“I feel in control this time around,” the 23-year-old said after an impressive training session.
“I’m just more comfortable.”
Kerry’s Olympic debut ended in heartache, with the then 19-year-old admitting he was overawed by the scale of the event, the media attention, and the crowds.
“I just wasn’t ready for it all,” Kerry said. “It was like I just couldn’t process it properly.”
But it’s a very different Kerry who’s skated in to Korea and he’s ready for his chance at redemption.
“There’s not that initial spark of excitement like the first Olympics, but I prefer it this way. I know what I can enjoy and what I need to wait for until after the event,” he said.
“Last time I spent my first few days running around, checking out all the venues, trying to meet everyone and get to all the events. This time I realise there’s no rush – I can do all that after my competition.”
The new and improved figure skater has also proved he isn’t scared of big decisions, changing coaches to Russian Nikolai Morozov just four months ago.
“I’ve made some big changes, but I had to,” Kerry said.
“I feel good about everything I’ve done. I’m in a good head space.
“My training has completely changed and I’ve learnt how much dedication it takes in all areas of life to be an elite athlete. When I went to the first Olympics I was like, ‘I go to the rink, I warm up, I skate, maybe I cool down and then I leave’. Now I know how important off-ice fitness is, I watch my diet, and I don’t go out all the time. I’m much more committed this time.”
He’s also committed to some of his favourite mottos, such as “pain is only temporary”, with the 23-year-old sporting numerous fresh tattoos.
“Since Sochi I’ve got, I think, maybe twelve tattoos,” Kerry laughed.
“I just used them as a way to remind myself of what’s important to me, and to keep me motivated to keep going.
“My favourite is the one on my forearm, it’s got four lines and the initials of all my sisters. My family is important, I always remember where I come from.”
And there’ll be plenty of family support in the stands – his mother, Monica MacDonald, who was her son’s former coach and a Winter Olympian is already here and his father will fly over in a few days.
“It’s great knowing they’re here and I have that piece of home with me,” Kerry said.
“Mum is the reason I started skating and dad has always been a big part of my life, so it means a lot that they’ll be here.”
While Kerry pushed hard to include three quad jumps in recent competitions, he plans on scaling it back for these Games, focusing instead on having two clean skates.
“I know I’m more than capable of doing the three quads but I know the best thing for myself will be to take that bit of stress off and just skate a really strong free program,” he said.
“I know what I’m focused on – I’m here to do a job.”
Kerry will skate his short program on Day 7 (February 16), and his free program on Day 8 (February 17).