Terry Livingstone -The Interview

  Interview with Terry Livingstone

What were the dates you were gone in Austria at the Special Olympics Winter Championships? How many people did Team Canada send to this competition in Speed Skating?

“I flew to Toronto -March 12th, 2017. We flew to Austria March 13th, 2017. We were gone for 13 days. We sent a team of 10 skaters featuring 5 males, 5 females”.

What distances did you skate in?

“I skated in the 777m & 500m”.

How did finish in each distance you skated in?

“I took home a gold medal in the 777m distance finishing first beating out a skater from the Netherlands in the final. In the 500m distance I finished 4th finishing behind a skater from the Netherlands, Poland and one from South Korea.”

What was your proudest moment from the competition?

“It was competing on the world stage, representing my country with other skaters from different countries that I have never seen before.”

“It was an honor to wear the maple leaf, representing Canada and Saskatchewan. I share the goal medal I won with the coaches that trained me. This was the first goal medal and the highlight of my skating career. I had a tear in my eye on podium. It was a proud moment to listen to the Canadian National Anthem.”

Tell me a little bit about your experience in Austria off the ice?

“We went sightseeing, we went to the town square were there was live music every day. I was trying unsuccessfully to speak their language. We went to this restaurant that was on top of a mountain that you could hike up or take a cable car.”

“We met Arnold Schwarzenegger. He took us to visit his wax museum. There was memorabilia from his days as a body builder and a movie star! That was really cool.”

“We also went to the Austrian military academy. We saw solders; saw some of the old war guns and uniforms. It was cool to see solders. We visited the chapel there were there was a tomb of Frederic the Third.”

“The streets were a lot narrower than back home. I saw only little cars, no trucks. There were a lot of bikes and scooters as well. Another difference was that there was no sales tax. The food was reasonably priced; I was surprised there was no tax on items.”

Were there any funny moments during the competition on or off the ice?

“There were no funny moments; the coaches had the team focused on our business at the competition. We actually helped other countries sharpen skates because they did not know how to do it properly.”

How was the coaching at the competition?

“The coaching was good. We had three coaches, one was from B.C., one was from New Brunswick and the other was from Nova Scotia.”

“They used electronic timing at the competition, which I was used to from back home. You can watch the race on the screen at the arena and the results are posted instantly. It was Olympic size ice. The venue was great.”

How was the food in Austria? How were the accommodations?

“The food was good; there was a lot of chicken, rice and pasta. The accommodations were good. The hotel was smaller than I am used to. The rooms were a bit smaller. There was a single bed. I shared a room with a male figure skater from our team.”

What will you take back from Austria that you can apply to Speed Skating career down the road?

“We learned from an American Speed Skater. He taught us how to pivot around the apex. He also showed us how to run your fingers around the inside of the ice on corners. Although, I never do that! I coach once told me that is a good way to get your fingers chopped off!”

What are your future goals in Speed Skating?

“I have no future goals in speed skating. I am going to get back to training over the summer.”

Is there anything else you would like to talk about that we have not covered?

“It was different skating on the Olympic size ice. The mats seem far away. The Starting was different. We stood closer to the start line rather than standing at the blue line then coming up. Once they say “ready” they start right away rather than waiting for a second and a half. When they say “ready” everyone is already in their starting position. Another difference is we take our helmets off on the ice in the finals like they do in the Olympics, to recognize the athletes. Then we put the helmets back on to race!”

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