Passion, sincerity, character… Standing on the right hand side of Korea’s throne, a tight-knit team

Posted Posted onApril 16, 2023 Comments0

I keep saying I’m proud of the Korean team, but it’s not just about the result (silver medal). My teammates really enjoyed skating and I was very happy about that. They were totally into this event.”

Cha Jun-hwan (22, Korea University), captain of the Korean national figure skating team, praised the enthusiasm of his teammates throughout the World Team Trophy, a national team event. They poured blood, sweat and tears on the ice and achieved results beyond expectations. Korea, which participated in the International Skating Union (ISU) Figure Skating World Team Trophy for the first time, climbed to the second highest spot on the podium.

Cha Jun-hwan Lee Si-hyung (23, Korea University, Lee Sang-sang male single) Kim Ye-rim (20, Dankook University) Lee Hae-in (18, Sehwa Girls’ High School, Lee Sang-sang female single) Ice Dance Lim Hae-na (18)-Quan-ye (22, Canada, Lee Sang-gyunggi general) Pair Jo Hye-jin ( 18) -The Korean figure skating team, composed of Stephen Adcock (27, Canada), won the silver medal with a total score of 95 at the 2023 ISU World Team Trophy, which ended at Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium in Japan on the 15th.

With 120 points, the USA won the championship. It was the 5th top finish, the most in the competition. South Korea, with 95 points, placed second, while Japan, the host country and favorite to win, ranked third with 94 points.

In the 2022-2023 season, Korea ranked 4th in the ISU season national rankings and secured the right to participate in the team trophy given up to 6th. In the meantime, Korea has not been able to participate in this event due to a lack of players in mixed events (pairs, ice dance). However, Junior World Championships silver medalist Lim Haena-Quan Yejo made her senior debut in the Team Trophy. In addition, the Jo Hye-jin-Adcok group, which was formed in May of last year, joined the team and met the conditions to compete in the team trophy.

Korea, which challenged the team trophy for the first time, had a bronze medal as their biggest goal. It was believed that Japan and the United States would compete for the championship, and Korea would compete fiercely with Italy, France and Canada for third place until the final day of the tournament.

However, Korea won the silver medal in the first team trophy. In particular, it overtook Japan, which ranked first in the national rankings this season, by one point. The unimaginable has become a reality.

Team Korea with the youngest average age, falling into ‘fun’ leads to ‘results’

Korea had the youngest average age among the 6 participating countries. South Korea, whose average age is 20 years old, emptied her mind before the competition, saying, “Let’s ride happily.” From the first day of the competition, they were united by trust in each other and passion for skating, and they received reports that exceeded expectations.

The protagonists of the team trophy silver medal were definitely Cha Jun-hwan and Lee Hae-in. Those who won silver medals in men’s and women’s singles at this year’s World Championships also poured their energy into the ice at the team trophy.

In particular, Lee Hae-in took first place in both the women’s single short program and free skating. He gave Team Korea 12 points, which are tied for first place in the short and free. Lee Hae-in, who scored 24 points alone, also changed her personal best score in the short and free.

Since the team trophy is not an individual event, the total score of the short and free is not reflected in the tournament performance. However, as it is an ISU-sanctioned event, it is recognized as an official score. Lee Hae-in scored 76.9 points in the short program and 148.57 points in the free skate. The total score of 225.47 points, which is the sum of these points토스카지노, is the highest female singles record this season.

Also, the resurrection of ‘Figure Skating General’ Kim Ye-rim also helped. He participated in nine international competitions this season and won three gold medals, two silver medals, and one bronze medal. However, he performed poorly at the World Championships last month, finishing 18th. It seemed that the tower he had worked so hard on throughout the season would collapse in an instant.

Kim Ye-rim recovered the skills he showed at the beginning of the season in his free skating. Receiving his personal best score of 143.59, he moved into third place and burst into tears on the ice.

Cha Jun-hwan in men’s singles also poured in all his strength at the team trophy as well as at the world championships. He broke the 100 mark for the first time in the short program and received his personal best score (101.33).

In the men’s single free skating held on the 15th, the last day of the competition, Cha Jun-hwan’s shoulders were not light. This is because the color of the medal could change depending on his performance. However, Cha Jun-hwan showed concentration worthy of a ‘strong heart’ and took first place in the free skating with 187.82 points. Cha Jun-hwan added 12 points, bringing Korea’s total to 95 points. It was the moment that completed a thrilling come-from-behind drama against Japan, which scored 94 points.

Haina Lim-Quanye of Ice Dance prepared a program suitable for the senior competition in a short time and entered this competition. Due to the nature of the event, there is a large gap between juniors and seniors in ice dancing. In both the rhythm dance and free dance, she placed 6th out of 6 groups, but in the free dance, she scored the highest score of 109.27.

The pair’s Hyejin Cho-Adcock Cho made her international competition debut in her team’s trophy. After participating in the National Championships in January, they made a successful debut in international competitions.

‘Figure skating powerhouse’ Korea beat Japan, the remaining task is to strengthen mixed events.

Throughout the competition, the Korean team entertained the spectators with interesting performances and cheering methods. As an individual sport, figure skating offers fewer opportunities to socialize with peers. Because of the characteristics of always practicing according to one’s schedule and training in a different way, there was an ‘invisible wall’ in relationships with colleagues.

However, after the first training camp in Jincheon National Training Center in North Chungcheong Province in August of last year, their relationship disappeared. In addition, most of the players have upright personalities and sincerity, and their ‘respect’ towards each other was completed with strong teamwork.

Lee Si-hyeong said, “I trained at the Jincheon National Training Center for a month, and during that time, there was a lot of individual training due to the nature of the event. However, I also learned cooperation and teamwork with my colleagues.”

Kim Ye-rim also expressed her gratitude to her colleagues, saying, “(Figure skating) is an individual event, but I was grateful to the other athletes because I trained at the camp and went to many competitions together.”

Most of the players currently wearing the Taegeuk mark are terrible ‘practice worms’. Not only do they train diligently all the time, but they also receive compliments from the people around them saying that “everyone is nice”.

After the most important world championships, most athletes feel relaxed. Also, it’s hard physically because I played a long season. There have always been players who did not do their best in the team trophy, which has a strong event nature.

However, ‘Team Korea’, armed with passion for skating, sincerity, and strong mentality, poured all their sweat and tears into the team trophy. As a result, six personal best scores poured in.

South Korea, which has emerged as a figure skating powerhouse, remains as a task to ‘strengthen mixed events’. In preparation for the 2026 Milan-Cortina d’Ampezzo Winter Olympics, the naturalization of ice dancers Quan Ye and Pair Adcock is desperately needed.

In ice dance, besides Im Hae-na and Quan-ye, Jini Kim (16, Gumi Middle School) and Inamu Inu (16, Seong Seong-middle) are also active. However, the reality is that there is no team other than them.

Ice dance and pairs require long-term time and investment as the breathing of the two players is important. It is not easy to nurture mixed sports when you look at the poor player base in Korea. However, the development of mixed sports is very important when considering the team trophy and the Olympics two years later.

Meanwhile, the Korean athletes who finished this tournament will return to Korea via Gimpo International Airport on the afternoon of the 17th after appearing at the gala show on the 16th. This time, male and female singles players as well as Lim Hae-na-Quanye Joe and Cho Hye-jin are expected to return home.


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