(Counter clockwise from top left: Martinez with Russian coach and Olympian Ilia Kulik; Mrs. Martinez with top figure skating coach John Nicks; Martinez with coach Scott Wendland; Kulik with Martinez in one of his exercises ; Martinez spinning in the air; Wendland teaches Martinez some moves; and Martinez doing leg exercises. Photos courtesy of SM’s Cora Guidote)
(14 October 2014, Pasay City, Philippines) Philippine Olympian Michael Martinez is set to compete in the Hhilton Honors Skate America on October 24-26, the first of six events in the prestigious Grand Prix world skating competitions. Martinez is the only Filipino and Southeast Asian to compete in the International Skating Union (ISU) Grand Prix of Figure Skating (Grand Prix).
Martinez trains under first rate coaches Ilia Kulik, John Nicks and Scott Wendland. Skate America will feature several members of the 2014 U.S. Olympic Figure Skating Team including Gracie Gold, Jeremy Abbott and Jason Brown.
The Grand Prix is a series of senior international figure skating competitions in the 2014 to 2015 season. Medals will be awarded in the disciplines of men's singles, ladies' singles, pair skating, and ice dancing. Skaters will earn points based on their placement at each event and the top six in each discipline will qualify to compete at the Grand Prix Final to be held in Barcelona, Spain.
Other events in the Grand Prix series include Skate Canada from October 31-November 2; LEXUS Cup of China from November 7 to 9; Rostelecom Cup in Russia from November 14 to 16; Trophee Eric Bompard in France from November 21 to 23 ; and NHK Trophy in Japan from November 28 to 30.
Skaters earn points throughout the Grand Prix Series to qualify for the Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final. The 2014 Grand Prix Final will be held on December 11 to 14 in Spain.
Organized by the ISU, the Grand Prix series sets the stage for the 2015 European, Four Continents, and World Championships. The corresponding series for junior-level skaters will be the 2014–15 ISU Junior Grand Prix.
Martinez, who ranks 27th in the world clinched his first senior international title championship, also a first for the Philippines at the 2012 Crystal Skate held in Brazov, Romania. In 2013 to 2014, Martinez started his season at the 2013 ISU Junior Grand Prix in Latvia where he finished 4th. He later placed third in the Junior Grand Prix in Estonia in October 2013. He also competed at the Nebelhorn Trophy senior level in Germany in September 2013. The Nebelhorn Trophy was the last qualifying event for the 2014 Winter Olympics where Martinez finished 7th overall, thus earning a spot for the Philippines in men's singles — a first for his country and in Southeast Asia. At the recent Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, Martinez finished 19th.
Martinez took up figure skating when he was eight, inspired by skaters spinning and jumping while shopping with his mother at SM Southmall. He began training in 2010 in the United States and since then his lifelong dream has been to win an Olympic medal. Martinez has garnered over 190 medals and trophies from various international and local competitions.
Through the years, SM and the Philippine Skating Union (PSU) have conducted several figure skating competitions that have given birth to international champions such as Martinez.
The excellence demonstrated by skaters especially during competitions is a mark of quality that the SM Skating Rink can provide with its world-class venue and facilities. Property conglomerate SM Prime Holdings, Inc. operates skating rinks through SM Lifestyle Entertainment, Inc. at the SM Mega Fashion Hall in Mandaluyong, SM Mall of Asia in Pasay, and SM Southmall in Las Pinas.
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About SM Lifestyle Entertainment, Inc.
SM Lifestyle Entertainment Incorporated or SMLEI is the lifestyle and entertainment solutions company of SM Prime Holdings Inc. that offers the best in movies, events, leisure and technology. Starting with SM Cinema, the largest cinema exhibitor in the country, as its sole marque, the company grew into 12 major brands. Currently tucked under its belt are brands such as SM Cinema, Director’s Club Cinema, IMAX Theatre, WM Cinemas, SM Skating Rink, SM Bowling and Leisure Center, Exploreum, Snack Time, e-PLUS Tap to Pay, e-PLUS Digital, Mall of Asia Arena, and SM Tickets. SMLEI aims to promote bonding activities among Filipino families and friends, through entertainment and leisure facilities, while advocating the ease of use and personalized service created to complement the Filipino lifestyle.
For information, contact:
Mr. Noel Resultay
Philippine Skating Union
Tel. No.: (+63917) 8317228
Ms. Stephanie Henares
Manager, PR and Social Corporate Marketing
SM Lifestyle Entertainment, Inc.
Tel No.: (+63917) 5778374
Tuesday, October 14, 2014