It’s a partnership that started when they were children and one they hope will conclude with an Olympic gold medal.
Canada’s ice skating darlings, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, will take to the ice in Pyeongchang for the last time Feb. 18 and 19 to compete for gold.
“We’re excited about the Olympics, obviously they’re what we think about when we go to bed every night and wake up every morning,” Moir said at the start of the skating season in October.
Virtue, 28, and Moir, 30, were already golden once during these games after winning the team figure skating event alongside Patrick Chan, Meagan Duhamel, Eric Radford, Gabrielle Daleman and Kaetlyn Osmond. That gold just adds to an already storied career for the pair that includes eight Canadian Championships, seven world championship medals and four Olympics medals… including gold at home in Vancouver in 2010.
The duo’s two-year hiatus from competition came after they won silver in Sochi in 2014. Virtue said the time away gave them a chance to re-evaluate.
“It changed our approach to both how we train as athletes and to how we compete. I think we have a different perspective on what this all means in the scheme of things and how personal it is. Our investment in this whole process is so fulfilling … it’s all of this work for those brief fleeting moments at the Olympic Games and we have a better understanding of the magnitude and what it all means to us,” she said.
For their last season, the pair opted for modern music including songs by the Rolling Stones, Santana and the soundtrack for Moulin Rouge. They did receive some pushback from their coaches and choreographers on their song choices, but skating to songs they loved was important to them.
“At this point in our careers, 20 years in, we know we have to be committed and invested in every musical note, in every movement, in every part of the story that we’re trying to portray and we certainly feel that in both programs,” Virtue explained.
And really, it’s that connection between each other and the audience that has been the cornerstone of their success.
And Moir hopes they can do it for their fans one more time.
“With programs that we love, both of these, I mean every time we get an audience we want to perform for them and we’ll be looking to kind of bring the people to their feet this week. That has always been our goal ever since we were little young skaters to make people feel something.”
The ice dance short program begins at 7 p.m. on Sunday, with the free skate running Monday at 7 p.m.