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Fernandez trying to make skating popular in Spain

Skater looking to add quad to short program next season

Javier Fernandez performs his <i>Pirates of the Caribbean</i> free skate.
Javier Fernandez performs his Pirates of the Caribbean free skate. (Getty Images)

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By Vladislav Luchianov, special to icenetwork.com
(05/17/2011) - Javier Fernandez is putting Spain on the map.

The figure skating map that is. With a ninth place finish at the European Championships and a 10th at the 2011 World Championships -- Fernandez helped secure two spots for Spain next season at worlds.

Icenetwork.com chatted with the skater about his progress.

Icenetwork.com: Recently, a Spanish sports journalist said: "Now, people in the world know that Spanish sports is not only Real Madrid and Barcelona football clubs. We have Javier Fernandez!" Could you tell us how your successes on the ice is seen in Spain?

Javier Fernandez: Well, the television, newspapers and radios are really interested in ice skating right now. Skating still is not the most popular sport in Spain, and many people don't know that our country has skaters -- but there are much more of them than two years ago. Anyway, we are doing the best to make this sport one of the most popular here, in Spain. This sport has made big changes in this country in just a couple of years.

Icenetwork.com: What does your top-10 results at worlds mean for you?

Fernandez: That was my goal for this year and I'm really happy because the Spanish team is getting bigger every year. I hope we can continue growing up!

Icenetwork.com: You executed two quads in a free skate program at worlds. Will you add a quad to your short program next season?

Fernandez: Yeah, that's my first challenge for the next season, but we will see how the work will go on. Now it's early to say, but I think I will have a quad in my short program.

Icenetwork.com: How do you keep the balance in skating performance and components after performing something as physically demanding as a quad?

Fernandez: I think my strong point in skating are the jumps. Yes, it's true that you spend a lot of energy executing quads, but for me it's harder to do a triple triple combination than a quad. So, I can handle the program with two quads with no problems.

Icenetwork.com: How did you prepare your Jack Sparrow character for your Pirates of the Caribbean program?

Fernandez: Everybody has their 'character.' I think my 'character' is similar with Jack's (laughs). It was not hard trying to act like he does [in the movie], but sometimes it's hard to hold the step sequences trying not to fall, but with my ice work I learn how to do it!

Icenetwork.com: What would you like to portray in future programs?

Fernandez: I don't know. I don't have any idea for now but I will try different kinds of music. At the moment it's early to say about the final choice, but, of course, we have to decide what we are going to do for the next season.

Icenetwork.com: Your skating rink-mate Miki Ando is the world champion. What do you think about her success?

Fernandez: Well, it's great to have the great skaters like Miki around you in the ice rink. That makes you stronger because you want to be a world champion too. I'm so happy for her! She works hard and she got her gold medal.

Icenetwork.com: What are your goals for the next season?

Fernandez: My goals are adding the quad to a short program and to be in the top-five at the European championships next year. That's what I want right now, but I will see how much I will improve in my training next season.