Ilderton ice dance star Scott Moir has become used to standing atop championship podiums and tasting sweet figure skating success.
But yesterday, the world synchronized skating championship volunteer helped put together Maple Leaf-shaped victory podiums and lugged in bottled water at the John Labatt Centre in preparation for tomorrow's short program and Saturday's free skate.
"I'm helping my uncle Paul in (event) properties and this is something new for me to be involved in the back of house at a skating event," Moir said. "It's been a lot of fun to volunteer. Skating is definitely something that's been in my family and I'm sure I'll be involved for many years to come."
Fresh from a sixth-place finish with partner Tessa Virtue of London at the world figure skating championships in Tokyo earlier this month, Moir won't be able to watch any of the synchro event. He and Virtue have signed on for three shows on the Stars On Ice tour, which includes stops in Montreal, Ottawa and Wednesday in London.
"I'm a little bit upset because it's such a great atmosphere at synchro events and I wanted to be here to see it," said Moir, 19. "But I'm really excited about Stars On Ice. We've skated in a show before with Jamie (Sale) and David (Pelletier), but this will be the best cast we've ever been a part of. It has everybody in it."
Though he won't be in the building, he knows how his cousins Sheri and Cara will feel when they skate on home ice for Canada's Nexxice. Moir and Virtue competed in their first senior nationals at the JLC in 2005 before winning the 2006 world junior title.
"It's just a good feeling to be out there with family and friends supporting you," he said. "It's going to be really loud with all those crazy synchro fans in the stands."
Moir can't wait to begin training and is buoyed by the positive result at Tokyo.
"It was the highlight of our career so far, being our first senior worlds and finishing sixth. (Canadian champions) Marie-France (Dubreuil) and Patrice (Lauzon) said we'd probably remember this one more than any of the others. Tokyo was great and the Japanese fans are so intense. It was a great experience."