My parents taught me math at home from elementary school on using Chinese textbooks. It was much harder than the math I was getting in school. For example, I started learning factoring in third grade.
—Yi Sun, 2006 US IMO team
You work on problems and you develop a feel for the subject and then it becomes a lot easier to make progress. If you’ve done a lot of problems, you get better.
—Alex Zhai, 2006 US IMO team
I’ve wanted this for a long time. Since eighth grade I was like, “Okay, I’m going to make the US IMO team some year.” I was really happy when it happened, that I finally made it. This was what I’d been striving for for quite a long time.
—Arnav Tripathy, 2006 US IMO team
I’ll try to get a gold medal and I hope everybody gets it too, and we’ll come out with six gold medals hopefully, and we’ll have fun.
—Ryan Ko, 2006 US IMO team
I don’t do mathematics because it’s mathematics. I do it because of the astounding connections and interpretations and general creativity that it allows.
—Zach Abel, 2006 US IMO team
I have this theory that the smarter a mathematician is, the less they work, or the less they like to work. But I don’t know if it’s true; I haven’t asked any actual mathematicians how lazy they are.
—Zeb Brady, 2006 US IMO team