“RODNAJA GAZETA” #4(189), February 01, 2007, column 59
Oksana Domnina: I won’t trade Shabalin for Kostomarov
At the European figure skating championships in Warsaw, our guys only won two silvers. Oksana Domnina and Maxim Shabalin became second in ice dance, while Maria Petrova and Alexei Tikhonov did so in pair skating. What makes the 2006/2007 season unusual is that it’s skipped by the Olympic champions Tatiana Totmianina and Maxim Marinin, Tatiana Navka and Roman Kostomarov, Evgeny Plushenko, and the bronze medalist Irina Slutskya.
Obviously, the team ceded some ground without its leaders. However, we also have a great addition – Domnina and Shabalin. Alexei Groshkov’s duo came ninth at the 2006 Turin Olympics, and here they come out with European silver!
‘We didn’t have any goals for this season’, admitted Domnina. ‘We just trained hard, and the programs came out well – I especially like our free to Borodin’s “Polovtsian Dances”. That’s very important, because if you miss with your programs, you won’t get high marks even if you skate cleanly. We were lucky – it’s really a hit.’
’Oksana, you impressed everyone with your thick blonde braid in “Polovtsian Dances!’
‘It’s a fake braid. I have long hair, but not long enough for such hairdo. I just decided that I had to look like a Russian beauty in that dance. I suggested to our choreographer Sergei Petukhov, “Let me skate with a braid”. He was surprised, “How?” I say, “I’ll figure out how to do it”. So I attached the braid with barrettes and clasps. Everyone liked it, except for Shabalin (Smiling). The braid swings and hits Maxim in the face. ’
’You skate in rather open dresses. Didn’t the International Skating Union forbid such costumes?’
‘No, we can show some cleavage. I like to show my chest when the music dictates such necessity. At least a little, to emphasize my shape. Than god, that has always been allowed – you can imagine, say, Carmen, in a dress that covers all.’
’Is it true that this season you were going to skate with Kostomarov?’
‘I don’t know how generates such gossip! I think people just have nothing to talk about, so they meddle in everyone’s business. Shabalin is my partner, and I don’t want to change him.’
’I heard that the two of you are also serious about alpine skiing?’
‘Yes, we love that sport, but only as amateurs. Unfortunately, we’re not allowed to do extreme sport on the eve of competition to avoid injury. One time, though, Shabalin and I were just dying to mountain ski at the height of the season. So, we take all the equipment, get out the door, and just then our coach is walking toward us. We got into so much trouble then!’
Material was compiled by Daria Srebnitskaya