Canadian fan favorite Christopher Mabee, who was to launch his season at Skate America this month, has pulled the plug on competing anywhere this year, but vows to return with a vengeance for the 2009-10 Olympic season.
This week, the ISU scratched Mabee's name from his two Grand Prix assignments, after the skater advised Skate Canada that his heart just wasn't in it.
"I had a meeting with my coaches [Doug Leigh and Lee Barkell] about a week-and-a-half ago and we just decided right now that for me -- mentally, physically, everything -- it would be best for me if I took a break and re-evaluated some things and tried to find a bit of motivation because it's been lacking ever since nationals pretty much," said Mabee by cell-phone as he travelled from his family home in Tillsonburg, Ontario, to conduct a youth skating development seminar in the Toronto area.
"My motivation and my drive was really low, the drive to get on the ice and get run-throughs done. We just thought it would be beneficial to take a little bit of time off, reflect on my career and re-evaluate where I want to be. I want to make sure for 2010 that I'm in an environment where I'm going to be motivated and ready to go for the entire year.
"With the Olympic year being so important, I want to make sure I'm in the right mindframe so I can give it my all for that last final year," said the 23-year-old athlete, who intends to train enough through the year to keep his triple jumps sharp.