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“I don’t act with a crown on my head.” Former skier of the Russian national team: about victories in biathlon

Date: June 14, 2024 Time: 18:09:38

Natalia Shevchenko, of course, surprised Russian ski and biathlon fans last winter. She switched to a new sport in the summer of 2022 and literally a few months after her first rifle training, she already outshone everyone at the Russian Championships: there she won three golds.

“Championship” spoke with Natalya at the beginning of her second season in biathlon. The athlete sets high goals, but at the same time she talks about the difficulties that she will have to go through this winter.

Should we expect new developments from Shevchenko?

“I can perform at the level of experienced biathletes”

– Natalia, you already have an entire biathlon season behind you. The second began. Is it possible to summarize last year’s results now? – The season has gone well, even much better than I expected. I thought it would be attractive to me. In general, I did not even expect to participate in all races. But in all the competitions I participated in I ran everywhere. Sure there were some illnesses, but judging by the volume and results of the races, we can say that the season was great! This was unexpected.

At first it was supposed to start performing only in winter. But Mikhail Viktorovich Shashilov saw in me the desire and readiness to run. He was sure that he could already free me to begin with. So I also managed to roller skate at Tchaikovsky, and then the winter competitions began. A year ago no goals were set. Already during the season it became clear that he could participate in all races. Everything depended on the state of health.

– What is your success due to? Is it a matter of preparation? – There are no accidents. This is the result of a lot of work.

– And probably determination. – Naturally. If she didn’t have desires and goals, nothing would have turned out right.

Long interview with Shevchenko after the winter results:


“The coach seems to be afraid of me.” Former skier Shevchenko talks about her first season in biathlon

– If it’s not a secret, what goals are you setting for yourself now? – For the next winter season, I set myself much higher goals. I already understand that I can compete at the level of experienced biathletes and fight with them. First of all, spend the season as calmly as possible, without illness. God forbid any injury. It is clear that the main competitions are the Spartakiad of the Strongest and the Russian Championship at the end of the season. Basically, the ideal would be to finish in the top 6 in each race. I will try.

– And if we talk about the Russian Cup, how many places in the top 6 should there be for you to be satisfied with yourself? – In my opinion, in the Russian Cup there are three races in each stage. If I finish in the top six in two out of three races, it will be great. It is clear that you want to give your best and always be in medals, but this is biathlon and everything is unpredictable here. Also, I’m not that stable of a shooter yet, although I can accomplish a lot. This season there will be races with bad shots.

Right now all the difficulty lies in shooting. Everyone knows that I can work for zero. And the trainers demand more and more. Bad thoughts start to arise in my head. They tell me it’s fine. If I filmed the first season, the second may be a failure. I don’t stop at this. It all depends on the person, on his mood, on his work.

Natalia Shevchenko

Photo: RIA Novosti

At the same time, I can’t say that this season I perform with a crown on my head, I am so famous and cool. No! There are still many mistakes and they are repeated very often, that is why I am working on many components of the shoot. And not only in shooting. Therefore, 100% I still cannot be called a high-level biathlete.

“There were thoughts that I had nothing to do in biathlon”

– Were there moments of desperation when depression invaded you and you wanted to leave everything? Did you say to yourself, “Why did I get involved in this?” – It happened last year. This has not happened yet. A year ago it became clear why he was upset. When a person starts doing something new for himself, not everything is immediately perfect. I thought that this was not for me and that I had nothing to do in biathlon. But they passed quickly.

– What else have you learned during the year and what remains to learn? – It’s good that last year they taught me all the basics. They systematically taught me the basics of everything in this sport. I began to work systematically with shooting: how to shoot, reduce preparation time. There are many nuances there. Now I will increase the shooting speed, but it is important not to lose quality.

– Mikhail Viktorovich recently said that “everything is needed at once.” Are you a maximalist? – He meant that I am a person who needs to try everything at once. For example, when I was taught how to shoot last year, we first looked at the theory, then practiced each element separately, and then together. And I wanted to take the cartridges and immediately became naughty (smiles)! Thank God I have not lost this desire and until now I have no idea that shooting training is tiring me out. On the contrary, I want to run faster and faster to train for shooting.

Mikhail Shashilov

Photo: RIA Novosti

“Anya Grukhvina and I were ready to debate in the media”

– Anna Grukhvina followed in your footsteps. How do you evaluate her decision? Do you think she will make it? – I always believe in her. She should be successful. But it cannot be said that she looked at me and came to the biathlon. She also had various reasons why she switched to another sport. It wasn’t like my girlfriend was going and I’m going too. No, she had reasons for this. Anya is very interested, her eyes sparkle.

– Anna said she wasn’t chasing your success. But journalists and fans still compare. Do you feel the competition? – No, now we do not compete in any way. Anya has her own way. We both understand this and were ready for the discussions in the media. This is good. We even commented that it was good that we didn’t come with her the same year. That would be even worse, 100 percent! The harsh comparison would not only come from strangers. Naturally, Anna gives me as an example of what I did. But she tries not to pay attention to him. She is targeting herself.

– Do you have any advice? – Yes, I am sharing my experience. We talked about all kinds of nuances of what happened to me last season.

Gruhvina brilliantly started her career in the big biathlon:

“8 fails: legendary”. The Russian skier debuted in biathlon as Anfisa Reztsova

“I wouldn’t mind combining biathlon with skiing”

– Which of the girls on the team do you focus on? – If we talk about the functional part, then this is Ira Kazakevich. And if we take the shooting, then against Tamara Derbusheva and Nastya Batmanova. These are the best shooters on the team. Every girl has strengths and weaknesses. And you can get something useful out of everyone.

– The head of the FLGR, Elena Vyalbe, stated that this year there could be a spectacle between skiers and biathletes. Would you like to participate in it? – I can’t imagine what format it will be in. But it would be cool to see it. Let’s say if skiers were shooting, it would be interesting.

– Are you thinking about combining biathlon with skiing? Victoria Slivko will compete in two sports this winter. – I have already been invited. Yegor Sorin told me about this. I haven’t gone into the details yet, but I wouldn’t mind. This is interesting. It would be interesting to run sprint races. In skiing, I looked good in the skate sprint. But I wouldn’t review the classics now! However, everything will depend on the moment.

– He started his performance at the Commonwealth Cup in Sochi with third place and only one penalty. Can you rate the first race? “It was a hectic race.” I broke my pole on the first climb. I was given Ira Kazakevich’s staff. During the climb I changed her three times because she is taller than me. And there was a left cord, but I needed a right one.

– The situation with the admission of our Olympic athletes to Paris 2024 is extremely vague. Our status in the 2026 “white” Olympic Games is even more unclear. Dmitry Guberniev, for example, says that we are not going anywhere. Do you think so too? – Hope is the last thing you lose. But I also evaluate the situation realistically. I don’t think they’ll let us in. We are not even allowed to attend the Biathlon World Cup in any way.

Natalia Shevchenko

Photo: RIA Novosti

– What to do and how to find motivation? – I still have enough motivation to perform in Russia. All because I don’t know what the Biathlon World Championship is. I was not there. I really don’t want to go there yet. I will fight here for now. But if they allow it, it will be good. And if the Olympic Games are held for us, it will also be wonderful. To be honest, I already have plans in my head for this period. There are plans for the future life.

“Life does not end with sport. We need to start a family.”

– Are you a perfectionist? Does everything have to be perfect in training, at home, in your bag? – No, I am not one of the perfectionists (smiles). Many things can affect my mood, but there is no such thing as I can be tired or it’s raining outside and I won’t go to train. There is no ideal outcome of events. You can’t make something perfect. That’s life, there are many factors.

– What do you think of the fact that Therese Johaug returns to the 2025 World Cup in Trondheim? – She is a unique athlete. There are older athletes who have already seen so much in their lives and have a foundation behind them! I think she will be able to come back without training (laughs)!

– What other sports, besides biathlon and skiing, do you practice? – I watch hockey. We have the Avtomobilist HC in Yekaterinburg. When I met my husband, I discovered that he had been following hockey for a long time.

And we started watching games together, going to home games. But I’m not worried about where they’ll be in the regular season. I am interested in the process itself.

– Could it happen that you change sports again and now switch to hockey? – No, this will no longer be interesting to me. After all, life is not that long. And it is not only necessary to develop athletically, but also to start a family. Life does not end with sports.

Shevchenko’s first major victory in biathlon:

“This is the first year a man has held a rifle!” How a former skier won her first biathlon gold

“I haven’t been to Dubai, that’s why I choose Anapa”

– Let’s move on to the bombing. What is your favorite song? – “The Queen” by Anna Asti. I have different songs on my playlist, but this one touched my heart!

– Is this your favorite writer? – Anne Bronte. I like “The Stranger of Wildfell Hall.”

– Favorite animal? – Dog. They are loyal, not like cats.

– Favorite biathlete and biathlete? – Quentin Fillon Maillet and Dinara Alimbekova-Smolskaya.

– Cheesecake or honey cake? – Cheesecake.

– Dubai or Anapa? – I haven’t been to Dubai, so Anapa (smiles)!

– Biathlon in summer or winter? – Definitely in winter!

– Ilya Trifanov or Dmitry Zanin? – Dmitri Zanin.

– Bicycle or scooter? – Bicycle.

– Cappuccino or espresso? – Espresso coffee.

– Perform in Raubichi or Tyumen? – In Raubichi. There are better conditions there.

– Watch a movie at home or in the cinema? – At home. I’m more introverted. But since according to the horoscope I am a Libra, I am also a bit extroverted (smiles).

* This website provides news content gathered from various internet sources. It is crucial to understand that we are not responsible for the accuracy, completeness, or reliability of the information presented Read More

Puck Henry
Puck Henry
Puck Henry is an editor for ePrimefeed covering all types of news.

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