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Manifesto of innocence: how Valieva speaks on a forbidden topic

Back in October, the Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) intended to announce a verdict in the case of the champion of the team Olympic tournament in Beijing, Kamila Valieva. But all the information was then classified because of the special status of the Russian figure skater, who was 15 years old at the time of the violation. Camila herself says nothing. But at the same time he is not silent. How is this possible? Sports correspondent understood how.

Last week, Kamila Valieva made her hometown of Kazan happy. More precisely, those of its inhabitants who were lucky enough to buy a ticket to the Sports Palace, where the third stage of the Russian Grand Prix was held. It is very likely that this building was the leader in the country in terms of the number of delights per square meter last Saturday and Sunday, given that the small arena was packed to capacity. People screamed, squealed, gasped, gave a standing ovation – and all this range of emotions was caused by a single girl, whose name thousands of fans began to chant, even when they did not see her, but only hoped that she might appear in sight.

What a contrast to this picture are the comments on some forums where those who call themselves fans of figure skating speak. If you don't believe me, open it. Under each note, where the name of Valieva is mentioned, there are charges of hatred. And they judge her too generously. And she looks too full. And her costumes are dark. And her programs suck. And finally, the main hater stigma. Dopingist. Dopingist. Dopingist. They write this word so often, as if they are hoping to persuade RUSADA to issue the harshest verdict that is possible in the Valieva case.

It is clear that some of these haters are fans of Valieva's rivals, whom blind love for some makes them hate others and speak exclusively in the vein of “A Baba Yaga is against.” You can’t explain anything to them, and they don’t want to hear anything, so it’s not worth trying. But there is a more adequate part of the public, which, in general, is quite legitimately perplexed – why is Camila silent? After all, nine months have passed since the moment when it became known about her positive doping test. Is it possible that during this period there was no intelligible explanation of how a microscopic amount of the heart drug trimetazidine ended up in her body?

Well, in Beijing, Valieva, running through the mixed zone, pulled her hood over her head, not knowing what to say to her. The news of a positive test hit her in a moment of insane happiness – the day after the Olympic victory. This is a big shock. But why is Camila now doing the same thing with the hood: on the ice in a free program in the literal sense, and in a conversation with journalists – figuratively, refusing to answer questions about doping? Moreover, the figure skater has matured a lot – tests of this magnitude clearly contributed, and it is in her manner of reasoning that this is felt. She does not feel a bit of shyness in dealing with the press, her speech is absolutely connected, her thoughts are expressed clearly, and she would have no problem making a public statement that would remove all questions.

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Kamila Valieva during a speech with arbitrary program. /11/3a96aa1f6c56a1fd8db36ded5b144fb1.jpg” />

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Kamila Valieva during her free program.


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Kamila Valieva during her free dance performance program.

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Kamila Valieva during her free program.

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Kamila Valieva during a performance with a free program. -content/uploads/2022/11/53a8302e4cb4a2b7a000e753012710ee.jpg” />

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Kamila Valieva during her short program.

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Kamila Valieva during her performance with a short program.

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Camila Valiev after the performance. Kamila Valieva during a performance with a free program.

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Kamila Valieva during a performance with a free program.< /p>

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Kamila Valieva during her performance with a free program.


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Kamila Valieva during a performance with a free program.

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p>Kamila Valieva during a performance with a free program.

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Kamila Valieva during a performance with a short program .

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Kamila Valieva during her short program.

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Kamila Valieva after the performance.


But here I want to remember the world champion in hurdling Sergei Shubenkov. Yes, yes, the very one who also found doping in microscopic quantities. Who back in the spring, commenting on the case of Valieva, said something like this: “The same left-handed” sticky as I have. And he is right, because the situation is really very similar. Both Sergey and Camila have only one test with a “plus”, and all the rest, before and after, with a “minus”. Shubenkov was not suspended from training and competitions for the duration of the investigation, Valieva also continues to perform.

So, look – Shubenkov, while collecting evidence that the prohibited substance got into his body by accident, did not give a single comment. The reasons are legal. Where lawyers work, public statements cannot help in any way, but they can do harm. That is why Valieva is also silent. Her case is handled by lawyers, it is not yet completed, and it is possible that RUSADA's verdict will not be the final point. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) may appeal it.But it is far from certain that it will do this, and this was proved by the same case of Shubenkov. Where the evidence of the accidental reception of the “prohibited” was so irrefutable that the verdict of acquittal suited absolutely all parties. It is sometimes said that WADA is a punitive body, but this is far from being the case. After all, it was according to WADA rules that Valieva received the status of a protected person in this case, according to which the main attention in the investigation is paid to the actions of the athlete’s entourage. Because, in fact, Camila fell into this nightmare with almost no chance of escaping it. jpg” />

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Kamila Valieva after her performance in Kazan.

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Kamila Valieva and Eteri Tutberidze before a performance in Kazan. wp-content/uploads/2022/11/0dae350e99318f4168d018e84df461c9.jpg” />

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Kamila Valieva and Eteri Tutberidze after a performance in Kazan.

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Kamila Valieva at the awards ceremony in Moscow.

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Kamila Valieva after a performance in Kazan.

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Kamila Valieva and Eteri Tutberidze before a performance in Kazan .

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Kamila Valieva and Eteri Tutberidze after the performance in Kazan.

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Kamila Valieva at the awards ceremony in Moscow.

Judge for yourself. The option that a 15-year-old girl went to a pharmacy, bought doping and took it herself, thank God, is rejected even by the incorrigible haters of the figure skater. The option in which the coaches told her: “Kamilochka, know that we are giving you illegal drugs” is also absolute nonsense. And in all other cases – either getting trimetazidine into her body randomly, or through the conscious actions of some villain – Camila's fault cannot be in principle. Well, unless, of course, you do not expect that the child will start shaking adults about every pill that they give him. Do you know such children? WADA doesn't know either, and that's why it demands to investigate first of all the actions of those who surround the child.

But about whose fault it is, we will discuss later, when we still find out – what we want to hope for – the verdict. In the meantime, just stating – Camila is innocent. Now put yourself in her place. You are a little man who is just starting to live and who was suddenly plunged into some kind of hell. And in Beijing, it was hell for her. In addition to the psychological breakdown in the free program of the personal tournament, which was witnessed by viewers from all over the planet, there were also suffocating tears backstage. Including after that very passage, as if through a labyrinth with snakes, through a mixed zone stuffed with thirsty “blood” reporters. What then Camila experienced a tantrum, many have seen.

As a result, the Beijing nightmare ends. But you suddenly begin to rinse for no reason at all in your homeland, your own compatriots. Of course, Camila does not read all this hate, but she knows about it. And she even talked about it. So what would you like to do in her place now? And you can't. Lawyers, investigation, everything mentioned above. You see, Valieva really wants to tell what happened to her. But he can't. Words – can't.

But it can do it in another way. And does. That's what her free program, dedicated to the events of Beijing 2022, is like, with disturbing music, a piercing gaze and the same hood. It's a manifesto of innocence. Valiev was asked if it would be difficult to perform this program for the entire season. “Of course not,” she replied, and this is the true truth. She says with this program on the ice what she wildly wants, but cannot say in words.

Reflections caught my eye, whether the choice by the coaching staff of Eteri Tutberidze of such a program for Valieva looks controversial in a situation where the investigation is not completed. No, the choice is not just not controversial, it is absolutely correct. We do not know what the outcome of this investigation will be. Perhaps it turns out that the coaches are guilty of something, at least of some kind of negligence. But no matter what was said in the verdict – a huge respect to the headquarters for giving Camila the opportunity to say: I have absolutely nothing to do with it.

And what is very important – thanks to this program, Camila's spiritual wounds heal. Remember, during the first performance of this manifesto in public at the end of September, at the test skates, the figure skater burst into tears right on the ice. The pain of the insult that was inflicted on her, I am sure, was physically felt by everyone who saw this scene. Now it is obvious that Valieva is slowly leaving this situation in the past. After the performance in Kazan, she not only didn’t cry – she laughed when she decided to play a little trick and went to jump over the quadruple, which didn’t work out in the program, even before grading.


Forever in the past, the case will remain when it is closed, this is understandable. But not just like that, Camila made fun of a journalist at the Moscow stage of the Grand Prix, who asked a question on a “forbidden” topic. I would not like to talk about it – I would just keep silent or answer “no comment”. And she just seemed to be waiting for the opportunity to pin the one who dares. Because you want to!

And Valieva will definitely tell everything someday. More precisely, it will complement what he talks about with his program on ice. Although the expressive abilities of this figure skater are so massive that even now everything becomes clear without words.

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