Ice dancers Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir are Canada’s flag bearers at the upcoming Olympics in Pyeongchang. Sportsnet recently caught up with the duo, who thought they were calling it a career after winning silver in Sochi four years ago. Virtue, 28, and Moir, 30, talk about their change of heart, the comeback, and Canada’s chances in South Korea.
SPORTSNET: You’re back.
MOIR: We’re back.
That was the expectation, maybe?
VIRTUE: No, actually.
Really? You weren’t planning to compete in Pyeongchang? Not even in the back of your minds?
V: No, I think in Sochi we truly believed that was it — and we were comfortable with that. We were happy with our performances; we were content with our experience.
V: We thought… [Both start laughing.]
V: We thought that we felt good about wrapping up our careers there. It didn’t take long for us to figure out we missed having that purpose, that we missed having a goal to be striving towards. And also, just imagining the 2018 Olympics and not being there was a struggle. It didn’t feel right.
The idea of watching and not skating.
M: Yeah. Not marching in the opening ceremony, not being a part of this really great and close Canadian team — it really is a family. We couldn’t imagine not being a family.
There was a lot of talk that you should’ve won gold in Sochi, that you got ripped off. Did that have anything to do with your decision to come back?
M: You know what’s funny? Not really.
V: Our coaches asked us [the same question] when we wanted to come back. They were, I think, worried that there was some bitterness or resentment, and there really, truly is not.
M: I don’t think revenge is enough to fuel the fire it takes to go to an Olympic Games and be successful. What we want out of these Games is very different than in both of our previous Games. We talk about how special our Sochi Olympics were — it’s really honest and it’s true. In many ways those Games mean a lot more to us than the Vancouver ones did. The colour of the medal is one thing but we’re super proud of our performances. And that silver for us is something that we’re extremely proud of in our careers. I don’t feel like there’s any bitterness, or we want to come back to get that gold back. It’s more just like, there’s another chance at gold and we want to be there, and we’re going to go and give our all again.
V: It’s more about seeing what we’re capable of. That’s what’s driving us at this point: seeing where we can take our skating and how we can approach things differently.
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