Posted February. 24, 2010 08:07,
World figure skating champion Kim Yu-na takes her first step toward the Olympic gold medal today at Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver with the short program.
Kim is far stronger in the short program than in free skating, whose competition starts Friday. In the eight competitions she has taken part in over the last two seasons, she has lost just once in the short program, and her sole loss was by just 0.56th of a point.
Kim did her free skating program at her official practice yesterday partly due to her confidence in the short program. She practiced her short program and free skating twice in her four official practices from Sunday.
In contrast, rival Mao Asada of Japan practiced her short program three times in her four official practices.
Kim and Asada skated in the same practice session for the first time yesterday. Kim was in her usual tracksuit but Asada wore her short program costume.
Both focused on jumping. Kim practiced her trademark triple lutz-triple toe loop combination and Asada on the triple axel.
The two competitors also played a mind game. Though they ran into each other several times, they never made eye contact. They instead just cast side glances at each other while talking with their coaches.
Both declined to hold interviews after their first practice day. Given Kims dominance in the short program, Asada says she can win only if she does well in the event.
In speed skating, Lee Seung-hoon, who won Koreas first medal in the mens 5,000 meters, aims to win his second medal in the 10,000 meters today.