Swedish skating club pressured into canceling Russian masterclass – reports
Russian Olympic silver medalist Alexandra Trusova will no longer hold a set of masterclasses in Stockholm after the Swedish Figure Skating Federation canceled them, according to reports.
The classes were scheduled to take place over two days on the weekend of August 27 and 28 in Sweden's capital, while costing around 1,895 Swedish Krona ($185) for locals looking to emulate the prodigious 18-year-old and learn a few tips from her.
According to Match TV, however, the budding hopefuls will not have the chance to meet their idol after the Swedish federation sent a letter to skating clubs confirming its wishes, claiming that the classes would be "contrary to the values of the association" and capable of causing "serious damage to Swedish figure skating."
Match had also reported on Thursday that the Stockholm Figure Skating Federation made a similar demand, which has now been heeded.
Tickets were still available for purchase on the event's official site as of Friday morning, although the press service of the Djurgardens IF Konstakning club confirmed to TASS that the event had been scrapped.
The move is no doubt influenced by feelings in Sweden towards Russia's military operation in Ukraine, which have elsewhere seen Russian skaters banned from international competition by the International Skating Union (ISU), meaning they will miss the entirety of the 2022/23 season. Russia has also been stripped of the traditional Grand Prix it holds annually as part of the ISU series.
Reacting to the news about Trusova, legendary coach Tatiana Tarasova suggested that the decision had been made by the ISU and not the Swedish federation.
"I think they put pressure on the Swedes," Tarasova stated to Match TV.
"The Swedes received a call from the international federation, saying that there should be no Russian athletes, that they would not participate in any competitions, and therefore, probably, it was impossible to teach.
"Initially, when it became known about Trusova's master class, I expected that something would happen."
Though 'quad queen' Trusova has now been frozen out in Stockholm, she and her fellow Russian figure skating stars from Beijing 2022, Anna Shcherbakova and Kamila Valieva, could still be headed to China for a lucrative tour.
Earlier this week, Li Jun of Beijing Global Dynamic Media explained how the Russian trio enjoy immense popularity in the world's most populous country therefore making a series of shows a potential blockbuster success.
While Shcherbakova claimed gold in the women's singles, Valieva was one of the heroes of a team event win before a doping row affected her performance in the individual competition.
"We are actively planning a tour of Russian athletes such as Anna Shcherbakova, Alexandra Trusova and Kamila Valieva in China, which will actually be very beneficial for them in the future," Li said to Russian outlet RIA, while also revealing that they are collectively known as 'Sanva' in China which means ‘Three Va’ in reference to the endings of their surnames.
“We hope that the Sanva – Shcherbakova, Trusova and Valieva – will soon be able to come to China to participate in an ice show to fulfill the desire of many fans and give them the opportunity to see the performance of Russian skaters live, because they skate incredibly beautifully and impressively," Li also said.
Though she only managed to finish second in Beijing, Trusova made history by becoming the first ever women's skater to pull off five quads in a single routine.