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Carolina Kostner was born in Bolzano, Italy on 8 February 1987 and is an Italian figure skater. She is the 2008 World silver medalist, the 2005 World bronze medalist, the 2007, 2008 and 2010 European champion, the 2007-08 & 2008-09 Grand Prix Final Bronze Medalist , the 2003 World Junior Bronze medalist and the 2002-2003 Junior Grand Prix Final silver medalist.As of April 2010, she was ranked 6th in the world by the International Skating Union (ISU).
She began skating at age 4. Her mother, Patrizia, was a nationally ranked figure skater in the 1970s. Her father, Erwin, played ice hockey for the Italian national team at the World Championships and Olympic Games and presently coaches ice hockey teams. She has two brothers who play ice hockey in Germany. Kostner is the cousin and godchild of Isolde Kostner, a silver medalist in alpine skiing at the 2002 Winter Olympics.
Kostner speaks Ladin (a Rhaeto-Romanic language), German, Italian, English and French. In the fall of 2007, she enrolled at the University of Turin. Kostner has been considered an idol star in Italy. Occasionally, she becomes paparazzi target.
When her home rink closed in 2001, Kostner chose to work with Michael Huth in Oberstdorf, Germany, about a four-hour drive from her home in Bolzano. She made her senior debut in the 2002-2003 season, finishing 4th at the European championships. Later that year, she became the first Italian skater to medal at Junior Worlds, winning a bronze.
In the 2003-2004 season, Kostner finished 5th at the 2004 European Figure Skating Championships and at the 2004 World Figure Skating Championships. In the 2004-2005, she finished 7th at the 2005 European Figure Skating Championships before beating Michelle Kwan for the bronze medal at the 2005 World Figure Skating Championships in Moscow.
Kostner won her first European medal in 2006, and was chosen to be flag bearer for the host Italian team during the opening ceremony of the 2006 Winter Olympics. At the Olympics, she placed 9th. The next month, at the 2006 World Figure Skating Championships, she placed 12th.
Kostner missed the 2006-2007 Grand Prix season due to injury. She won the Italian national title and went on to win her first European title at the 2007 European Figure Skating Championships. She improved on her Worlds results by placing 6th at the 2007 Worlds.
During the 2007-2008 season, Kostner medaled at both her Grand Prix events and went to the Grand Prix Final for the first time. At that event, she won the bronze medal. She won her second European title at the 2008 European Figure Skating Championships after winning the short program and placing second in the free skate. At the 2008 World Figure Skating Championships, Kostner won the short program and placed third in the free skate, winning the silver medal overall.
Kostner had a difficult 2008-2009 season, finishing off the podium at her first Grand Prix event, 2008 Skate Canada, and then losing her European title to Laura Lepistö, and placing twelfth at the 2009 World Figure Skating Championships after a disastrous long program in which she failed to land a single clean triple.
Kostner's assigned events for the 2009-10 Grand Prix series were the Trophée Eric Bompard and the 2009 Cup of China. She placed sixth in both. In January 2010, She won the gold medal at the 2010 European Figure Skating Championships, held in Tallinn, Estonia. She then competed at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games where she placed sixteenth overall after having some mistakes in jumping elements in her free skate. She finished the season competing at the 2010 World Figure Skating Championships, which took place in Turin, Italy. She placed sixth at the event.
In June 2009, Kostner left her long-time coach Michael Huth. Her new coach was California-based Frank Carroll, along with Christa Fassi. In the middle of the 2009-2010 season, she left Frank Carroll and stayed with Christa Fassi alongside Eduardo de Bernardis.