Call them pioneers in their homeland, trailblazers for a new generation of Italian pairs skating.
When Stefania Berton and Ondřej Hotárek first joined forces a little more than three years ago, they had no idea what their partnership might inspire.
But Italy, a country with a rich history in ice dance, can now imagine the same kind of possibilities in the pairs discipline.
“Italy did not have any pair teams at a high level before us. Now we have seven pairs in senior and junior. It’s a beginning,” Berton, 22, told IFS during a stop at Skate Canada, where she and Hotárek claimed the bronze medal.
Originally published in February 2013