GENERICO.ruSportDon't disgrace your family name! How children of great figure skaters make it

Don't disgrace your family name! How children of great figure skaters make it

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Daughter of two-time Olympic medalist Irina Slutskaya – Varvara – moved to a famous ice dancing group and received a promising partner Gleb Goncharov. Children of figure skating legends rarely follow the path of their parents, but Sport tells who and how makes their way in life with outstanding genes.

Ivan Bukin

Their couple with Alexandra Stepanova has been representing our country in competitions for so long and successfully that you are slowly starting to forget about the even more “star” trail of Ivan’s dad – Andrei Bukin. And he, by the way, is not just a figure skater, but a real legend of ice dancing. Together with Natalya Bestemyanova, they fought with the great British Jane Torvill/Christopher Dean, won the Olympics, and won the World Championship four times. If Torvill/Dina had not been in our Universe, the Bestemyanov/Bukin couple could have remained in history as perhaps the greatest of the “old guard.” However, they are already somewhere close to this.

There is a stereotype that children of such famous parents usually do not achieve even part of the results of their fathers and mothers. However, Ivan Bukin certainly did not disgrace the star’s name. From a young age he was considered an extremely promising partner, and in his mature years he only confirmed this status. And then – victories at all prestigious junior tournaments (they even beat France's same-year-old Gabriella Papadakis/Guillaume Cizeron!) three gold medals at the Russian Championships, medals at the European Championships, performance at the Olympics… And all this – formally in the status of the country's second pair.
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Now that the long-term leaders of our dances, Victoria Sinitsina/Nikita Katsalapov, have put their careers on pause, Stepanova/Bukin could begin a full-fledged golden time. “Malina” is spoiled only by the suspension of the Russian national team. But when it is over, Sasha and Vanya will have every chance of a great triumph.

Alexander Plushenko (Gnome Gnomych)

Having dad is a two-time Olympic champion, it’s impossible not to skate. Little Sasha grew up next to the ice – Evgeni Plushenko still had an active competitive career and ice shows did not stop. And the mother of the future figure skater, Yana Rudkovskaya, even started skating for the sake of her husband and was actively involved in promoting figure skating.

Over time, the influence of star parents inevitably spread to Alexander. Now he is 11 years old, he can do triple jumps, shines in shows and dreams of big victories – Sasha wants to win as many as five Olympic Games alone. And Alexander is the most popular Russian singles skater. His account alone on the famous social network has about 1.5 million subscribers.

Diana Davis

Even though Eteri Tutberidze has not achieved great heights in her sports career, she has had no equal in the coaching field for many years. At the same time, Eteri Georgievna decided on her main “project” quite a long time ago. Having in her circle the great Alina Zagitova, Evgenia Medvedeva, Anna Shcherbakova, Alexandra Trusova, Kamila Valieva, Alena Kostornaya and others, she did not hesitate to declare that her priority was her daughter’s career.

In her youth, Diana trained in single skating with her mother, but due to health problems it was difficult for her to realize her full potential. Eteri Georgievna realized this and herself suggested that her daughter switch to ice dancing. This decision turned out to be correct – paired with Gleb Smolkin, Diana not only got the opportunity to compete at the Olympic Games, but also became a silver medalist at the Russian Championship.

Since 2023, the Davis/Smolkin pair has been playing for Georgia. And judging by the current balance of power in the world, they will have every chance to compete for a team medal at the 2026 Olympics in Milan.

Ksenia Makarova

The daughter of the famous Soviet players Oleg Makarov and Larisa Selezneva, who left for the United States after finishing their careers, Ksenia first played for the States, but then decided to join the Russian national team. The years of her sports career occurred during stagnation in our women's singles, and yet Ksenia managed to remain in history. For example, in 2009 she won her debut Russian championship, beating future legends Elizaveta Tuktamysheva and Adelina Sotnikova. However, she was never able to confirm her success on the international stage.

And Ksenia is one of the first Russian figure skaters to start learning quadruples. Oleg Makarov said in an interview that one of these attempts ended in a serious ligament injury, after which thoughts about quads were put on pause. And yet, according to him, Ksenia’s quad was on the way.

Sophia-Diana Cousins

Sofia-Diana grew up in a real sports family. Mom is Olympic champion in pair skating Elena Berezhnaya, dad is British figure skater Stephen Cousins. So it’s not surprising that by the age of 14, Sofia had firmly established herself in pair skating, and Berezhnaya’s former coach, the legendary Tamara Moskvina, took up her duet with Alexander Bregey.

In their first season together, Sofia and Alexander won bronze at the St. Petersburg Junior Championships and came second at the Senior National Championships. And there is reason to believe that in the future the results will improve.

Polina Tikhonova

Her fate is somewhat reminiscent of Ksenia Makarova. Polina’s parents are Alexey Tikhonov and Maria Petrova, world champions and two-time European champions in pair skating, but their daughter went into singles skating. And we have to admit that 14-year-old Polina looks great for her first steps at the junior level.

Last season she was constantly near the podium at the stages of the Russian Junior Grand Prix, despite the huge level of competition and the absence (yet?) of her ultra-si. At the main competitions – the Russian Championship and the Grand Prix Final – things turned out worse (10th and 7th places), but still ahead.

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