Belfast Telegraph

Skating: Bureiko has it all figured for Jenna's world target

By Grant Smyth sportseditor@belfasttelegraph.co.uk

When former World Championship silver medallist Yuri Bureiko hands out a compliment to a figure skater, it's time to sit up and take notice.

WHEN former World Championship silver medallist Yuri Bureiko hands out a compliment to a figure skater, it's time to sit up and take notice.

And when he says Coleraine's Jenna McCorkell is the most competitive skater he has met in 20 years then you know you're dealing with a young woman who could radically alter the landscape in world figure skating.

Already British Senior champion, at only 16 years old, Jenna has transformed the scene in the UK and with her invitation to this year's Senior Grand Prix in France she is breaking yet another record.

That's because no British lady skater has ever been invited to the the top international event on the sporting calendar and incredibly she has achieved those lofty heights while still an amateur.

Bureiko has just been named the British Figure Skating Coach of the year and, after emulating his success as a skater in the coaching field, what he says can be taken very seriously.

"Jenna has no-one in front of her and no-one behind her in the UK, she is in a league of her own," said Yuri.

"She thinks and trains like the very best in the world and she is the only British skater I have met in 20 years who wants to succeed as much as I do.

"When I was at the Worlds and Europeans with Jenna this year many of the World's top coaches praised Jenna and it was very inspiring to receive credit from these people," added Yuri.

That's a massive recommendation from the Russian and after training with one of the top coaches in the world, Victor Kudriavcev, in Switzerland for two weeks last month Jenna is being given the very best chance to achieve her dreams.

She is already one of only a handful of skaters in the world to land all of the triple jumps, including the triple axle which was attempted by only one ladies figure skater in the last world championships in Washington in 2003.

Jenna is now only a visitor to her native Coleraine and trains at the International School of Skating in Coventry, where she lives with Bureiko and his family and is in line to represent GB at the 2006 Winter Olympics.

She is sponsored by the Northern Ireland Sports Council Lottery Fund who have already provided funding for her for the next 18 months.

For more information about Jenna go to www.jenna-mccorkell.com

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