x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 22 February 2018

K-pop fan Evgenia Medvedeva listened to Exo before setting new skating record

The 18-year-old set a new record for points in the short programme and credits listening to one of her favourite K-pop boy bands for helping her 

Russian figure skater Evgenia Medvedeva is a massive K-pop fan. Getty
Russian figure skater Evgenia Medvedeva is a massive K-pop fan. Getty

For Evgenia Medvedeva, it's all about the music.

Not so much the Chopin nocturne to which the Russian figure skater broke her own world mark on Sunday, but the South Korean pop music in her headphones beforehand.

A devoted fan of K-pop, Medvedeva listened to boy-band Exo before her stunning short programme at the Gangneung Ice Arena which gave her 81.06 points. The landings on her jumps were feather-light and the spins elegant.

The 18-year-old Medvedeva said she has autographs and letters from the members of Exo, a South Korean-Chinese group with a vast following among teenage girls.

"It's unreal inspiration and it really improved my mood," she said. "I feel more confident because of them."

Watch a video below of her performing to Exo's Lotto:

That huge skate came after a tough season for Medvedeva, who broke a bone in her foot in the fall and struggled to recover in time for the Olympics. Last month, her two-year unbeaten run ended with a second-place finish at the European championships behind training partner Alina Zagitova.

Medvedeva didn't know for certain she would be going to the Olympics until late last month — not because of injury, but because of Russia's doping scandals. She was picked to represent Russia in front of the International Olympic Committee in December, ahead of a key ruling which opted against a blanket ban but allowed Russians to compete on an invite-only basis.

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Read more:

Winter Olympics open with show of Korean unity

Distinct style of K-pop to echo in Olympic Spotlight

Could a North Korean singer usher in detente with the South?

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