Dean left school at age 16 and joined the Nottingham Police Force in 1974. It was challenging for him to undergo police cadet training, as his schedule often clashed with his skating training sessions. Thus Torvill and Dean had to practise during his off-hours. These difficult times brought them closer and gave them a sense of discipline that was to prove vital throughout their career.
By 1980 Torvill and Dean had progressed to not only become British National Dance Champions but were in medal contention in international competitions as well. It was then that Chris realised he could no longer balance his skating and police careers, and he resigned from the police force. Torvill soon left her job as well. Dean also served as the chief choreographer for the Torvill and Dean team.
Torvill and Dean's free program at the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo, performed to the music of Maurice Ravel's Boléro, became world famous. They received nine 6.0 marks for artistic impression, (three more for technical merit for a total of twelve 6.0 marks) the highest possible score and the only time ever that an all-perfect score was achieved. It was one of the most popular achievements in the history of British sport, watched by a British television audience of 24 million people. Since the time limit was four minutes and ten seconds and their music was four minutes 28 seconds, they moved their bodies to the music for 18 seconds before starting to skate.