Jayne TORVILL: biografía
At the 1983 world championships in Helsinki, ice dance history was made when all nine judges gave Jayne Torvill and Christopher Dean the perfect 6.0 for artistic impression with their interpretation of Barnum. Although other triumphs were ahead, it was perhaps this performance that first set Torvill and Dean apart from the rest of world’s ice dancers and raised them to a status of a sporting legend. Jayne Torvill, a clerk in a Nottingham insurance office, had won both a British junior and senior pairs’ championship with Michael Hutchison as her partner, but in 1975 she teamed up with Christopher Dean in ice dancing and together they developed the most memorable partnership in the history of the sport.
They won their first British title in 1978 and although they finished no higher than 11th at that year’s World Championships in Canada, a fortuitous meeting in Ottawa with the inspirational teacher Betty Calloway was a vital factor in the successes that were to come. Torvill and Dean improved to eighth place in the 1979 World Championships, then finished fourth in 1980 and took fifth place at the Lake Placid Olympics. In 1981 they won both the European and World Championships and defended both titles in 1982. They were forced to withdraw from the 1983 European Championships because of injury but won the world title for the third successive year and went to the1984 Olympics in Sarajevo as clear favorites. With a brilliant interpretation of Ravel’s Bolero, they matched their performance at the 1983 World Championships by drawing “sixes” for artistic impression from all nine judges, and their total of twelve “sixes” for the entire competition broke all previous records. Four weeks later, in Ottawa, they won their fourth successive world title and with a total of thirteen “sixes” they bettered the record they had set at the Olympics.
Torvill and Dean then turned professional but when the rules on professionals in the Olympics were relaxed, they returned to the Winter Olympics in 1994, winning a bronze medal. In September 1990, Jayne married Phil Christensen, a technician with the Phil Collins road show, with whom she later adopted two children.