver medalist.
The first Russian female luger champ in more than three decades, Tatiana Ivanova became a star overnight when she surprised both fans and rivals winning the gold medal at the 2010 European championships in Sigulda. After successfully defending her title for the next two years, Ivanova has became the main hope of the Russian luge team in Sochi.
Luge is his life, passion and work. Albert Demchenko is an old stager among Russian lugers – his list of awards goes all the way back to 1992, when he took part in his first Olympics. Since then, he represented Russia in 5 more Winter Games, winning silver in 2006 in Turin. Demchenko is also a three times European champion. It took him 15 years to get his most prestigious title – World Cup 2004-2005, and being 41 years old, he’s aiming at gold in Sochi.
Evgeni Malkin is Russian hockey’s main hope in Sochi. “Geno” as the US fans call him, recently became the first hockey player in 30 years to match hockey legend Canadian Wayne Gretzky’s record – a feat that got him recognized as the best scorer both in the NHL and the World Cup. Experts are saying that the record-breaking forward will breaking even more records in the 2014 Winter Olympics
He’s the first player in the history of the NHL to win the Art Ross Trophy, Maurice Richard Trophy, Lester B. Peason Award and Hart Memorial Trophy –all four in a single season! Alexander Ovechkin is only 27 years old but has already become a living legend. He’s won so many awards and broken so many records that listing them take up the whole show and no wonder he’s both feared and admired by his rivals. He is fast, he is accurate and he’s out to grab some medals at the Sochi Olympics.