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 The tears she shed; a step toward the future: Mao Asada, after appearing on her dream stage

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PostSubject: The tears she shed; a step toward the future: Mao Asada, after appearing on her dream stage   Wed Mar 03, 2010 1:15 pm

The tears she shed; a step toward the future: Mao Asada, after appearing on her dream stage

- Source, A Japanese media translated interview by 'Batsuchan' @ FSU

Ladies figure skating silver medalist Mao Asada (Chuukyou University) answered questions on the closing day of the competition, the 28th (March 1st in Japan). After being barred from the Olympics four years ago due to the age limit, she finally arrived on her dream stage. What did she think? What did she feel? And what about four years from now? We discovered the 19-year olds true self.

--What do you think about the silver medal?

Im 50% happy and 50% bitter. The day after the competition, I thought of it as a step toward the future.

--You looked really upset right after your performance and on the podium.

It was right after the competition, so I did feel upset, but I saw so many people cheering, and I could see many Japanese flags, so I was moved.

--Why were you upset?

It was because of those last two jumps in my free program. Up until that point, it was my best performance of the season, so that made it even more upsetting.

--Were you surprised by those mistakes on the flip and toe loop?

After all, theyre easy compared to the axel. I still make mistakes on the flip sometimes, but never on the toe loop, so that was completely unexpected. My mind wavered at the end, and it translated into mistakes. I had been thinking, I could get a big score here. I think that in the future I will be able to think of this as a good experience, but you cant take back whats been done. If I had landed all my jumps, I think my score would have been even higher. But I did think it would have been nice to get a little more GOE for the triple axel. I wanted to see the score I could get if I did everything perfectly.

--What do you think you are lacking?

The artistic side is also important, but I think for me, its on the technical side. If you dont complete the jumps, you cant move up. Yu-Na Kim is at the top because shes doing a triple-triple combo and other difficult skills. To increase the base value more, I want to practice the other jumps.

--This season you didnt do the lutz or the salchow.

Tarasova-sensei told me to go practice them right away.

--You also want to include a triple-triple combo?

Thats right. Ive been practicing it.

--Why didnt you do a triple-triple combo this season?

It is extremely difficult for me to do two triple axels and a triple-triple combo in one program. So I chose a jump layout that I could do with more certainty. Until the Sochi Olympics, Ill try all kinds of things, and I want to do them in competition.

--Yu-Na Kim might retire after this season.

I do think I would like to beat her one more time. I want to compete together one more time, and I want to win properly.

--Do you think the difficult jumps should receive higher scores?

Under the new scoring system, I think everyones jump level has declined one level. But, Plushenko has come back, and people have started thinking that the quad is necessary, so because of that, I think it will change a little.

--Were the Olympics different from other competitions?

When I was competing, it was not different at all. A lot of people told me that the atmosphere at the Olympics is different, so I prepared for that when I practiced. Thats why, even in the actual competition, I was able to compete without any more nervousness than usual.

--But you said it was a stage that was beyond your imagination.

The scale was. When I entered the athletes village, I thought it was a special stage. Speed skaters, skiers, people from all over the world were gathered in the athletes village and in the auditoriums, and everyone was trying their best for a medal. By seeing the greatness of that scale, I felt like I was at the Olympics.

--Was this Olympics the grand finale, or just a stepping stone?

At first I thought it would be the grand finale of my journey from when I was little. While practicing and when I was at home, I thought, I want to win the gold medal. But now that its over, I feel like it is a step toward the future.

--Your thoughts about the gold medal have become stronger.

I have always felt very strongly that I want one. Even now that feeling is the same. But, as Sochi approaches, that feeling will probably be even stronger. Its four years until Sochi, but they will probably pass in a flash, and I hope I can head toward the Olympics while incorporating new things. I wont call Sochi my goal, but rather, I will think of it as another checkpoint, another step.

--Then the Olympics 8 years from now?

Ill be 27 years old? Ill have to think about that. But if I want to do it, I probably could.

--How are you preparing for next season?

I havent clearly decided yet. Tarasova-sensei is busy in Russia, and there is her health. This season there were times when we couldnt meet, but I still dont know for sure yet.

--There were times when you couldnt train with Coach Tarasova.

There were times when I wanted her to look at things on the artistic side, but she had health problems and work-related things. I could have gone [to Russia], but I wanted to train in Japan, and even if I went [to Russia] right before [the Olympics], I felt like I might ruin my condition.

--What kind of relationship would you like to maintain with Tarasova?

As soon as I switched to Tarasova, I started getting good scores for the step sequences, and she brought out different sides of me. Shes a teacher with lots of experience, and I think I can still learn a lot from her. Its difficult to train with her all year long, but Id like to do short-term training with her.

--What about your programs?

In the past two seasons, I used powerful music, so I want to choose calmer music, music that has some space for me to relax.

--In these past four years, what was the most painful thing?

After the Cup of Russia last year. My jumps were so messed up that even I was shocked. Even after I realized that and kept practicing, I couldnt do them, so that period was the most difficult. I worried if I would be able to go to the Olympics, if I would make it in time.

--If you think back on that period, then this result is really amazing.

Theres part of me thats glad and part of me thats upset. I had practiced 150% and up until that point [in my program], I had done everything perfectly, so really those last two jumps were so upsetting.

--What made you happiest over these past 4 years?

These Olympics. In the end, Im glad I was able to win this medal, and now Im glad that I tried so hard.

--How do you want to pass the time until the Sochi Olympics?

At college, I want to take the required classes and study hard. [I want to take] psychology. In aiming for the Olympics, Ive only focused on skating, so Id like to try marathoning and yoga and pilates. I say marathoning, but not the real thing. I also want to be fashionable.

--And love?

Id like to fall in love too.

--With whom?

Ill have to find someone. My ideal is a good-looking guy. Someone cool.

--If you fall in love, your range of expression will improve.

Yes. Tarasova-sensei gave me that advice.

--At the time of the Sochi Olympics, youll be 23 years old. What kind of person do you think youll be?

I think Ill be the same, probably. Machiko (Yamada)-sensei often told me, be a skater that everyone cheers for, and thats what I want to continue to aim to do.

--What are thoughts about your mother, who has always supported you?

From when [I started skating when] I was 5, she did everything for me, so Im glad I was able to win the silver medal. I hung it around her neck.

--What did your mother say?

Good job. She said, You were able to skate here, so Im glad.



The Mao-rashiku article basically paraphrases the interview above, but theres one part that was not paraphrased, so Ill translate:

About the triple axel, I thought it would have been nice if I got higher GOEs. In the judging system, what I am most concerned about is the basis for GOEs. Which jumps give you +3, and which give you +1? Figure skating is not a race where the time is clearly recorded, its a competition that people judge, so I dont really understand the basis for the GOEs. After I go back to Japan, I want to ask the judges about it.

Finally, this article has one more Q&A that was not in the first article.

V:⃁_Xgc^ɕ*:oN[o[ܗ(CHUNICHI Web)

--You think it would be better to assert yourself more.

But, in the end, I make the decisions. Such as choosing to train in Japan before the Olympics, even though Sensei said I should go to Vancouver one month before the competition. She also suggested that I not go to the athletes village. But I decided everything myself.

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PostSubject: Re: The tears she shed; a step toward the future: Mao Asada, after appearing on her dream stage   Mon Mar 08, 2010 7:15 pm

I saw her participation in Vancouver...
and she broke my heart (u)
I know that she is going to do a great job next season (:
about calmer music sounds perfect ♥
and boys ;D hahaha! that was cute *-*
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The tears she shed; a step toward the future: Mao Asada, after appearing on her dream stage
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