After ISU World Figure Skating Championships in Japan in 2015, he said: It´s over.
He concluded a long career. But remained a part of the figure skating world.
And shortly afterwards, Tomas Verner, the European Figure Skating Champion from Zagreb 2008 and the best Czech figure skater of recent years, has become the ambassador of ISU European Figure Skating Championships 2017 in Ostrava.
Children´s love brought him to figure skating in the past. He fell in love with his kindergarten classmate named Štěpánka. She was a starting figure skater and he wanted to stay as close to her as possible. So, he persuaded his parents to allow him start with figure skating courses in the city of České Budějovice.
He has grown from talented junior to one of the best figure skaters in the world with precise technique.
He became the Czech figure skating champion ten times, aged sixteen when winning his first title.
A gold medal at ISU European Figure Skating Championships was the highlight of his career – Tomáš Verner, aged 22 at that time, became the European Figure Skating Champion in Zagreb in 2008. This gold medal was his second consecutive medal from ISU European Figure Skating Championships – as he was a silver medalist in Warsaw in 2007. He completed the whole collection of medals from ISU European Figure Skating Championships after reaching the bronze in Bern in 2011.
He attacked the medals even at ISU World Figure Skating Championships several times –finished fourth in Tokyo 2007 as well as two years later in Los Angeles. Although not getting to the podium at ISU World Figure Skating Championships, he became No.1 of the ISU World Ranking in spring 2009.
Coached by Vlasta Kopřivová, Tomáš Verner lived in Oberstdorf (Germany) for couple of years and co-operated with a coach Michael Huth. Figure skating fans loved him for being a showman offering very popular creative choreographies.
Tomáš Verner competed at the Winter Olympics for three times – the best result came during his last participation: he finished eleventh in Sochi 2014.
After Sochi, he decided to close up the story of his career during ISU World Figure Skating Championship in Japan. After he had finished on the tenth place in Saitama (his best result at World Figure Skating Championships since 2009), Tomáš just said: This was the end.
Looking back all over his career, he told reporters: “My career was like riding rollercoasters. Although I fear it, I ride rollercoasters regularly and I love it. With my figure skating, it was the same. Even though I was scared sometimes, I love this sport and that´s why I stayed with it for so long. All of it was worth experiencing, the ups and downs, victories … I met a lot of people during my career who helped me to develop as a person and I am really grateful for that.”
Tomáš Verner stayed in figure skating world, though. He still takes part in exhibition shows all around the world. He works very closely with the Czech Olympic Committee as an ambassador of several programs focused mainly on promoting sports for children and youth.
However, there is one paradox in his career – throughout all over the years at the top level, he never competed in Ostrava Arena. “Obviously, it is a bit pity that ISU European Figure Skating Championships will take place in Ostrava when my active career is over. But I am really happy to be a part of the Organizing Committee,” one of the best Czech figure skaters in history says.
“Being an ambassador is a great challenge for me. As I am not from the Moravian-Silesian Region, I can´t be your tourist guide there, I am not able to recommend you where to go and which restaurant to visit – but I surely am able to tell you that this is a region of wonderful people. They have always been friendly and open to all visitors. No matter what event it was, they always attended figure skating sport in large numbers as nowhere in our country.”
Born: June 3, 1986 in Pisek
Sochi 2014: 11th
Vancouver 2010: 19th
Turin 2006: 18th
ISU World Figure Skating Champs. ISU European Figure Skating Champs.
2006: 13th 2006: 10th
2007: 4th 2007: 2nd
2008: 15th 2008: 1st
2009: 4th 2009: 6th
2010: 10th 2010: 10th
2011: 16th 2011: 3rd
2013: 21st 2012: 5th
2014: 10th 2013: 11th