SOCHI – Rest assured: Jeremy Abbott is sleeping well at night.
The American who had a dismal performance at the 2010 Vancouver Games said he’s brought his own mattress to the Sochi Games, righting something that went very wrong for him on his way to a ninth-place finish in Vancouver.
“I brought a queen-sized air mattress,” Abbott told NBCOlympics.com after his practice Monday afternoon at the Iceberg Skating Palace. “I did not do well on the twin bed in Vancouver.”
“[The mattress] is really high; it’s a legitimate bed,” Abbott, 28, said. “Getting it here was a pain; it weighs 25 pounds. I literally packed a suitcase just for the bed, but it’s definitely worth it.”
Abbott has said in the past that he suffered for much of his career from not being able to sleep through the night, a struggle he said had mostly subsided in an October interview. Abbott said in Sochi that Vancouver was no different from aforementioned struggles.
“I toss and turn a lot. For the two and a half weeks I was in Vancouver I didn’t sleep one full night because I was always afraid that I was going to roll off the bed.”
Abbott rolled through his practice session Monday, landing his opening quad-triple combination once in his warm-up and again in his short-program run through. The veteran won the U.S. Championships last month with a record-setting short program, holding off a surging Jason Brown in the free skate.
“It was a good practice. I ran my short program for stamina and it went really well,” Abbott said. “The quad felt good.”
Abbott said the ice in Sochi had a lot of spring, something he liked.
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After winning at Nationals in 2010, Abbott said he felt crushed by expectations leading into the Vancouver Games. This time around the Olympics feel shockingly “normal,” he said.
“I never in my life thought I would say this, but it feels all normal, all natural,” Abbott said, laughing. “It’s kind of bizarre to be at the Olympics and think, ‘Yeah, this is normal.'”
“I’m extremely comfortable here. I brought a lot of stuff from home to make sure that I had all of my creature comforts that I would have normally. I think I did it all the right way.”