TODAY   |  January 21, 2010

Speedskater Hedrick anticipates Olympic comeback

Jan. 21: After the games in Torino, Olympic speedskater Chad Hedrick contemplated leaving the sport. He tells TODAY that he is looking forward to competing in Vancouver.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> can we bring in a great olympian? chad hedrick , a speed skater, won a silver and bronze medal in torino. now he hopes to get back to the podium in vancouver . chad, nice to see you.

>> nice to see you.

>> how have you been?

>> great. excited to get back on the ice and show the world what we have in vancouver .

>> chad did something kind of unusual, i think, for an olympic athlete. after torino, and he was so successful in torino, you took eight months off or something like that, and actually gave thought to not coming back to speed skating .

>> yeah. you know, after you accomplish your main goal in life, you think, what do i need to do? you know, is there more for me? and it took me a while to figure out that i wanted to come back and be part of the team in vancouver again, and i'm so excited not only to have the opportunity to win a gold medal one time, but to do it two times, it's incredible.

>> and you're going to be back with your new family. you got married after torino to lindsey, right, is your wife's name? little girl , hadley.

>> yeah. i have a 10-month-old baby and my wife lindsey. we've been married just under two years and it's been incredible. so, now i've got two new fans and i'm just stoked to go back and represent the u.s. again.

>> you already got a little pair of skates for her, have you?

>> we're going to hide the skates for a bit, you know. it's been a long ride for me. so, hopefully, she wants to play tennis or something like that.

>> stay warm, something warmer.

>> yeah.

>> meantime, you have switched up your training. there's some changes you made. how's that working out for you?

>> well, my training, i changed to a new coach, derek carr, who won the olympics in 2002 , is a great friend of mine. he understands my background, coming from the sport of inline skating , and i'm just ecstatic at the immateriprovements i'm making on a daily basis, and i think i'm headed in the right direction, and that's the most important thing right now.

>> you were so gracious with your time for us in torino, so we look forward to seeing you in vancouver , chad.

>> it was great and i hope to have another experience like that.

>> have your medals at 4:00