Ajax figure skater heading to world championships in Japan
Katherine DeClerq, CTV News Toronto
Published Friday, March 15, 2019 8:29PM EDT
Last Updated Saturday, March 16, 2019 10:26AM EDT
After years of early success, a 20-year-old skater from Ajax was forced to rediscover his love of the sport after a growth-spurt threw him off balance.
Nam Nguyen is on his way to Japan to compete in the 2019 World Figure skating Championships after winning a gold medal at the Canadian championships this year.
“My goal there is to put up two great skates and then the results will follow afterwards,” he told CTV News Toronto.
Nguyen has been winning skating competitions since he was nine-years-old, but he didn’t always want to be a figure skater.
“I actually wanted to play hockey at first,” he said. “And then when I was five, my parents put me into figure skating classes to improve the skating skills for hockey.”
But Nguyen soon fell in love with the sport, preferring to jump and spin rather than chase a puck.
“It’s honestly the best feeling ever. If I ever have a bad day out of the rink and come here to skate, all my worries just go away.”
The last few years, however, Nguyen struggled. He told CTV News Toronto a growth spurt forced him to relearn many moves that he used to consider so natural.
“There have been times I wanted to quit and not continue anymore,” he said.
Nguyen said his coach guided him through the process and told him to rediscover his love for the sport.
“He had a hard time getting through the part where ‘I’m not as good as I was’ or ‘I don’t feel as good as I was,” said Robert Burk. “He has all the gifts and my job is to try to clear all the paths so he can just go ahead and do that.”
“Without these important people in my life I wouldn’t be where I am today,” Nguyen said.
The World Figure Skating Championships are set to take place on March 18-24 in Saitama, Japan.
With files from CTV News Toronto's Brandon Rowe