The sensational return of Evgenia Medvedeva to Eteri Tutberidze eclipsed everything that happened in figure skating in recent months. Will the best coach in the world manage to save the career of the once beloved student? This is the main intrigue for at least the upcoming season.
However, it is already obvious that a bold step will bring huge benefits to Medvedeva. Even if she continues to disrupt the programs and will not win any more tournaments. Wife will no longer have to spend fabulous money on a well-promoted Canadian coach who never helped her become the best version of herself, but definitely became a “golden” mentor for Zhenya. Of course, only the athlete herself can evaluate the results of these investments, but at least financially, she will only benefit from parting with Orser.
So how much did Medvedeva’s two-year business trip to Canada cost?
Medvedeva paid Orser out of her own pocket
Having finally decided to leave the Tutberidze group, Medvedev was faced with a choice: to end her career or start working with Brian Orser. Other options, according to the skater herself, she simply did not consider. In Toronto, the two-time world champion found a second home, new comrades and a coach-friend, whom she so lacked in Russia.
In the Cricket Club, Medvedeva faced a fundamentally different format of the relationship between an athlete and a mentor. Moreover, the difference concerned not only the training process, but also the financial issue. If the activities of the coaching staff of Eteri Tutberidze are financed from budget sources, then Orser works as is customary in the West – he takes payment for a specific time allotted to an athlete. According to Alexander Gorshkov, the federation reimbursed Medvedeva for living in Canada and flights to competitions, but the athlete paid for Orser’s services herself.
How much Orser earned from Medvedeva
Of course, Medvedev is unlikely to ever name the exact cost of her two-year voyage to North America, but the order of the numbers is clear. Orser’s current rate is not known for certain, but in 2010, a top specialist charged $ 110 per hour. Starting to work with Medvedeva, he clarified that the cost of his services since then has increased slightly. Thus, Brian, most likely, received from Eugenia about $ 400-500 per day.
According to rough estimates, Zhenya spent about 18 months in Toronto, plus Orser accompanied her at some tournaments, where the training process did not stop either. Based on this, it can be assumed that Medvedev spent at least $ 250 thousand directly on training with the eminent mentor. At the current exchange rate, it turns out a little less than 19 million rubles.
Experience without result
Whether such a significant investment has paid off, only the athlete herself knows. In general, there was definitely a point in such spending, because if it were not for Orser and not Canada, then Zhenya could really end her career. After the Olympics in Pyeongchang, she felt the need to radically change her life and was ready to pay for it. The presence of large sponsors and the demand for the show gave her a certain financial freedom, which most other Russian skaters are deprived of.
Another thing is that the champion went to Toronto not only for new experience, but also for results, but with this there were problems. If the unexpected bronze medal of the World Championship in Saitama was a good end to a difficult debut season, then there was no noticeable progress.
Return to budget
No matter how much more Medvedev survived in Toronto, we will never know, since the coronavirus pandemic intervened here. Together with the competitions, the shows in Japan were canceled, where athletes of Medvedeva’s level receive more than $ 10 thousand for one exit on the ice.
Having lost a solid income and faced with serious problems in preparation for the season, Zhenya could not help but think that attempts to return to the champion’s orbit are very expensive for her. I do not presume to argue that the financial factor has become a determining factor, but he certainly played some role in Medvedeva’s decision. Yes, she will have to give part of the income from advertising and shows to her school, but the training process will again be paid by the state.
This means that Zhenya may not be afraid of the cancellation of the show or the massive outflow of sponsors. Naturally, while it gets into the Russian national team on a sports principle.