Sergey Kurdukov

Sergey Kurdukov

Commentator for the Eurosport TV channel
Date of Birth: 20.08.1968
Country: Russia

Content:
  1. Sergey Kurdyukov: A Biography
  2. The Impressive Season of Multiday Races
  3. The Controversial Contador Case
  4. Denis Menchov's Season
  5. The Restructuring of Cycling Teams
  6. Preparation for Commentaries
  7. Improvisation and Preparation
  8. The Art of Improvisation
  9. The Physical and Emotional Demands
  10. Seeing Athletes as Heroes
  11. Increasing Ratings and Interacting with Fans
  12. Criticism of "Team Katusha"
  13. Thoughts on "Team Katusha's" Season
  14. Valery Karpin's Potential in Cycling Management
  15. Unawareness of the "Spartak Moscow" Scandal

Sergey Kurdyukov: A Biography

Sergey Kurdyukov is a commentator for the TV channel "Eurosport" who is known for his meticulous and less popularized style of commentary. After a busy cycling summer, Kurdyukov is now preparing for emotional winter coverage. Sports.ru had a conversation with him to learn about his preparation process, the benefits of interacting with fans on Twitter, the need to criticize Dmitry Guberniev, and Valery Karpin's ability to manage a large cycling team.

The Impressive Season of Multiday Races

Kurdyukov expressed his admiration for the various multiday races that took place during the season. He mentioned that the Vuelta a España stood out in terms of drama, although it would be unfair to say it was the most eventful. Other races also had intense moments, with riders fighting for their lives and beautiful stages. Overall, this season's multiday races were the most impressive in recent years. One of the main topics of the season was the delay in resolving the "Contador case."

The Controversial Contador Case

When asked about the tension within the peloton regarding the Contador case, Kurdyukov stated that during the races, the riders did not constantly think about it. They focused on their work and did not speculate on the court's verdict. The constant postponement of the hearing added to the strange and foolish situation. However, there was no constant pressure on the riders. They were professionals who focused on their job.

Denis Menchov's Season

Kurdyukov shared his thoughts on Denis Menchov's season, stating that he had opportunities to compete for podium finishes, especially in the Vuelta a España. Menchov's early setbacks prevented him from reaching the podium, but he still had the potential to win under certain circumstances. Kurdyukov was grateful that Menchov was still in a good condition and age to think about the future instead of dwelling on past memories.

The Restructuring of Cycling Teams

With the disappearance of the American HTC team, the merger of two Belgian teams, and the union of RadioShack and Leopard Trek, Kurdyukov was asked if it was time for teams to create their own Champions League and stop relying on sponsors for funding. He stated that it would be a risky recipe that could lead to either colossal success or catastrophic failure. Moving towards self-sufficiency often leads to conflicts with the UCI. Instead of drastic movements, Kurdyukov believed that a more sophisticated system should be developed through dialogue and collaborative efforts. The breakups and mergers of strong teams were also reflections of the unstable economic situation worldwide.

Preparation for Commentaries

Kurdyukov revealed that his preparation time for commentaries is approximately the same as the duration of the actual broadcast, sometimes even longer. Not everything he prepares is used, but he believes it is important to be aware of everything happening in order to understand the context. Some moments require analysis, while others require comparison with the thoughts of his colleagues. He aims to paint a vivid picture of the rider who gives reason to talk about themselves. It is not just about gathering facts but existing within the rhythm of the race.

Improvisation and Preparation

When asked if it is possible to perform well in a multiday race without preparation, Kurdyukov acknowledged that it is possible but not as interesting. Journalism is based on curiosity, and he wants to have a story for each commentary to keep the audience engaged. While it is possible to rely on previous knowledge and current results, Kurdyukov believes that it would be unfair to himself to slack off. He wants to continue developing and not just work for the audience but also for his own satisfaction.

The Art of Improvisation

Kurdyukov stated that he constantly improvises during live broadcasts, as it is part of the job. Many prepared materials remain unused depending on how the race unfolds. He emphasized that improvisation is a crucial aspect of live commentary. However, he also acknowledged that a significant amount of prepared material goes unused.

The Physical and Emotional Demands

Kurdyukov admitted that commentating in big races can be physically and emotionally tiring. The long duration of races and the strain on his voice can be challenging. He emphasized that the physical and emotional demands of commentating are incomparable to what the cyclists experience. However, the demands of super multiday races are the most significant for commentators. Some races, like the World Championships, can be especially demanding.

Seeing Athletes as Heroes

Kurdyukov explained that he portrays almost all cyclists as heroes because he sees them as such. He empathizes with their hard work and short professional careers, understanding that leaving a lasting legacy in the history of the sport is difficult. He believes he does not have the right to be a cold judge. He wants to celebrate the athletes and their achievements, respecting the effort they put into their craft.

Increasing Ratings and Interacting with Fans

Kurdyukov stated that the ratings for cycling on his channel have increased over the years. The audience's geographic reach and activity have expanded, and the feedback from fans confirms this positive trend. In a world full of various forms of entertainment, he sees this as a good sign. He aims to continue working hard to sustain this growth.

Kurdyukov also interacts with fans on Twitter. He enjoys the dialogue and the real-time contact he has with the audience. It allows him to understand their preferences and provides an additional emotional background. However, he admits that there can be trolling and banal comments on social media platforms.

Criticism of "Team Katusha"

Fans have criticized Kurdyukov for not criticizing the Russian cycling team "Katusha," whose season did not go as well as expected. In response, Kurdyukov explained that his style of commentary does not involve lengthy criticism and digging into problems. His genre is more focused on presenting sports as a spectacle. He plays his part in creating an engaging experience for viewers, allowing them to cheer for their favorites. While he may express his opinions on certain issues, he prefers to praise those who deserve it. He respects all athletes on any sports track because he understands their hard work.

Thoughts on "Team Katusha's" Season

Regarding "Team Katusha's" season, Kurdyukov believed it was an experiment that was premature. The Russian team's composition might not have been well-balanced for the Tour de France. He mentioned that the new core of Russian cycling has not fully formed yet, as young talent is still developing. The decision to field a primarily Russian lineup in the Tour de France was a leap that didn't go as planned. However, the team performed well in races with a more balanced composition, such as the Vuelta a España, where they had more achievable ambitions.

Valery Karpin's Potential in Cycling Management

During a stage of the Vuelta a España, Kurdyukov mentioned Valery Karpin, the head coach and general director of football club "Spartak Moscow." He stated that Karpin is well-regarded by Spanish fans, and when asked if he would like to see Karpin work as a manager in Russian cycling, Kurdyukov jokingly said that it would be up to Karpin to decide. He believed that Karpin is currently focused on his football career, but he welcomed collaboration between different sports worlds.

Unawareness of the "Spartak Moscow" Scandal

When asked if he discussed the well-known incident during the "Spartak Moscow" - CSKA Moscow match with his colleague Dmitry Guberniev, Kurdyukov revealed that he was completely unaware of the situation. He had been busy working and was not up to date with the news. He only found out about it when the media reached out to him for comments. Kurdyukov found it amusing that he was unaware of such a significant event. He believed that discussing it with Guberniev would have been redundant. Kurdyukov expressed surprise at the massive media coverage of the incident, considering that there are more pressing global issues that receive minimal attention. He criticized the saturation of trivial scandals instead of focusing on more important matters.

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