Olympic champion, brand ambassador and Forbes list athlete: What else can Alina Zagitova dream of now she’s turned 18?
Russian figure skating icon Alina Zagitova has only just turned 18, but she already has a huge number of records to be proud of, having achieved all her biggest career goals and won every possible title.
On Monday, the reigning world and Olympic champion celebrated her 18th birthday, and received greetings and presents from all corners of the world.Also on rt.com New programs & national team selection: Is Olympic champ Alina Zagitova set to end competitive skating exile?
In contrast to many athletes, who are just taking their first steps in professional sport at her age, Zagitova has already scooped all the awards that exist in modern figure skating, winning European, Olympic and world titles.
She shot to fame at the age of 15, when she sensationally won the pre-Olympic European championship on her senior debut, beating none other than Russia’s biggest star, Evgenia Medvedeva.
An immensely talented skater, who possessed the most technically complicated program at that time, she revealed her talent at the 2018 Olympic Games, winning the coveted gold with a near-flawless performance.
A year later, she added the sole missing title in her impressive collection of awards at the 2019 world championships, leaving in her wake all her rivals, including Medvedeva.
Along with a splendid sporting career, Zagitova has also made her mark on the beauty industry, becoming the face of the Japanese makeup and skincare company Shiseido.
She also signed a sponsorship deal with sports-outfit giant Puma, promoting its products on her social media accounts.
In 2019, she was named athlete of the year by Glamour magazine in Russia, and was included in Forbes list as one of the highest-paid athletes, with an annual income of almost US$1 million.
Last year, the skater announced a break in her competitive career to concentrate on exhibition shows, where she played leading roles that attracted thousands of fans to the stands.
It’s unknown as yet whether Zagitova will resume her professional sporting career, but, having won all the titles, she can certainly pick and choose what she wants to do – on or off the ice.Also on rt.com 'I don’t owe anyone anything': Russian Olympic figure skating champ Zagitova on her 'haters'