Verner in 2010
|Country represented||Czech Republic|
3 June 1986 |
|Height||1.80 m (5 ft 11 in)|
|Former coach||Robert Emerson, Vlasta Kopřivová, Iveta Bidařová|
|Former choreographer||Pasquale Camerlengo, Rostislav Sinicyn|
|Skating club||BK České Budějovice|
|Former training locations||Toronto, Detroit, New Jersey, Leppavirta|
|ISU personal best scores|
Cup of Nice
Cup of Nice
Tomáš Verner (Czech pronunciation: [ˈtomaːʃ ˈvɛrnɛr] ( ); born 3 June 1986) is a Czech figure skater. He is the 2008 European champion, a medalist at two other European Championships (2007 silver, 2011 bronze), and a ten-time (2002–2004, 2006–2008, 2011–2014) Czech national champion. He has won six senior Grand Prix medals, including the 2010 Cup of Russia title.
Verner started skating at the age of five. He also did athletics and played football before choosing to focus on skating. At the age of 12, he moved from Písek, where he was born, to Prague where his talent was spotted by coach Vlasta Kopřivová.
He won his first national title in the 2001–02 season, and later that year represented the Czech Republic at the European Championships, where he finished 14th, and at the World Championships, where he failed to qualify for the free skate. Over the next four years, Verner finished as high as 10th place at Europeans and 13th at Worlds. He missed much of the 2004–05 season after he twisted his ankle and tore part of the muscle from the bone. He trained in Prague and also traveled regularly to Oberstdorf, Germany to train with Michael Huth. During summers, he would also spend a few weeks training in Leppävirta, Finland.
In 2007, Verner improved significantly upon his previous results. At the European Championships in Warsaw, he led after the short program before finishing with the silver medal behind Brian Joubert. He was the first Czech male single skater to medal at the European Championships since 1992. At the 2007 World Championships in Japan, he finished fourth overall. Having popped a triple axel and made an error on a spin, he was in ninth place after the short but moved up to fourth after the long program, landing a quadruple toe loop-triple toe loop combination and a further quadruple toe loop.
In 2008, Verner became the first Czech male to win Europeans since Petr Barna's victory for Czechoslovakia in 1992. He was fourth after the short program at the 2008 World Championships but finished 15th after popping several jumps in his long program.
Verner's 2008–09 Grand Prix assignments were the Cup of China and the Cup of Russia. He finished third and second, respectively, qualifying for the Grand Prix Final where he finished 4th. At the 2009 Europeans, Verner scored a personal best in the short program and was in second place, but made several mistakes in his long program which dropped him to 6th place overall. He finished fourth at the 2009 World Championships.
Verner began the 2009–10 season with a silver medal at the 2009 Trophée Eric Bompard. He finished fifth at the 2010 Skate America. While at Skate America, he became ill with H1N1 flu, from which he was unable to fully recover during the rest of the season. Verner was first alternate for the Grand Prix Final, and eventually filled the slot left open by the injured Brian Joubert; he came in sixth. He was second to Michal Březina at the Czech Championships, dropped to 10th at Europeans and struggled at the Olympics, finishing 19th. Verner decided not to compete at the World Championships because he felt unprepared for the event.
Before the start of the 2010–11 season, Verner changed coaches, and began training with Robert Emerson in Richmond Hill, near Toronto. Whereas in Europe, he typically trained his program in parts, with full run-throughs only before a competition, his new coach requires complete run-throughs in everyday training. Verner won the bronze at 2010 Cup of China, his first Grand Prix event of the year. At the 2010 Cup of Russia, Verner set a new personal best in the long program and beat Patrick Chan and Jeremy Abbott to win his first senior Grand Prix title. He was the only person to beat Patrick Chan in international competition during the 2010-2011 season. He qualified for the 2010–2011 Grand Prix Final, where he finished fifth in the short program and fourth in the free skate for fifth place overall. His next event was the Czech national championships, which he won for the first time in three years. Verner was fifth in the short program at the 2011 Europeans following a fall on his triple Axel, but finished second in the free skate to move up to third overall. The bronze medal was his first podium finish at the Europeans since winning the event in 2008.
Following the European Championships, Verner and a number of other elite skaters performed in a show in North Korea, an event which was sanctioned by the Czech skating association and the ISU but resulted in some criticism in the Czech Republic.
Verner finished 12th at the 2011 World Championships.
Verner withdrew from the 2011 Nebelhorn Trophy due to a back injury. He was not fully recovered by the Grand Prix series. He finished 5th at the 2011 NHK Trophy and withdrew from his second assignment, the 2011 Rostelecom Cup. At the Czech Championships, Verner was second behind Michal Brezina after the short program but won the free skate and took his eighth national title. He finished 5th at the 2012 European Championships and 16th at the 2012 World Championships.
Verner was 11th at the 2013 European Championships and 21st at the World Championships. In June and July 2013, he trained at the IceDome camp in Oberstdorf, working with Vlasta Kopřivová, Michael Huth, and Rostislav Sinicyn. He received no Grand Prix assignments for the 2013–2014 season.
In August 2013, Verner announced that he would return to Oberstdorf full-time to work with Michael Huth as his coach. In October, he won gold at the 2013 Ondrej Nepela Memorial after placing second in the short program and first in the free skate. Verner went on the compete at the Cup of Nice, which he also won.
In December, Verner competed at the Czech Championships where he won his tenth title, twenty-eight points ahead of second-place finisher, Michal Brezina, securing himself a spot at his third Olympics. He finished 11th at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi. Although he initially intended to retire in February 2014, Verner later said he would compete at the 2014 World Championships in Saitama.
Verner was born in Písek, Czech Republic and moved to the capital, Prague, when he was 12 years old. His father is a doctor. He has an older brother, Miroslav, who formerly competed internationally in junior pair skating, and a younger sister, Kateřina. He was in relationship for four years with figure skater Nathalie Péchalat.
Verner studied physical education and sports at Charles University in Prague, and earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in 2010, and is currently studying for an MBA degree in Prague. He speaks Czech, German, and English and also knows some Russian.
|Season||Short program||Free skating||Exhibition|
|Grand Prix Final||4th||6th||5th|
|GP Cup of China||3rd||3rd|
|GP Cup of Russia||4th||2nd||1st||WD|
|GP NHK Trophy||2nd||5th|
|GP Skate America||5th||8th|
|GP Skate Canada||5th|
|Cup of Nice||1st|
|JGP Czech Rep.||17th||15th||10th||1st|
|Czech Champ.||2nd J.||2nd||1st||1st||1st||1st||1st||1st||2nd||1st||1st||1st||1st|
|GP = Grand Prix; JGP = Junior Grand Prix
J. = Junior level; WD = Withdrew; QR = Qualifying round
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