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The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

Olena PavlovaSport
Figure skater Yuliia Lavrenchuk left Ukraine in the early 2000s.

The Ukrainian figure skater Yulia Lavrenchuk rose to prominence in the late 1990s when she earned a bronze medal at the European Championships. However, her fame waned quickly. She disappeared from the public eye in the early 2000s and re-emerged in Russia. In April 2023, she became embroiled in a scandal involving the assault of a child.

Lavrenchuk, born in 1978 in Kyiv, took her first steps on the ice in the Ukrainian capital. Coached by Maryna Amirkhanova, she developed a unique jumping technique characterized by a long stride and a "hover" in the air after reaching height. Throughout her program, Yuliia showcased remarkable speed on the ice.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko
The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

In 1995, Lavrenchuk achieved her first Ukrainian championship title, triumphing over Olena Lyashenko, a future European silver medalist and four-time Olympian. She repeated this success in 1997, marking the pinnacle of her career. During the European Championships, Yulia secured a bronze medal in addition to her national title by defeating the Russian skater Irina Slutskaya. Despite being fifth after the short program, the Ukrainian managed to boost her score during the free skate.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

In 1998, Lavrenchuk participated in the Nagano Olympics, falling just short of the top 10 with an 11th-place finish. Following that, Yulia continued to skate for one more season, securing an eighth-place finish at the continental championships and a ninth-place finish at the world championships. However, at the age of 21, she abruptly ended her career and soon departed from Ukraine.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

It is known that in the early 2000s, the Kyiv figure skater moved to Austria, where she worked as a coach. Not much is known about the former athlete's personal life at that time, but she managed to become a mother. And then she reappeared in the media, but in Russia.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

It turned out that Yulia married a coach from Russia, Alexei Vasilevsky, and settled in Moscow with him. Since 2017, she and her husband have been coaching Russian figure skaters at the Plushenko Angels. The couple then worked with children at the Figure Skating Army sports club.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

In 2023, Vasilevsky and Lavrenchuk opened their own school and began to receive students from their star mentor, Eteri Tutberidze, and from the school of Olympic champion Yevgeny Plushenko.

The coaching couple is also raising four children of their own—three children together and, according to Russian media, a daughter from Yulia's marriage in Austria, whose name is Emily Chesterton. And it was because of Emily and her intemperance that the former Ukrainian recently found herself at the epicenter of a scandal.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

In the spring of 2023, a video of Lavrenchuk beating a child appeared online. It turned out that this incident occurred back in 2018 and was recorded by cameras at the Plushenko Academy. The video shows Yulia practicing on the ice with her daughter Emily and repeatedly raising her hand to the girl while she was skating.

According to Elena Rodina, an independent figure skating expert and child advocate, Yulia trained with her daughter early in the morning "on a freebie" because she was the wife and assistant of coach Alexei Vasilevsky. Parents of other children from the academy repeatedly noticed Yulia's aggression on the ice and then complained to Yevgeny Plyushchenko.

Plyushchenko also confirmed that it was Yulia in the scandalous video, and he fired her after he learned about the incident with the hand-to-hand fighting: "As soon as I found out, there was a big review within the school. Dozens of parents came to complain about Lavrenchuk." And Vasilevsky, who covered up the cruel actions of his wife, lost his job.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

According to Plyushchenko, when she and Lavrenchuk parted ways, they had an agreement that she would leave Russia and never coach again. But instead, the disgraced coaches stayed in Moscow, opened their own figure skating school, and continue to work with children.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko
The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

Plyushchenko's wife, Yana Rudkovska, noted that figure skating training is always old school, a carrot and a stick: "It's a hard path that doesn't favor lazy people, and when it comes to ice, it doesn't forgive mistakes at all. But this doesn't mean that physical abuse of the child is allowed. To beat a five-year-old child who is standing on skates and trying to get away from you? This is something beyond the pale, something unthinkable."

 

Rudkovskaya and Plyushchenko became parents for the second time

"We kicked her out in the blink of an eye, and a second later she flew out into the street with a wolf's ticket, followed by her husband, Alexei Vasilevsky. We consulted with the parents and planned to involve the guardianship. Lavrenchuk promised everyone that she would leave. She swore and swore that she would never do coaching again because it was obviously contraindicated for her. She begged and cried," Rudkovska wrote in her Telegram channel.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

Yulia denied that she had beaten her daughter in a comment to Rodina, emphasizing that she had not seen any video. And when angry figure skating fans came to her social media and bombarded her with extremely unpleasant comments, the former Ukrainian was forced to close her Instagram page.

But just six months later, the passions around the coaching tandem subsided, and the new students and their successes attracted media attention to Lavrenchuk and Vasilevsky. In September, they even gave an interview in which they talked about their 9-year-old daughter.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

"I would like one of the children to become a figure skater. The middle one is a smart boy, so he is going to study. The twins are both quite coordinated; I would love them to get on the ice, but their dad is against it. My daughter used to skate with Eteri Tutberidze, but she has such a temper that I think even Eteri Georgievna could not break her. So we took her away from there, and she skates for herself in our group. Well, not skating but hanging around," Yulia told championat.com.

"No, she works on a par with everyone else; she just doesn't fully realize why she needs it and why so much is expected of her," explained Oleksiy.

The Ukrainian figure skater, Yuliia Lavrenchuk, residing in Russia, allegedly assaulted a child, causing upset, including Evgeni Plushenko

Earlier, OBOZ.UA told you where the Ukrainian vice-champion of Europe in figure skating disappeared to and what she is doing abroad.

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