Team Amber (LAT): «We feel stronger than ever before»

Team Amber practices in Riga, Latvia. /Credits: Team Amber

Team Amber is the first and only ISU Senior level team in the Baltic region. This Senior team consists of 18 skaters, the coaches of the team are Anda Medne and the previous captain of the team Eva Cekanauska. A few days before the Worlds, interview. 

How was your season?
Eva Cekanauska: The beginning of this season was very strong for Amber, we started to train early, our programs and performance were quite good in ISU Winter Cup and Latvian Championships at the beginning of December. However, after that, we were struggling with health issues of the skaters and could not train with our full potential for almost two months. Now we are back on track and feel stronger than ever before.
Also, I am very thankful for our team management and their efforts into organizing our daily teamwork and our participations to the competitions. This season our personal best score is 96.08 points.

How has the team been selected for the Worlds this year?
As you may know, Latvia is the smallest country by population participating at Worlds Championships so for us, it is already an achievement to form a team of 16 age-eligible skaters. 

How is developing synchro in Latvia?
In Latvia synchro has been developing very slowly due to lack of skaters, financial support, and knowledge of this sport. We do not have sports development program in our country yet and the team is fully financed by skaters or their parents.The last few years we have been collaborating with Finnish coaches – Riika Laaninen and Merja Laakkonen and our performances have improved significantly – the team was formed from single skaters and at first years we did not even know that there is a count in synchronized skating. ? This season Amber has experienced change of coaches and training structure, so far it looks that it is just for good. Also, this year our younger team Amberlight was formed, so we hope that next season there will be 2 teams from Latvia participating in international competitions.

How were your previous experiences at Worlds?
We have really enjoyed all our participations at Worlds Championships (2012, 2015, 2016). We have skipped 2017 WC due to lack of skaters and financial resources; however, we are still very thankful for the opportunity to be a part of such amazing events and community of synchro.

What are your goals in Stockholm?
Our #1 goal is to skate clean and enjoy both of our programs. Of course, we hope to receive all the levels and improve our personal best score.
Another goal is to prove to Latvian Skating Association and others who do not believe in synchro, that they won't stop us from going further, improving our score and developing this amazing sport in our country.

Why did you launch a crowdfunding a few days before the Worlds?
For unknown reasons Latvian Skating Association refused to support our team financially at the really last moment and we were left out of choice. We are thankful to everyone who supports us and it gives us an extra motivation to show the best performances in Stockholm. We will skate for you! <3
You can still donate here

When are you leaving for the Worlds? Is everything ready?
We are planning to leave for the Worlds on 3rd of April. Currently, the team is in a very good shape and extremely focused on the practices. Of course, there are still minor improvements needed, but we will nail it at the Worlds!





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