The 2013 World Figure Skating Championships in Canada was crucial to countries securing places at the Olympics – which you managed for Ukraine. Tell us a little about that championship.
We knew at this championship places to the Sochi Olympics would be awarded so it became twice as important for me to perform well. I’m glad we managed to get 14th place there as it allowed us to bring the qualification back home.
The fact you’ve won qualification for Ukraine doesn’t necessarily grant you the right to go to the Olympics as the final decision will be made at the Ukrainian Championships. What do you think your chances are?
Everyone has a chance, but we are sure we have the strength to win. At last year’s championship there were few couples, only three, and it meant there was almost no competition. However this year the championship is open, meaning there will be competitors from other countries – it means even more intense training for us.
Assuming you make it, how do you rate your chances? Who’s your biggest competitor?
All contestants are competitors. We need to give it our all, 200%, and then our results will be much better than expected. I would really like to repeat the achievement of Ukrianians Olena Hrushina and Ruslan Honcharov who brought home the bronze from the Olympic Games in 2006.
Talking about awards, what’s the most important to you?
All of them are important as they are the result of hard work, however I’m sure the most important is still ahead.
Is winning titles what motivates you to victory?
The wish to express myself is what motivates me to strive for victory. I want to prove I am the strongest and worthy of being number one. Of course, the support of friends, relatives and my wife Irochka inspires me a lot.
Does your coach motivate you?
Of course! My coach is my mentor! For three seasons we’ve been working with Galit Chait-Moracci and Oleksiy Horshkov and starting this year, Canadian Tyler Myles joined our team.
Wow, that’s a group of big names! What does your training consist of?
We train six days a week, twice a day on ice. Then off the ice we have to work on technical elements and choreography. The hardest thing is a step sequence as judges usually pay a lot of attention to them. We are looking for clean moves and turns. I wake up at 6.45 everyday as training starts at 8 and although I’m back home at 16.00, which seems pretty early, I’m so exhausted that I spend the rest of the day in, let’s just say, relaxation mode.
How many years have you been living with this kind of work schedule?
Well, I think pretty much from my first big break (in 2000 Dun and his partner won bronze at a tournament in Estonia) starting from then on my hobby turned into something more important.
by Vadym Mishkoriz