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Brian Joubert is no Indiana Jones

At Least When it Comes to Snakes

by Alexandra Stevenson

(16 November 2012) Paris, France

French heartthob Brian Joubert revealed today in a news conference at the Bercy Palais OmniSport, that he's not just a skater. He's an animal lover who supports quite a few pets in his hometown of Poitiers, including a cache of six snakes. But no cats!

The 28-year-old, who, in 2007 became the first French man to win a World Figure Skating Championship since Alain Calmat was crowned in 1965, had an absolutely disastrous time in the last Olympics placing a miserable 16th.

This season he is upset because his hometown rink closed for major renovations. Now he commutes weekly to Paris where he trains with Annick Dumond. It's a move he long resisted. He's very much a hometown boy.

He travels home every weekend. "I have to," he said Thursday. "I have a lot of animals to take care of." Of course, he also misses his mother's home cooking. "But it is better I do not eat so much, better for the skating. I have lost several kilos."

And he misses his dependents. "I have two dogs, one small, one large. I have parrots. And I have my snakes. They are small but they are growing. But I can't have cats. They would eat the snakes."

He is competing in his first Grand Prix event since he was fourth in the 2010 Cup of China. He should have skated in that country's Grand Prix again two weeks ago, "But I got ill and had to withdraw. I was very prepared for it. But since then I have lost training time and am now not so ready."

Friday, he will perform to Genesis by Justice and Aerodynamic by Daft Punk. The snakes will be watching on television.

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