This month, there have been multiple reports in the Russian media about internal conflicts between Alexandra Trusova and Alena Kostornaia at Evgeny Plushenko’s figure skating academy. Sports news website Sport Express was recently able to get an interview with Plushenko and just published an excerpt from it – about keeping the two famed skaters separate and who coaches them.
English translation of the excerpt from Evgeny Plushenko’s interview with Sport Express:
Plushenko: Sergei Rozanov really hasn’t been working with Sasha for a long time, that’s true. He leads Alena. Sasha and Alena have separate teams, both choreographers and coaches. These are two different teams. Only I work with both of them. It was Sasha’s decision, I supported it. Seryozha had no questions. It happened.
Sport Express (SE): Does it bother you that the people who came to your school together broke up almost immediately?
Plushenko: Sasha came separately. Nobody came together. I say it how it is – Sasha came herself. And her dad suggested to invite Sergei. I answered, “Why not, this is a good specialist.”
SE: But they had a good relationship.
Plushenko: Yes. He gave Sasha a short program and free skate, this is his great work. Over time, we began to improve and refine them. But Sergei now has his own work, he is working with Kostornaia, he has two groups.
SE: Okay, let’s take the role of Elena Ilinykh. Also no conflicts?
Plushenko: Lena stopped working with Sasha, Sasha stopped working with Lena. They tried, looked at each other, felt each other but did not grow together.
SE: How long ago did it happen? Elena took Sasha to the test skates.
Plushenko: Somewhere just after the test skates. Sasha has new specialists, we are still taking on other trainers. Lena works with other athletes, Kostornaia. In general, we have a lot of students: Titova, Sarnovsky, the Zhilinas. She won’t go anywhere.
SE: Do they have a conflict with Trusova?
Plushenko: There are no conflicts with either Rozanov or Ilinykh.
UPDATED ON OCTOBER 17, 2020:
Full translated interview of Evgeny Plushenko with Sport Express: here.