The legendary Soviet figure skater, two-time Olympic champion in pair skating Lyudmila Belousova, speaking in a duet with Oleg Protopopov, has died on 82-m to year of life. This was reported in his Twitter , the producer of the American television 6ABC Kristen Beatty with reference to the Ice Network. Death Belousova confirmed honored figure skating coach Alexei Mishin and Tamara Moskvina.
Recently Belousova and her husband Oleg Protopopov, having Swiss citizenship, lived and worked in Switzerland and the United States, said the Agency “R-Sport”.
“Ludmila Belousova-Protopopov died at the age of 81 years. I am proud that I rode to the show with her and enjoyed her tips,” wrote Beatty. “I was told about her death is a big loss, for me especially. Because I’m a half of his sporting life spent with her and Oleg in one locker room,” said Mishin Agency TASS.
The President of Federation of figure skating in Russia (FCCR) Alexander Gorshkov said that Belousov was an outstanding athlete for her performances in a pair with a partner and still remain the standard.
“Ludmila was a very nice, intelligent man, very pleasant woman. I, like the whole world would accept them with Oleg as a whole. It was a unique, amazing couple! For our country they are the pioneers, first for the Soviet Union and Russia won the Olympic gold medal in pairs figure skating in 1964. And then won a second brilliant victory at the Olympics in 1968,” Gorshkov said the Agency “R-Sport”.
“They have always been not only outstanding athletes, but creative human beings, he created his own unique style, their programs are unforgettable and are still the benchmark. They were fanatically committed to skating, he has dedicated all his life”, – said the head of the Federation.
“They belong to several variants of such elements as the death spiral. The news is very sad, we are very sorry about what happened,” – said Gorshkov in comments TASS.
The famous choreographer, silver medalist of Olympic games in ice dancing Ilya Averbukh, who knew figure skaters in person, in comments to REN TV called Belousova and Protopopov “reference pair” and “a symbol of great love of life.”
According to Averbuch, for their crook based new generation of skaters. “Now I can only imagine the condition of Oleg, because they are one or two people who devoted themselves entirely to figure skating. They are not just Champions of the Champions have so many titles, most importantly – they are the couple that underpins all of the development of figure skating. About this title is the dream of any skater. It was such an honor,” he said.
“Happy I know them personally and worked. They were in one of my ice show. And in my head this speech remain forever,” – said Averbukh.
Lyudmila Belousova was born November 22, 1935 in Ulyanovsk, and later moved with his parents to Moscow. Since childhood engaged in various kinds of sports, from 16 years started skating. Her first partner was Kirill Gulyaev, but he retired from the sport, and Belousova began competing in singles, while in 1954 met Oleg Protopopov.
Belousova and Protopopov won gold at the Games in 1964 in Innsbruck and the Olympic games of 1968 in Grenoble. On their account four victories at the world Championships and four gold medals at the European Championships.
February 25, 2003, for the first time in 20 years, Belousova came with Protopopov in Russia at the invitation of Vyacheslav Fetisov. In November 2005, the couple visited Russia at the invitation of the Federation of figure skating of St. Petersburg. They attended the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, was interviewed.
In September 2015, a 79-year-old Lyudmila Belousova and 83-year-old Oleg Protopopov performed on ice in the United States in the program “Evening with Champions”.