Interview: Cecilia Baena (EO Skates)
Name: Baena Guyader
First name: Cecilia Margarita
Date of birth: 10 October 1986
Born in: Cartagena Colombia
Lives in: Bogota and Nantes
Begins to skate in: Cartagena club CODECAR
Job: Professional skater, working for Coldeportes(ministry of sport), owner of the club CMB
Strengths: sprint, moving in the pack and obstinate
Points to improve: endurance
Other sports: biking and running
The last film she saw: believes in hope
Favorite music: merengue music
Video games: She hates video games :-)
Readings: Her favorite writer are Angela Becerra, Paulo Coelho and Muriel Barbery
Like: reading, traveling, going to the movie house and coaching kids
Dislike: fake people, jealousy, injustice
Qualities: sociable, charismatic, determined
Faults: quick tempered
Club: CMB in Colombia and MSC in France
Best memory: The World Championship in Barrancabermeja (2000). She became World Champion at the age of 13 in her country in front of her family
Worth memory: The "Selectivo" for the national Colombian selection. She had a complete rupture of the quadriceps while that she was the first in the ranking .. She had to stop Sport for six months.
Languages: Spanish, English and more and more French :-)
Alcohol or fruit juice? Fruit juice definitely. She never drinks alcohol.
Ice-skating or roller-skating? rollers-skating
Road or track? Track
Sprint or marathon? Sprint
Hard or soft wheels? In between
Beach or montain? Beach
Morning or evening? morning
Cheese or dessert? dessert
Rap or techno? None
Soccer or rugby? None
Simple or double push? Simple
Prize list 2011
- 23 times World Champion
- The youngest World Champion of the history at the age of 13.
- Multiple PanAmerican Games winner
- Triple winner of the World Inline Cup 2008-2009-2010
- Double winner of the Swiss Inline Cup 2008-2009
- Double winner of the International Trophy of 3 Tracks 2009-2010
- Winner of Gross Gerau 2009
Hello Cecilia, you're quite famous in roller-skating... but we do not know anything about your past. When did you start skating?
I started when i was 3 years old at school as it was part of our sport program. We were skating twice a week at primary school. It was mentioned in the list at the beginning of the year that every kids needed a pair of skate. Then I start to go to the track and finally started in the club of Codecar in Cartagena when i was 5.
Did you try other roller skating practices?
No i didn't.
Why do you prefer speed-skating?
I like the feeling we get when we reach high speed. It's thrilling and I love moving myself into the pack when the races are going hard. I also love the mood around the track, with the crowd, everybody clapping and screaming at the kids... Well, this is how it is in Colombia !
What are the other sports that you like?
I love biking, I do bike 3 times a week and though do around 350 km weekly. I lately started running as Yann loves it but i'm not really keen on running. I also love watching baseball games as I used to go to every big game in the US. When I was young, my Dad became the official commentator for the Colombian TV... I do have great memory with the Yankee's players before and after each big game.
Did you try ice-skating?
Yeah but a long time ago when i was living in the US and racing for Hyper. It's been a long time since I didn't ride my blades.
What is your job? How do you earn your life?
I'm a professional skater and apart this I also work for the Sport Ministry here in Colombia being in charge of the social development in the poor areas and in charge of promoting the sport in the countryside.
Why did you left Powerslide and joined EO Skates?
I was looking for an ultimate challenge in my career. As Yann also decided to leave Powerslide it seemed to be the best option to me and I'm really happy with the choice we did. It's totally different from what we've been used to in the past but it's really exciting. I hope we're going to be successful and that we re going to have a winning winning partnership.
What are your goals for 2012?
I'm going to race here in Colombia to prepare for National Games which are kind of National Olympic Games with all the sports being represented at the event. As I'm working for the sport ministry and in charge of the management of the event, it's also gonna be a bit special when racing there. In Europe I'm gonna race various events like 3 tracks, German Inline Cup Races and Marathon French Cup. The schedule is not set yet but should basically be more or less this...
Is it complicated to train and work for the growth of your sport ?
Well it's always tough but as soon as you are well organized it makes it easier. I set my weekly schedule the week end before and if everything goes right it's pretty smooth...
How do you manage your schedule ?
I do train everyday twice from Tuesday till Saturday and Sunday, Monday I train once. In between I do work or rest when I've time.
You are working a lot to develop roller-skating in your country, can you tell us about your actions?
I've a really good image all over the country which allows me to promote a lot my sport everywhere I go. I'm the first one in my country to be able to promote inline skating outside of our little "world" around the track. I do advertising on TV with companies like Muneca, I do work for Caracol TV being the commentator for big events like Panam Games; I also do some promo events with REDBULL and COLDEPORTES and all this actions help to increase the popularity of our sport because every time the people or the media talk about me they also do talk about inline skating. In everybody's mind Chechy is a skater.
Is Roller-skating an important sport in Colombia ?
Well as a sport, it's much bigger than in France for instance but actually it's not so big. I mean people do know the sport pretty well but they do not know the skaters. I would say it's like handball or volleyball or swimming in France, everybody knows the sport but not so many know the people doing it.
The only big difference with Europe it that there is much more people competing. At nationals we are over 100 skaters per category, as if every national championship was kind of 3 Tracks. Here, in Bogota, there's around 15 tracks (not all perfect actually) which is more or less the amount of tracks in France, and the clubs are much bigger. I always compare the two clubs I know the best: My own one and MSC in France. Well even though we are at the beginning of the process in France we are only 10 while we are over 150 in CMB, so it's kind of a huge difference.
What is the place of roller-skating in the media in Colombia?
More or less the same as everywhere. We do not talk a lot about inline skating in the news paper or on TV, the only time we do talk about this is when held the World Championships or other big events like National games or Panam Games and that's all. They do talk a lot about me even though i'm not skating those big events anymore because as I said I built over the last 10 years a big image which allows me to be in the media.
How do you explain that south american skaters are so strong?
From what I know at least in France, they just train a lot more. I do not say it's better because most of the skaters are not going to school anymore which is not really good for their own professional future... but at least they are dedicated to what they do and are fully focused on trying to become the best one day.
You also have to understand that for some people is also a way to change a bit their life, whereas most of the european skaters do not need to be good at it to have a decent life.. that also explain why Colombian are way more motivated that you guys...
You should see the kids training... it's way different! I remember when my friend and president in France Nordine Saidou came here last month, he was so impressed to see how serious and dedicated were the kids going to the track on saturday and sunday morning at 6... Would you imagine that in France for instance? The parents would laugh at you if you would tell them training is at 6 in the morning.
I heard you participated to some people TV shows... can you tell us about it ? You're famous in your country?
Yeah I've been doing "la Granja" last year which is "La ferme celebrité" in France. I remained over than 5 weeks in the games before being fired.. It was a pretty nice experience and a really good opportunity to reinforce my image all over the country... Then, I've been invited to contest "Fear Factor" but unfortunately I was racing in Europe and my sponsors wouldn't let me go...
Saying i'm famous would be arrogant, but yeah people do know me the way they know Manaudou in France. People ask me for pictures and signature down the street or at the supermarket or anywhere...I'm not the superstar of Colombia like Shakira, Juanes or Juan P Montoya but people do know me as "la Chechy"
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