Albena Denkova


Albena Denkova
Albena Denkova

Albena Denkova & Maxim Staviski at the 2004 Worlds.
Personal information
Country represented  Bulgaria
Born 3 December 1974 (1974-12-03) (age 36)
Height 1.65 m (5 ft 5 in)
Partner Maxim Staviski
Former partner Hristo Nikolov
Coach Natalia Linichuk
Gennadi Karpanosov
Former coach Alexei Gorshkov
Former choreographer Sergei Petukhov
Natalia Linichuk
Skating club SC Ice Dance Denkova/Staviski
Retired 2007
ISU personal best scores
Combined total 210.44
2003 Trophée Lalique
Comp. dance 41.05
2004 Skate Canada
Original dance 62.79
2005 Worlds
Free dance 108.03
2003 Trophée Lalique

Albena Denkova (Bulgarian: Албена Денкова) (born 3 December 1974 in Sofia) is a Bulgarian ice dancer. With partner and fiance Maxim Staviski, she is the 2006 & 2007 World Champion, the 2003 & 2004 European silver medalist, and the 2006 Grand Prix Final champion. Denkova & Staviski are the first Bulgarian figure skaters to medal at the World Figure Skating Championships.

Contents

Career

Albena Denkova with Maxim Staviski at the 2007 European Championships in Warsaw.

Denkova began her athletic career as a gymnast at the age of four, and switched to figure skating at about 8 or 9.[1] She took up ice dancing when she was 12.[1] Her first ice dance partner was Hristo Nikolov but they split up due to different ambitions.[1] In 1996, Denkova had a successful tryout with Maxim Staviski in Moscow and he moved to Sofia to compete with her for Bulgaria.[1] They soon became a couple off-ice, as well. In 2000, Denkova/Staviski began dividing their time between Sofia and Odintsovo, near Moscow, Russia where they worked with coach Alexei Gorshkov and choreographer Sergei Petukhov.[1][2]

Denkova and Staviski at the 2004 Worlds medal ceremony in Dortmund.

They withdrew from the 2000 European Championships after Staviski fell ill with pneumonia.[1] At the 2000 World Championships, Denkova was seriously injured in the practice before the free dance; Peter Tchernyshev's blade slashed her leg above her boot, severing two tendons and a muscle.[1] She eventually returned to training but suffered swelling in her leg. After she asked the U.S. Figure Skating Association if Tchernyshev had insurance to help cover her medical expenses, the organizers withdrew Denkova/Staviski's invitation to 2000 Skate America.[1] Both Denkova and Staviski fell ill with the flu before the 2001 European Championships and she suffered more swelling but they competed at the event and finished 8th, their best result to that date.[1]

After the 2005 World Championships, Denkova and Staviski parted ways with Gorshkov and moved to Delaware, U.S., to train with Natalia Linichuk and Gennadi Karponossov.[3] In October 2006, it was announced that Denkova had been elected President of the Bulgarian Skating Federation.[3][4]

On 5 August 2007, Maxim Staviski caused a car accident while driving drunk in Bulgaria that left 24-year-old Petar Petrov dead and Petrov's fiancee, 18-year-old Manuela Gorsova, in a coma.[5] In October 2007, he announced his retirement from competitive skating and Denkova was thus forced to retire, as well.[6]

In 2004, Denkova noted that Bulgaria did not have many skating facilities and coaches and said she and Staviski were considering opening a school.[2] Together, they now have a skating school in Sofia called SC Ice Dance Denkova/Staviski.[7] They continued to skate in shows around the world and have also done choreography, working with Brian Joubert in 2009.[4]

Personal life

Denkova and Staviski are engaged to marry.[8] Their son Daniel was born on January 30, 2011.[9] Denkova has a younger sister, Ina Demireva, who also competed in ice dancing.[10] Her brother-in-law is single skater Andrei Lutai.[11] Denkova holds a degree in economics from Sofia University.

Awards

On April 10, 2007, Denkova and Staviski were awarded the Stara Planina Order, the highest Bulgarian award.[12] On April 19, 2007, they received a star on Bulgaria's Walk of Fame.[13]

Programs

Season Original dance Free dance Exhibition
2006–2007
2005–2006
2004–2005
2003–2004
2002–2003
  • Afrah Baladi
    by Mostafa Sax
2001–2002
2000–2001
1999–2000
  • Speak up Mambo
  • Soledad
  • Give it up
1998–1999
1997–1998
  • Wolly-Bully
    by Domingo Samudio
1996–1997
  • El Choclo
    by Angel Villoldo

Competitive highlights

(with Staviski)

Event 1996–97 1997–98 1998–99 1999–00 2000–01 2001–02 2002–03 2003–04 2004–05 2005–06 2006–07
Winter Olympic Games 18th 7th 5th
World Championships 19th 17th 11th WD 10th 5th 3rd 2nd 5th 1st 1st
European Championships 17th 16th 9th WD 8th 6th 2nd 2nd WD 3rd
Bulgarian Championships 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st
Grand Prix Final 3rd 2nd 3rd 1st
Skate America 1st
Trophée Eric Bompard 4th 1st 2nd 1st
Cup of Russia 5th 3rd
NHK Trophy 6th 3rd 1st 1st 2nd
Skate Canada 5th 4th 2nd 1st
Bofrost Cup 6th 3rd 1st 1st
Finlandia Trophy 1st 1st 1st 1st 1st
Golden Spin of Zagreb 2nd
Karl Schäfer Memorial 1st
Nebelhorn Trophy 3rd
Skate Israel 2nd

WD: Withdrew

(with Hikolov)

Event 1992–93 1994–95 1993–94 1994–95
World Championships 21st 26th 27th 24th
European Championships 18th 22nd 26th 22nd
Bulgarian Championships 1st 1st

References

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Mittan, Barry (December 3, 2001). "Albena Denkova and Maxim Staviski: Bulgarian Dancers Triumph Over Injuries to Reach Top Ten". GoldenSkate.com. http://www.goldenskate.com/articles/2001/120301.shtml. Retrieved December 22, 2010. 
  2. ^ a b Slater, Paula (March 18, 2004). "Interview: Albena Denkova and Maxim Staviski". GoldenSkate.com. http://www.goldenskate.com/articles/2003/031804.shtml. Retrieved December 22, 2010. 
  3. ^ a b Motchane, Asli (2006). "Albena Denkova: "Now we enjoy every single practice!"". AbsoluteSkating.com. http://absoluteskating.com/index.php?cat=interviews&id=2006denkova. Retrieved February 7, 2011. 
  4. ^ a b Gazave, Romain (2009). "Albena Denkova & Maxim Staviski: Behind the Boards". AbsoluteSkating.com. http://absoluteskating.com/interviews/2009denkovastaviski.html. Retrieved December 22, 2010. 
  5. ^ "World skating champion from Bulgaria involved in car accident near Ropotamo River". The Sofia Echo. August 6, 2007. http://sofiaecho.com/article/world-skating-champion-from-bulgaria-involved-in-car-accident-near-ropotamo-river/id_24243/catid_66. Retrieved June 15, 2011. 
  6. ^ "Bulgaria's Maxim Staviiski ends his career". The Sofia Echo. October 18, 2007. http://sofiaecho.com/article/bulgarias-maxim-staviiski-ends-his-career/id_25556/catid_66. Retrieved June 15, 2011. 
  7. ^ Albena Denkova and Maxim Staviski at the International Skating Union
  8. ^ "World Skating Champions to Finally Tie the Knot". Novinite. March 23, 2007. http://www.novinite.com/view_news.php?id=78343. Retrieved June 15, 2011. 
  9. ^ Petrova, Ruslana (January 30, 2011). "Даниел изплака за Албена и Максим [Daniel born to Albena and Maxim]". Standart News. http://www.standartnews.com/lyubopitno-shou/daniel_izplaka_za_albena_i_maksim-92938.html. Retrieved June 15, 2011. 
  10. ^ Ina Demireva at the International Skating Union
  11. ^ "Сборная тропа хоро на сватба в София" (in Bulgarian). Standart News. April 18, 2010. http://paper.standartnews.com/bg/article.php?article=321529. Retrieved June 14, 2011. 
  12. ^ "Purvanov: Bulgaria's Denkova and Staviski have the potential to get Olympic gold". The Sofia Echo. April 10, 2007. http://sofiaecho.com/2007/04/10/651018_purvanov-bulgarias-denkova-and-staviski-have-the-potential-to-get-olympic-gold. Retrieved June 15, 2011. 
  13. ^ "Albena and Maxim Star Shining on Bulgaria's Walk of Fame". Novinite. April 19, 2007. http://www.novinite.com/view_news.php?id=79555. Retrieved June 15, 2011. 

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