This interview was made on the
8th of June 2002. It was a good opportunity to review the
2001-2002 season, a great international season for Brian.
How did you choose the music for your
short and long program ?
The music of the short program was chosen by Jean-Roland
Racle, who thought about mexican music. I liked the music,
so I kept it. The first time I saw 'Mission' on tv, I knew
I would use the music in a program one day, so actually
it's quite a long time I'm thinking about it. The same thing
happenned with 'Dune', which I use at the end of my long
Who made the choreography ?
Alexandre Riccitelli. I worked with him last June,
in Orcières-Merlette. The first thing you're working
on with a choreograph, is the order of the jumps, and the
corresponding steps and lines that lead into them... But
it is I who chose the order of the jumps.
This season was your first big
international season. How did it go with the competitions
The season started as usual with the Masters,
in Orléans. During the Masters we have the
opportunity to unveil our new programs to members of the
french federation and to judges, so they can tell us what
they think about it, and if the programs don't break any
rules. The competition was great; my programs were well
received, more particularly my short program. I really
feel at ease with this music.
Then, I participated at Skate America,
my first senior Grand Prix. I was quite impressed, but
there was a good atmosphere so I took it easy. There was
some stress of course, but I used it as an extra motivation,
and on the other hand I had nothing to loose...
Concerning the results, I could have placed higher, maybe
5th or 6th. The mistake in the short program cost me a
lot : I did a great quadruple toe, maybe the best of the
season, but I had too much speed on the landing so I couldn't
land the triple toe of the combinaison afterwards. I ended
in the second group for the free program, and it was difficult
to move upward.
Skating at a high altitude was not so hard, but we do
feel the difference. During a practice, I had some nose
bleeding during a spin... I think it was due to altitude
and tireness. In fact the same thing happen in Salt Lake
City, but it was not as severe.
I felt a bit robbed after the short program of the French
Championships; I ended
5th, but I could have been 3rd or 4th, Stanick was quite
held up a bit. Anyway, It boosted me even more for the
long program. The long program didn't start so well as
I missed my very first jump, a quadruple toe. But I immediately
afterwards I said to myself 'you have to try it again...'
and this time it was successfull. After having changed
the first part of my program to add the second quad, I
had to change the order of the other jumps. In this kind
of situation you have to think about not changing the
choreography too much, to keep the right entrance of the
jumps... and to remember the other elements. I finished
3rd overall. I was satisfied with the results, because
even though I had though of being in the top two, the
bronze medal sent me to the European Championships. So
I was happy with the results.
The European Championships
were defninitely the best part of the season.
During the warm-up of the qualification round, I didn't
land anything. Not even atriple Axel nor a quad, and all
the other triples were not clean either. But when I stepped
on the ice, my program started and I knew I was 'in it'.
In this case once you've done the first 2-3 jumps, you
know the rest will most probably be as great, and that
you're gonna make a perfect program. Of course, you need
to stay focus, but at the end you feel really great, and
you're really satisfied with your performance, the result
doesn't matter anymore.
I was as relax before the short program. But before the
long program I realised I could medal, so I start to feel
more stress... but it's something you learn how to deal
As a consequence, right after the Euros I was told that
I was selected for the Olympic Games
in Salt Lake City. Since the beginning of the season
I knew I had a little chance to go, and I did all I could
for that. When I was told the great news, I cried of joy.
I don't think it's too soon in my carreer, I gained a
lot of experience at the Olympics, I learnt a lot. Next
time I will know how such a competition is like, and next
time I will go for gold.
Before arriving in Salt Lake, about 4-5 days before the
beginning of the competition, I spent one week in Calgary
with Tarassova. We worked on technique, but mostly on
choreography... I could feel the difference ! It was a
great preparation for the competition.
I knew the Olympic Village by heart. As an athlete I had
access to all the competition in the open air, and I could
ask for pass for indoor sports. But I never left the village
to attend other competitions, it was too painful with
the security ! Each 10 meters the bags were inspected,
we had to go through a magnetic door... I had to drink
a bit from the bottles I was carrying in my bag... but
one bottle dated from the European Championships a month
ago ! Still, I had to drink a bit of it. One day I walked
my parents to their hotel, and on the way back I had to
queue for more than half a hour. They kept my screwdrivers,
et even my deo bomb ! Had things been easier, I think
I would have spend some time watching bobsleigh.
Skating wise, there was two practices a day. For food
there were pizzas, pastas... that was ok.
Did I feel an extra pressure ? No, not really. But I was
really impressed by the crowd. Before entering the ice
for warm-up, I asked Pierre Trente if there was a lot
of audience. He answered 'no'... but when I saw it I did
not agree !
About the competition in itself, I was not really happy
of my short program, but the free program was ok, I keep
fighting through it.
The three following weeks I was at home in Poitiers to
prepare the Worlds Championships
in Nagano. As my coach had her baby, Laurent Depouilly
came to coach me, and he was still by my side during the
Personnally, I would have preferred to take part to the
Junior World Championships and not the Senior ones, but
the french federation said it was better to attend Senior
Worlds. The federation selected me, and then said Junior
Worlds were too close in time for me to do both. Still,
I would have preferred Junior Worlds, and that would have
made things a little easier with the other french skaters
for the selection...Anyway, they realised afterwards it
was maybe not the best decision, so next year I should
attend Junior Worlds. In addition, I have already defeat
the Junior World Champion at Skate America.
At the very end of the season, I took part to the French
Team Tour. It was really nice, there was a friendly
atmosphere, I really enjoyed it. A bit tiring as we skated
a lot, and there were long trips in bus. For the last
show in Grenoble, the other skaters threw me water so
I was completely wet before entering the ice... but when
one skates to 'The lake of the Connemara' it was not completely
unexpectable. During the last gala every one has a little
This summer, I am going
to the United States on the 11th of June to train with
Morozov for two weeks. We are going to build the new programs
and choose the new musics. Then there will be two weeks
in Anglet at the beginning of July, and two weeks in Pralognan
with Jean-Christophe Simon at the end of August. I'll
have to find places to train between those dates, as I
can't stop skating for 15 days...
This year everyone will have to be ready as soon as early
September, as there are the Masters
in Brest, and all the Elite skaters have to take
part to the competition. Then I will skate at two Senior
Grand Prix, Skate America
in Spokane and the Lalique Trophy