Daisuke Takahashi admitted that rapidly improving young teammate Yuzuru Hanyu had helped inspire him towards silver at the world figure skating championships. National champion Takahashi, 26, finished runner-up behind two-time winner Patrick Chan of Canada on the final day of competition on Saturday with 17-year-old Hanyu taking a surprise third.
It was the first time that Japan have had two skaters on the men’s podium, and Takahashi, the first Japanese man to win an Olympic medal with bronze in Vancouver and a world title in 2010, said that he had not wanted to be overshadowed by Hanyu. “I heard the crowd cheering and knew Yuzuru had been perfect. I said ‘ok I have to do well. I can’t let him beat me’,” said Takahashi.
“It’s like a race trying not to be left out. Yuzuru and the other skaters can still improve in the future. “Practising with Yuzuru in this competition I really feel he’s going to be a real strong rival…”