Valentina Rodionenko: we do not set the task to surprise this year, the main sights are the Olympic Games
Interview with Valentina Rodionenko after yesterday’s AA final.
She mentions that all athletes seem to be feeling good emotionally. Of course, there are little pains here and there, but that’s part of the sport. They are showing that they are close to getting ready for the World Championships.
She says USA, Romania, GB and Japan as their biggest rivals and they have seen what difficulties and what elements they have in their routines. They are trying to adapt to that. They have a lot of young girls who will go to their first Worlds, so they want to test them now so they will have more experience for next year, when they have to qualify for Rio. They are not trying to surprise this year.
The girls have done well over the summer and all of them have more difficulty. They do not want them to perform their absolute best right now, because there are 5 more weeks until they compete (they leave September 27th) and then is the time to shine. Because their qualifications are in the morning, they have adapted their schedules to that.
They have big hopes for Maria Kharenkova in the beam final and she’s also happy to be able to welcome the girls born in 1999 next year. She says they are very happy and thankful to Aliya Mustafina, who has really helped the younger girls get ready and more understanding of how things work.
Japan? How bout China V-rod?
Her brother bought a bicycle to take her but it broke sometimes.
Her mother had to borrow money to buy food and there was no money left for anything else, the clothes she had were donated by people who knew her. The gym she went was a public one and the breakfast that was left was donated to her family.
Her coach, Keli Kitaura, knew that Rebecca had talent so she asked her mother if she (Rebecca) could live with her, so she wouldn’t miss practices anymore. They lived together for some time, but Keli had to move to Curitiba, a city far away from where they were living.
When she was settled in, Rebecca moved there and after some time Keli was hired by Flamengo (where Jade, the Hypolitos and a huge part of brazilian team go) and they both moved again. Now she and other 9 girls live with Keli and her husband.
She also has a contract with a telecommunications company and a salary of Flamengo, the brazilian team and bolsa atleta, a government assistance to athletes. With that money she helps her mother that doesn’t have any more depts and her 3 siblings are also doing gymnastics.
Just thought you all should know it :)