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deep interview of Patrick Chan and short one which mentions Lambiel and Yuna Kim

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by luCN, Aug 31, 2011.

  1. luCN

    luCN New Member

    you can see it here(six part,half an hour total,in English):

    print version in Chinese:http://sports.nen.com.cn/sports/9/3932009.shtml

    It's a famous show on Phoenix Satellite TV(HK,China) for 8 years,well,something like Today show.They always interview government officials、writters、directors、actors etc...so it's a little different with other sports interviews. :p Patrick talked about skating and other personal things,maybe you would like to see it. :hat1:

    PS:universal sports posted a short interview too:
    if you can't watch Universal sports video,you can see it on youtube:

    He mentioned Stephane Lambiel and Yuna Kim :hat1:
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2011
  2. os168

    os168 Active Member

    Really good interview, thanks for sharing. I really like and appreciate Patrick Chan even more now. The interviewer also spoke that she once interviewed Michelle Kwan too, I'd love to check out that interview if it can be found somewhere. (Ahh found it http://v.ifeng.com/e/200905/3cb96113-b55c-479e-930e-7054c3021e85.shtml)

    Some Highlights including

    - Patrick Chan speak Mandarin (too cute and giggle worthy)

    - Patrick thought $40k a year Colorado university was too expensive and
    decide to forgo Uni for now. Interviewer was surprised he was not offered a scholarship even as a world champion (Has other figure skaters got scholarships in the past because of skating? e.g Flatt, Alyssa etc?)

    - He got good sporting genes. His dad emigrated from Hongkong at age 4, and was the Qubec Table Tennis Champion. His mum came from China came to Canada at age 20, certified coach for tennis and skiing, and was still playing tennis at 8th month pregnancy with Patrick. (!)

    - Difference between Patrick and Chinese Athlete training environment were highlighted, such as the training mentality, pressure etc. In China, it is very much a job, work hard, full of pain and tears (interviewer jokingly implied) and the coaches are just like parents, the country provide everything.

    Patrick mentioned the importance of having fun but hard work too, his financial pressures include

    - USD $150k-200k generally for training costs for preparing for Vancouver while training in US
    - USD $250k for coaching
    (amount corrected thanks to skatingfanfun)

    Massive financial burden. Although Canadian government tries to help include some commercial interest, fundraiser they were able to support about 10% of training costs. Everything else is up to the family, as a result, Patrick became mature quickly and learnt to save money. Once he even took the bus to save money after a flight to a press conference, and he was almost late.

    - He mentioned he relies on fundraising raising by family and friends (a group) to support his skating, like a fund raising event in a Chinese restaurants on Sept 9th when he goes back to Toronto. It is in the form of a silent auction where they sell tables, each ticket is $130 Canadian Dollars, or you can buy a whole table, or be a title sponsor is $10k.

    - Leading to the Olympics, things were good when the interest was there, after the Olympics, it was difficult for a lot of athlete because the money / budget is just not there from many past sponsors. He mentioned he has only 1 sponsor left.

    I had no idea how strapped for cash he is, incredible really. It is really nice to see the Canadian / Chinese Community really support him to eventually become the world champion.

    - Patrick's parents were credit for their incredible support. His mother quit her job and stood by his side through the highs and lows and was a source of comfort and mental strength when he had difficulties. His father is an accountant, and although have decent salary but is hardly enough to support this expensive sport, and the family appears to be still in debt to support their son.

    - A very touching comment from the interviews was that Patrick's parent are not 'Tiger Mums' or 'Tiger Dads'. Quite opposite actually. Patrick's mum often quipped "you are the luckiest Chinese boy in Canada" and always tell him just be above average, and she'd be fine with it.

    - He took piano and ballet when he was young to develop musicality and movement.

    - He is taking economics and business subjects for all sort of reasons, but more so for a good financially stabled future. He mentioned it is good to have complete and balanced skill set.

    - The interviewer confirmed Patrick admit to her he took up skating shows to ensure he has enough funding for next year, and the show in China is the first one he has done in China/Taiwan. The interviewer mentioned she was still able to see how devoted Patrick was to 100% devoted and committed in his performance. It was the first time the interviewer managed to see his performing live, and she commented it was so different from the combative competition environment and really made figure skating beautiful.

    - The interviewer made a thoughtful conclusion from the interview. She couldn't help but to speculate that although the sporting strategy in China can guarantee they select only the very best athlete, and guarantee them focus entirely on the gold and silver, even though Patrick Chan's path appears to be more difficult and even stressful, but during the entire abstract process, a young man full potential and capability were tried and tested from all sides.

    Having experienced and endured through all this, his world is bigger and wider. And in his professional and life's journey would be travelled longer and further.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2011
  3. VarBar

    VarBar Well-Known Member

    I always liked Patrick Chan's skating (even when he was doing only triple jumps lol) for its incredibly gorgeous quality and now I think I am starting to really like Patrick as a person too.

    That's a very nice, sincere and articulate interview. Thanks luCN and os168.:)
  4. ali_dorate

    ali_dorate Active Member

    Thank you so much, luCN and os168.

    This is a very thoughtful interview.
    I love his positive thinking.
    At the same time, it sounds a little sad because he had been talking about studying at university from this autumn.

    I also can't understand why he can't get a scholarship.
    Hope his fundraising works well.
  5. l'etoile

    l'etoile New Member

    Wow amazing interview! I too didn't know Patrick was going through such difficulties both financially and physically. To see this very talented, humble guy grow as a skater for the last few seasons was incredible. I only wish the best of future for him.

    Thanks for the info & translation luCN and os168. Really enjoyed them:)
  6. luckiest1

    luckiest1 Well-Known Member

    Thank you so much for translating the intervew for us!
  7. attyfan

    attyfan Well-Known Member

    Thank you again for translating the interviews. How long has Patrick been in Colorado? Does he maintain legal residency there? If the 40K for a Colorado university is out-of-state tuition, it may drop after a while. I'm not surprised that the college won't give him a scholarship ... all US schools are cutting the financial aid. Of course, postponing college may prove to be a blessing in disguise. As Michelle Kwan demonstrated, combining college and top level competitive skating is extremely difficult.
  8. Dragonlady

    Dragonlady Sew Happy

    I think Patrick experienced "sticker shock" at the cost of tuition at an American university. $40,000 will get you a 4 year degree from the University of Toronto, as opposed to paying for your first year in Colorado. U of T is one of the top Universities in Canada and ranks 29th in the list of the 100 best universities in the World. Colorado didn't even make the list.

    I can understand why he would decide to defer his first year until he returns to Canada and much lower tuition costs.
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2011
  9. marbri

    marbri Hey, Kool-Aid!

    Weird thing is that while watching his longer interview and seeing the clips of him skating it popped into my head that he´d be a good partner for Vanessa Crone. Fast forward to the youtube video where he mentions Lambiel (completely agree with him there) and YuNa and he casually mentions how skating in the YuNa show peaked his interest in ice dance and I :lol: I could totally seeing him, once he accomplishes what he wants in singles, giving ice dance a shot and having some success.
  10. agalisgv

    agalisgv Well-Known Member

    Generally intl students don't qualify for in-state tuition or financial aid/scholarships no matter how long they reside in a particular state, so they will pay full-price for the entirety of their studies.
  11. Vagabond

    Vagabond Well-Known Member

    No. In the U.S., athletic scholarships are for sports in which colleges and universities compete against each other, e.g., swimming and basketball, not for skating.

    It would be very difficult for Chan to attend the University of Colorado right now in any event because Colorado Springs (where he trains) and Boulder (home of the University) are about a two-hour drive from each other.
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2011
  12. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I <3 Kozuka

    Thank you luCN for the link to the interview!

    And the rest of the scholarships are financial need-based, and I don't think many take individual sport, music, etc. training costs into consideration.

    Apart from shows, in his last three competitive seasons, he would have made:

    2009 -- Total of $80K plus a cut of the WTT 150K
    *Two firsts in GP (18+18)
    *Fifth at GPF (2)
    *First at 4C's (15)
    *Fourth at World Team Trophy (four singles, one pair, one dance split $150K)
    *Second at Worlds (27)

    2010-Total $27K
    *Sixth at GP (0)
    *Second at Worlds (27)

    I don't know if/which Olympic team athletes were given any kind of support or bonus from SC and/or NOC

    2011-Total $94K
    *First at GP (18)
    *Second at GP (13)
    *First at GPF (18)
    *First at Worlds (45)

    There shouldn't be any tax consequences anywhere for income above his expenses, and as far as I know, prize money is not subject to FICA.

    Aside from any Olympic-related subsidies, he had a bad year financially in 2010; with his injury, he was out of GP and GPF, although he wouldn't have been at 4C's so close to the Olympics in any case.

    He mentioned $40-$45K annually in coaching and training costs, but if he still needs to raise money bringing in $95K/year, and he's not even part of a couple, training costs are either even more exorbitant than I realized, or some of what he's earning in prize money now is paying off expenses incurred when he wasn't making prize money.

    I don't know why he'd pay $40K/year to go to a private college when he could attend the University of Colorado for almost half the price -- he's already paying for living expenses -- full-time, and they allow part-time students, which would fit more with his schedule.
  13. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

    The interview demonstrates why my admiration for Patrick is well-placed.
    Indeed, it will only increase, after seeing this.
  14. Zemgirl

    Zemgirl Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure that's true. There are quite a few skaters who've done just that, including some in fairly demanding schools and fields of study; for instance, I believe both Nathalie Pechalat and Alban Preaubert were working towards/have completed graduate degrees in management; I can even think of skaters who got degrees in engineering while still competing. Tomas Verner has a university degree, as does Alissa Czisny, and there are quite a few ice dancers who are students at the University of Michigan (including D/W), though I doubt they're taking a full course load.

    The question is what someone wants to get out of their college/university experience. If the goal is to learn and study towards a degree, even taking one or two courses per semester works towards that. But if you're looking to study full-time and have a social life like other students, I guess it would be more difficult to combine skating and college. And $40,000 per year on top of all the expenses skating entails is a lot of money. Actually, it's a lot of money, regardless of whether there are skating expenses. Though I'm surprised Chan isn't in better shape financially; surely he should be making some money from shows as well as prize money?

    I don't like watching online interviews, but if there's a transcript somewhere, I'd check it out.
  15. skatingfanfun

    skatingfanfun Member

    Regarding the training and coaching cost, I watched the interview, they are not 15K-20k and 25k, they are 150k-200k and 250k respectively. In chinese, we don't count by k, we count by 10k (wan) :) quite confusing. When I need to say numbers over 10k, it is always challenging even after so many years living in an English speaking country.
  16. attyfan

    attyfan Well-Known Member

    I wasn't thinking just of the problems in combining competition and college; I was thinking in terms of the level of success. It is incredibily difficult to maintain high levels of work and concentration in two different endeavors, so many of those who have combined the two have not enjoyed the high levels of competitive success that Kwan had.
  17. os168

    os168 Active Member

    My goodness you are absolutely right! Yikes.. that was an embarrassing mistake. I wrote it quickly... ahem :yikes: Anyway, comments revised, thanks for noticing. I revised it with bit more detail, the cost were based on his training cost in US leading up to the Vancouver Olympics. Not clear how much it is now.

    BTW I had no idea it cost so much to train! That almost half a million USD? That sound pretty insane!! Consider winning the world championship in 2010 is only worth USD $45k for either ladies or men and then $67k per pairs/couple. That doesn't sound right surely?!

    Some interesting comments regarding to the scholarship and university options, thanks for sharing. I thought maybe because Patrick is not US citizen that is why it was not available to him. University of Toronto would be an amazing option, but as far as I know it is a very tough school to get into being the best in Canada.
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2011
  18. Andora

    Andora Skating season ends as baseball season begins

    Patrick's program-keeping over a couple of years seems mighty financially pragmatic when you think about it. :p
  19. marbri

    marbri Hey, Kool-Aid!

    Indeed. Lori doesn´t come cheap :D
  20. Andora

    Andora Skating season ends as baseball season begins

    Cue snarky comment saying she should. :lol:
  21. fan

    fan Well-Known Member

    If it's that difficult for a world champ, I can't even imagine how difficult it is for skaters struggling to make it to nationals
  22. Proustable

    Proustable New Member

    The New York Times had an article that pegged Chan's training budget at 158,000 in US dollars.
  23. fan

    fan Well-Known Member

    Do you have a link? I would find it very interesting
  24. skatingfanfun

    skatingfanfun Member

    There is nothing to be embarased about:) My colleague showed me his house, a big two-story house in a good neiboughood, and I tried to guess the price, and said, it must be about 40k. His face was RED after hearing my comment. I had to explain to him that I meant 400k, and the differentcounting unit in Chinese and in English:) anyway, I'm shocked to learn that it's so costly to train at a high level for figure skating. I mean, I knew it is expensive, but never imagined it would be sooooooooo expensive. I read about it once before but was skeptical about the accuracy. That was why I went to check it this time.
  25. luCN

    luCN New Member

    Glad you like the interview :)

    S/Z's gold medal brings much more attention on figure skating in China,but most news and interviews are so terrible...I hope we can have more deep interviews like this from now on...

    I'm glad skaters like Chan and Kozuka like Lambiel kind of skater,not those just concern on medals and scores.They have great skating skills and can improve to make intersting and beautiful programs.you know,earstern men always matured much later than westerns.hope they can be unique,charming,attactive and their own style when they're around 25...

    btw,I saw somewhere Lambiel's training cost is around 150k per year,so maybe it's normal?
  26. Proustable

    Proustable New Member

    Link for fan

    It's behind a paywall, but if you don't go to the NY times regularly, you should be able to read it.
  27. barbk

    barbk Well-Known Member

    Just to clarify -- CU Boulder is the original campus, but there is also CU Denver, the Anschutz Medical Campus in Aurora, and CU Colorado Springs. A number of athletes at the Olympic Training Center take classes at the Springs campus, and I think that there is some deal that athletes affiliated with the center get in-state tuition, thought that would not apply to Patrick.

    He might get resident rates if he gets a green card and establishes residency.
  28. skatingfanfun

    skatingfanfun Member

    Thanks for the link! I'm just wondering why Chan could not improve his Axel with the same methods he used so successfully with the 4T?
  29. Proustable

    Proustable New Member

    My guess? His technique on toe jumps is clearly quite strong vs edge jumps (witness his trouble with the triple loop), so getting/improving the quad is easier, relatively speaking. I suspect that now that he's doing the quad salchow in practice (talking about it, anyway) we might see an improvement on the axel. At least 50% landed cleanly, anyway (last year he was batting about 33%, fwiw, and that's just landed, not cleanly)
  30. ksneds

    ksneds New Member

    Chan almost certainly is earning a fair bit from shows and from sponsorship deals (Cheerios, at least at one point, etc.), as well as funding from the Canadian Olympic Organization/SkateCanada.

    That said, I suspect something 'got lost in translation' with regards to his training expenses. I suspect the $158,000 figure from the NY Times is much more accurate. It does not seem credible that Chan could afford close to $500,000 a year in expenses - even with income from shows, sponsorships and sports org funding. However, I'm guessing that since he spends much of the year in the US, Chan no longer qualifies for OHIP (healthcare in Ontario), so he'd have to get private health insurance. Though he may get some coverage via SkateCanada deals for elite athletes.

    Also, as Canadian citizen and unless he's declared residency in the US, Chan would be paying Canadian taxes. He would only be paying US taxes on money earned in the US, and the US-CAN tax treaties provide for exemptions so you don't pay taxes in both countries. Not to mention, given the current economic situation, Chan is probably much more likely to want to keep his money and future pension up North.

    As to reasons for not starting university - I strongly suspect that, as a non US citizen or permanent citizen - Chan could not legally enroll at a US university with his current visa. Both the US and CAN are very strict about not permitting persons to take any formal educational courses unless you enter with a student visa. I remember reading that Tessa Virtue is taking classes at a Canadian University despite training in the US - for the same reason I assume, as she would not have a student visa.