Jump to content
OriginalCyn

Figure Skating

Recommended Posts

Starting this thread as I'm hoping there are others who enjoy it as much as I do.  I fell in love with figure skating the first time I watched it, which was the Innsbruck Olympics in 1976, most famously remembered in the USA when Dorothy Hamill won the Gold Medal in the Ladies event and her now-immortalized haircut.

While I was impressed with watching her, what got me hooked on this sport wasn't watching her skate.  Our new neighbors had moved here from Canada, and while I was at their house playing with their son, his mother was watching the Men's competition.  , and while we were futzing around with Legos, I happened to glance at the TV.  At that point of my life, I was heavily involved in ballet, and to this day I can still recall that moment -- even though I knew nothing about ice skating, I felt an absolute thrill through my body  as I could tell that what I was watching was something extremely special.  The skater, I now know, was the amazing John Curry.  I'd never heard of him before, but as my fandom of figure skating grew, I learned just how exquisite of a skater he was and the huge impact he had on the sport. 

From that moment, I was addicted to watching it whenever it was on TV.  Back in the 1994, the "whack on the knee," and then the tragic and untimely death of Pairs skater Sergei Grinkov in 1995, generated immense interest in the sport here in America, but now, following the retirement of Michelle Kwan and Sasha Cohen, which resulted in the end of American dominance in the Ladies' discipline, television coverage in the US has all but evaporated, with the Winter Olympics games being the exception.

For some ungodly reason, the Idiots In Charge of programming seem to think that the other three disciplines are irrelevant and have been treated like red-headed stepchildren, especially after ABC's contract with the ISU ended and NBC took over.  It's a cryin'-ass shame, because WRT American skaters, there have been absolutely stellar athletes in Mens and Ice Dance (sadly, not so much where Pairs are concerned).  During the run up to the Vancouver Olympics in 2010, the mainstream Sports coverage treated Evan Lysacek was like an afterthought even after winning the Mens event at the 2009 World Championships - the first Gold Medal for the US since Brian Boitano back in 1988 - and Johnny Weir was known by the American public more for his outrageous persona than for his gorgeous skating. 

Thanks to Ice Network and the ability to watch Eurosport and other European and Asian countries' TV coverage via live streams on the Internet, it's now possible to watch competitions in their entirety rather than the limited, US-centric broadcast, made even worse thanks to the Three Stooges that NBC insists on foisting on viewers, namely 1) Scott Hamilton, who screeches like he's passing a kidney stone each time a skater does a jump, 2) Sandra Bezic, who brings less than nothing to the table as an analyst, and 3) the utterly worthless Tom Hammond, who wears more makeup than a drag queen and whose "color commentary" consists of nattering on about shit that no one I've ever talked to gives a flying fuck to learn. n7

It never ceases to amaze me that whenever the issue of the declining popularity of figure skating in the US comes up, TPTB always claim that casual viewers don't/can't understand the "new" judging system (that's now been in place for over a decade) and use that "reasoning" to justify the limited amount time allotted to the broadcasting of competitions as well as airing them one to two weeks after the event has taken place (case in point: Grand Prix coverage for the past 6 years).   Call me kooky, but it seems to me that during a skater's performance of a program, it would make sense to have the commentators give a detailed explanation, as each element is executed, of the Level and GOE (Grade of Execution) it is likely to receive.  Instead, the Three Stooges blather throughout performances about crap that is completely irrelevant to what's taking place on the ice, such as a skater's hobbies, his or her high school or college GPA, favorite food(s), their parents' occupations -- I mean, seriously, NBC?  Buy a goddamn clue.

With 1) Meryl Davis and Charlie White making history by winning the first US Gold Medal in Ice Dance (which, to give credit where it's due, did get decent coverage during the Sochi Games), the many interviews and appearances on talk shows that resulted from it, capitalizing on their post-Olympic popularity by competing on DWTS, 2) Gracie Gold, Ashley Wagner, and Polina Edmunds looking like they will likely be legitimate podium contenders in the next quad and at the 2018 Olympics in South Korea, and 3) the unexpected yet well-deserved popularity of Jason Brown following Boston Nationals this past January, there may be a glimmer of hope that figure skating can reclaim the popularity it once held in the US.

Now that I got that rant out of my system, lol.......the World Championships, held in Japan, ended yesterday......So much to talk about!!  Among other things:  - A new Ice Dance Champion for the first time in four years; - Jeremy Abbott's Redemption (in more ways than one :P ); - The Battle Between Machida and Hanyu (and Hanyu doing what hasn't been done since Yagudin in 2002); - Ashley, Polina, and Gracie; - Savchenko and Szolkovy winning Number Five; - Iliynkh and Katsalopov snatching defeat from the jaws of victory yet again, Weaver and Poje's rise as Canada's new #1 Ice Dance team, and Cappellini and Lanotte becoming the most unexpected of World Champions; - the entire Ladies' Podium winning on the strength of their Short Programs; ...and so much more!!

Also, in other news, there's I/K splitting up, Aliona Savchenko taking a new partner starting next season, the blatant bullshit PCS judging since the start of 2014, and lastly, Speedy's plan to try and eliminate Short Programs (just how much more can he do to try and destroy the sport before he steps down as ISU President?!).

- So much to discuss and snark about!!

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

Glad to see this thread going even if the skating season is over. However, the next couple months are always interesting as skaters retire or get new partners. Maybe we can finally keep US Pair skaters together for more than three years.

I'm one of the refugees from TWoP. I'm the one who always posts the US broadcast/cable/icenetwork schedules before each major event. I'll continue to do so unless you all here would prefer I don't.

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post

I have been checking here for days to see if there would be a figure skating thread started. I loved going to TWOP for skating discussion! Y'all are knowledgeable! :)

Share this post


Link to post

No April Fool's joke here.....pairs team Vera Bazarova and Yuri Larionov have split up.

This has been confirmed by their coach,Nina Mozer, in this article (in Russian) http://itar-tass.com/sport/1087528, and on Bazarova's VK page, Vera posted the following:  "I am grateful to Yuri for everything he has done for me.  I did not leave him in a difficult situation....I am sorry, but he made the decision himself." 

The gist of the article states that the decision was made following the FS at Worlds.  Larionov will remain with Mozer as his coach and they are already have a possible new partner lined up for him.  Bazarova will have to find a new partner and coach.  

To say that Mozer and Bazarova did not get along would be a gross understatement -- Mozer was interviewed following their free skate, and she was so disgusted with Vera that she wouldn't even mention her by name and referred to her as "that girl."  

Share this post


Link to post

Is anyone else annoyed that NBC will be showing Worlds TWO whole weeks after the actual event happened?  I don't have Universal Sports on my cable system anymore, so I've seen most of the programs on YT by now.  I wonder who will be doing commentary - S&S or J&T.

I am kind of going through withdrawal now that it's the off season and we won't have any major competitions until the GP series starts in October.  Still waiting to hear the retirement announcements - wondering if Virtue/Moir and Mao Asada are really retiring.

I am looking forward to next season and the development of some of the younger skaters who have come up and made a splash, especially the Russian ladies.  I wish the US had such a deep talent pool.

Are there any skaters that you are looking forward to seeing next season?

ETA:  OriginalCyn, just read your essay/rant and agree with 100% of it, especially about Scott Hamilton.

Edited by apgold
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I'm actually looking forward to watching the US ladies develop.  I think Gracie and Polina have a lot of potential. I'm not sure what to think about Ashley anymore.

The women's competition at Worlds, in my opinion, was boring. I may be sick of all of those routines after seeing them multiple times at the Olympics, Nationals, Grand Prix, etc.  I thought Kostner was majorly overscored in the LP.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

Re: the US ladies

I thought Ashley and Polina were both amazing at Worlds.  It was Ashley's best performance in quite a while, yet it only gave her 7th place b/c she didn't do the 3F/3T.  I was pleased she replaced it w/the 2ax/3T and she powered through her program.  I think she really wants to improve her jumping technique and the UK commentators mentioned her jumps looked much cleaner and she only two footed the last loop.  However, her stock has fallen since nationals and she is being judged as such.  Polina has grown on me since nationals.  She is an excellent jumper and she has that ballerina thing going. Her PCS can only rise as she matures.

I just can't warm up to Gracie and while Frank Carroll may have polished her a bit, her jumps seem to be getting smaller and she made mistakes.  And on a superficial level, I really dislike her bun - the braided updo she wore last year was more flattering but I guess Frank nixed it, b/c ladies don't wear braids, lol.

I am still rooting for Mirai to remain competitive (she has been working on some amazing Yulia like spins), but her stock is also down, so it will be an uphill battle for her.

 

I thought Kostner was majorly overscored in the LP.

I agree. There is no way her PCS should've been 20 points higher than her TES with two pops and a fall.  Perhaps they were giving her a retirement gift.

To answer my earlier question about Mao retiring, she is saying that she's 50/50 about it, meaning she doesn't want to make a decision right now.  She didn't look like someone who was ready to retire at Worlds, despite it being a long season for her.

Edited by apgold
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

So glad to see skating here - another TWoP refugee…

Any word on which team we get whenever they finally air Worlds?

Share this post


Link to post

Hey OriginalCyn! When I saw your intro I desperately wanted to PM you but alas, that feature isn't enabled here. So I'm hoping that either you or another skating enthusiast will remember a certain performance from years ago that has always haunted me. The problem is, I don't remember the couple who skated it.

I'm fairly certain it was an ice dance routine and the couple was portaying a man who loses his wife/lover to Death. They used a black shroud as a prop and I seem to remember the commentators criticizing them for that (was that breaking the rules?) but I loved the performane. It was dramatic, emotional and memorable. Fast forward to the YouTube era and I have searched high and low for evidence that I didn't imagine that performance so here I am, hoping you all can set me straight. Thanks!

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

That's it!!!  COESpiral, you are a lifesaver.  I was driving myself crazy looking for that performance and nothing I Googled was getting me anywhere.  It's just as beautiful as I remember.

Share this post


Link to post

Another TWOP refugee - so glad to see a figure skating thread here!

I was really surprised by Carolina's bronze - the first minute in and I thought she was done. I actually like her, peg legs and all, so I'm not sad she went out on a high note.

Patrick Chan has also been equivocating about whether to retire so it will be interesting to see who is still in come Fall!

Share this post


Link to post

This and that

Canadian Men's skater Patrick Chan said he was uncertain about his future plans in an interview earlier this week on a Canadian talk show.

"My whole life has been in four-year cycles [preparing for the Vancouver and Sochi Olympics]. I have an open book now," said Chan. "I'm just really relieved and can look at the next part of my life, the next chapter. Whether it's continuing skating or going on to something else, I don't know."

Evan Lysacek told NBC that he is pain free for the first time since August and has been doing jumps, including triples, in training the last four weeks. "Whatever capacity I'm skating at, I don't really know right now, but it's nice to be back," said Lysacek.

Lysacek isn't ready to say if or when we will return to competition, though. "Definitely a little premature for that," he replied to the question. "But I'm back on the ice, looking a dong some shows and dipping my toes back in the water."

Lysacek also stated that, after watching the error-filled Men's Free Skate at the Olympics, the judging system should be altered to not weigh quadruple jumps so heavily. "There was a lot of attempted difficulty. I think, overall, things have to change. They must know they have to change the system now. The dial was moved a bit too far after Vancouver with rewarding attempted quads. So I think they'll really have to take a hard look at how they're scoring it - again

Mirai Nagasu plans to continue her skating career; she is going to be performing with Stars On Ice this spring and is already working on competitive programs for the 2014-15 season. "I've found that I really still enjoy skating. I'm not really committed to anything yet, but I hope that I can skate for myself," said Nagasu.

She spent time in February and March working with coach Tom Zakrajsek in Colorado Springs but said she is not ready to commit to any coach as of  yet. She also has been working with Adam Rippon to craft the two programs for the upcoming season and is looking forward to unveiling them in competition. Her ultimate goal is to make the U.S. Olympic team in 2018.

The NBC Sports channel will present the Best of the U.S. Awards Show, the U.S. Olympic Committee's inaugural event honoring outstanding U.S. performances from the Sochi 2014 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. The show will air on Monday, April 7, at 7 p.m. (Eastern time) on NBCSN. Evan Lysacek and Michelle Kwan are among the presenters.

The awards being presented are: Best Male/Female Olympian, Best Male/Female Paralympian, Team of the Olympic/Paralympic Games, Moment of the Olympic/Paralympic Games, Fan of the Games, and the USG Building Dreams Award, which honors an individual who has gone above and beyond his/her support of Team USA athletes.

Johnny Weir and Tara Lipinski will host red carpet coverage at the event.

A nominating committee consisting of the U.S. Olympic Committee, athlete and media representatives selected the finalist for the individual athlete and team categories, as well as the Moment of the Games, based on nominations from each National governing body. Awards were determined via fan voting on Facebook.

Share this post


Link to post

Hey OriginalCyn! When I saw your intro I desperately wanted to PM you but alas, that feature isn't enabled here. So I'm hoping that either you or another skating enthusiast will remember a certain performance from years ago that has always haunted me. The problem is, I don't remember the couple who skated it.

I'm fairly certain it was an ice dance routine and the couple was portaying a man who loses his wife/lover to Death. They used a black shroud as a prop and I seem to remember the commentators criticizing them for that (was that breaking the rules?) but I loved the performane. It was dramatic, emotional and memorable. Fast forward to the YouTube era and I have searched high and low for evidence that I didn't imagine that performance so here I am, hoping you all can set me straight. Thanks!

absolutqt, COESpiral beat me to it (haven't been here in a couple of days -- been watching Orphan Black nonstop in preparation for season two (shameless plug for that show))....Klimova and Ponomarenko are my favorites of the Pre-COP era -- edges and glide to die for, as well as body placement, unison, finishing...absolutely breathtaking to watch.

RE: the Ladies at Worlds...what cheeses me off is that the FS was a disaster for all of the women on the podium; they all won on the merit of their short programs, but I'm also chapped about the blatant overscoring in PCS and GOE for those error-filled programs, not one of which entice me to watch a second time.

Share this post


Link to post

Jeremy Abbott has told icenetwork.com that he is wavering on his decision to retire from competitive skating. Abbott said he learned “so much about myself as a person and a competitor this year, more than I have the rest of my career. I feel like I want another chance to utilize that knowledge and give it another go.”

Abbott added that his coach Yuka Sato is supportive of whatever he decides. Sato told him not to make a decision now, to think about it and take his time before making up his mind. Abbott plans to take some time off after his Stars On Ice tour to rest and think about what he wants to do.

Abbott, who has shows scheduled during the spring and summer, also is planning to have programs choreographed for those shows which can ultimately be turned into competitive programs, especially since vocals will be allowed next season for single and Pairs skaters. That would help him prepare for the season if he decides to continue to skate competitively.

Whatever he decides, Abbott said, he wants to continue to be involved in skating, feeling he has a lot of knowledge that he would like to pass down to future generations of skaters.

Share this post


Link to post

I'm glad to see other TWOPers here! I hope this becomes a similar great place for figure skating discussion.

I just finished watching the Worlds today after being out of town for a week. I disagree that the all the women on the podium won with their short programs. Julia and Carolina struggled, but Mao was great with only one minor error. I was happy for her.

And in random snarky comments, it looks like Meaghan Duhamel got the memo about her odd Olympic hair. Much better hair here and a bronze medal to boot. Well done!

Share this post


Link to post

Johnny just tweeted that he, Tara and"Sir Terrence Gannon" will be commentating on Worlds. Tara instagrammed a pic of them all.

Share this post


Link to post

The Japanese held another retirement ceremony, this time for Ladies skater Akiko Suzuki and Men's skater Nobunari Oda. Suzuki had announced her intention to retire from competitive skating at the end of this season back in October, and Oda announce his retirement after coming in 4th at the Japanese Nationals in December.

Maybe the USFSA should have retirement ceremonies - a nice speech, a little video and some lovely parting gifts. That would make it tougher for skaters to change their mind about competing after saying they were going to retire, especially if they had to give back the gifts. Just saying...

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

 

Maybe the USFSA should have retirement ceremonies - a nice speech, a little video and some lovely parting gifts. That would make it tougher for skaters to change their mind about competing after saying they were going to retire, especially if they had to give back the gifts. Just saying...

Great idea (Jeremy, cough cough).  I wonder if Fumie Suguri will ever participate in one of those Japanese ceremonies.   Interesting that Mao didn't participate, so I think she may be back again next season.

I watched the SOI/Worlds coverage from NBC - there was a bit much D/W and hardly any Mirai, but I understand that people want to see the OGM's skate.  Nice to see Jason's SOI version of Riverdance, but I think it loses something w/o some of the harder jump combos.

Re: Worlds.  I was interested to see who they would show from the Top men's and ladies - I was kind of surprised that Max Aaron wasn't even shown, nor Kovtun.  

Edited by apgold

Share this post


Link to post

U.S. Figure Skating will elect a President at its annual meeting this week, and this election has turned into quite a controversial matter.

 

One of the people seeking to become President is Ron Pfenning, who was a leader among the group trying to form the World Skating Federation in 2003. The WSF was an attempt to split the Figure Skating federations away from the ISU in order to make them independent from the Speed Skating federations and allow the sport to have more autonomous and targeted governing. Those of you who attended the 2003 Worlds in Washington D.C. might remember the group demonstrating and seeking signatures on a petition outside the arena. Pfenning was sanctioned by the ISU and basically kicked out of the organization.

Pfenning's candidacy is causing quite a stir. Morry Stillwell, a past president of U.S. Figure Skating, wrote a rather scathing letter against Pfenning's campaign for office, stating that Pfenning's past involvement with the WSF shows he can't be trusted, and that Pfenning would hurt U.S. Figure Skating because he couldn't be credentialed at any ISU events. The ISU also has let it be known that it would not be happy with Pfenning's election as the president of the U.S. figure skating federation, although it can't legally do anything to bar his election.

 

On the other side, Pfenning has supporters who feel U.S. Figure Skating needs some "shaking up" to make the sport more attractive to the public and to improve the quality of the sport. Pfenning says that he has received the support of Ben Wright, a long-time and very respected member of U.S. Figure Skating, among others. Dick Button has also written a letter supporting Pfenning. Janet Lynn, former U.S. Ladies Champion, has written an Open Inquiry to the candidates seeking the presidency of U.S. Figure Skating, asking them to state how they would improve the sport in a number of areas.

 

Samuel Auxier, currently the 1st Vice- President of the USFSA, is the organization's endorsed candidate for President.

.

U.S. Figure Slating's 2014 Governing Council Meeting will take place in Seattle on May 1-3. It should be quite an interesting meeting.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

I'm not sure what the rules here are about double posts, but the ISU Technical Committee has issued some major scoring changes so I thought I'd risk a warning to post them because these address some of the issues that had a lot of discussion during the Olympics.

 

JUMPS

 

1. A jump which is under-rotated will have its base value reduced by 30% and receive negative GOEs. In the case of a flip or a lutz, an edge call will result in the base value being reduced by 30% and will receive negative GOEs. In the case of a flip or a lutz, if  there is an edge call in addition to an under-rotation, the base value will be reduced by 50% and receive negative GOEs.

 

To clarify, if a skater under-rotates a jump, he or she will no longer receive the full base value for that jump; the base value will be only 70% of what they would have received if they had done the jump properly and negative GOEs will lower the points awarded even more.

To give an example of how this would work: if a skater under-rotates a quad toe, the base value for the quad toe would be reduced from 10.3 to 7.2. The points awarded for the jump would be reduced even further - from 7.2 to 5.2 points - if the judges gave the jump GOEs of -2.

In the case of a flip or a lutz, if the jump is merely WEEDed (wrong edge entry deduction) OR under-rotated, the base value is reduced by 30% and receives negative GOEs. However, if the jump is WEEDed AND under-rotated, the base value for the jump is reduced by 50% and receives negative GOEs.

Falls are not mentioned specifically in these changes, but since falls on jumps are almost always the result of an under-rotation, a fall usually will result in the base value of the jump being reduced by 30% and then more even points will be deducted due to the negative GOEs.

 

2. Jumps with less than 1.5 revolutions in both the Short and Free Programs of Seniors and Juniors will have no value.

 

In the past, when a skater popped a jump, the skater still received some points. A popped jump would be given a single jump base value, and even with the negative GOEs, a skater would end up with getting something like 0.8 points for the jump.Now when a skater pops a jump, the jump will be considered "not done" and no points will be awarded.

 

3. In the Short Program, jumps which do not satisfy the requirement will have no value.

 

To give an example here, in the Short Program, the Senior Men are required to do a either triple or double axel. If a Men's skater does a single axel in the Short, the jump will be considered as not satisfying the requirement and no points will be awarded for the jump, even if it is done properly.

 

SPINS

 

Any spin in which one of the requirements is not fulfilled will have its base value reduced by 30% and receive negative GOEs. Any spin in which two or more of the elements are not fulfilled will have its base value reduced by 50% and receive negative GOEs.

 

On the judges sheets, an "s" sign will indicate one of the requirements of the spin was not fulfilled and the base value reduced by 30%; an "ss" sign will indicate two or more of the requirements of the spin were not fulfilled and the base value reduced by 50%.

 

PAIRS

 

1. Both partners must fulfill the requirements listed above for solo jumps or spins.

 

2. Three basic positions by both partners are mandatory for a combination pair spin. Failure of one or both partners to do three different positions will result in a 30% reduction in the base value of the spin.

 

An "a" sign on the judges sheet will indicate that this requirement was not fulfilled and the base value of the combination pair spin reduced by 30%.

 

3. Death Spiral

 

a. Change of arm hold by the Lady or the Man is allowed but is no longer a Level feature.
In other words, changing hands during a death spiral will no longer increase the Level (degree of difficulty) for the element.

b. Change of pivot is considered as the end of the death spiral. This means that if the man changes his pivot foot during the death spiral, anything done after the change of feet is not considered.

 

4. Lifts: Features such as change of hold, Lady's position, or rotational direction will not be award if the change is interrupted by a carry. In other words, a Pair can't do a lift, then do a carry and then go back to doing a lift. All the elements of the lift must be completed before the carry (we're looking at you, Duhamel and Radford).

 

In addition to the above, the Technical Committee wants to make sure that Pairs and Dance are distinct disciplines and the lines between the two aren't blurred. As a result, they have added the following for Pairs:

 

1. Step Sequence - Twizzles should not be included in the Step Sequence.

 

2. Small Lifts (small lifts are when the man lifts the lady off the ice but his arms do not extend above his shoulders).

a. Small lifts performed in isolation are limited to one in the Short Program and two in the Free Skate. However, small lifts are unrestricted when used in preparation for a listed element in the Short Program or Free Skate (e.g. before a throw or a twist).

b. Violation of this restriction will result in a 1.0 point deduction per program according to the opinion of the referee and the majority of the panel. No deduction will be made if there is a split vote of 50-50. In other words, the referee and the majority of the judges have to agree that the Pair violated the small lift rule in order to make a deduction. If there aren't at least 6 "yes" votes, then no deduction will be made.

 

There were a number of other technical rule changes - such as what constitutes a difficulty entry into a spin or death spiral -- with which I won't burden you. Frankly, those are the kinds of things which judges and skaters know but most fans don't see. The above are the major changes that fans will understand when looking at the scores and/or the judges sheets.

 

The new rules address one of the problems most of us have had with the quad, which is that a skater gets rewarded with lots of points even if he messes up the quad. Now, a skater might be better off doing, for example, a clean triple lutz than trying a quad and ending up on the ice. That should get a number of the Men thinking about whether they really want to try the quad or not.

 

Eliminating any points for a popped jump is also a good change, in my opinion. Skaters shouldn't get points for not really doing a jump. Those small points can make a difference in the standings, and it doesn't seem right that the difference between 2nd and 3rd, for example, is decided by points awarded for a jump that was popped and not actually done.

 

The 1.5 revolution rule might cause a bit of a headache for a skater doing a three jump combination with a single jump as the middle one, but a lot of skaters cheated a bit on the single anyway. The Technical Committee is basically saying that, with the exception of a cleanly done single axel, there is no place for single jumps at the Senior or Junior Level. 

 

I'm both pleased and a bit amazed that the Technical Committee actually addressed some of the problems with the technical scoring. Now if we can get them to work on the component scores...

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post

 

The new rules address one of the problems most of us have had with the quad, which is that a skater gets rewarded with lots of points even if he messes up the quad. Now, a skater might be better off doing, for example, a clean triple lutz than trying a quad and ending up on the ice. That should get a number of the Men thinking about whether they really want to try the quad or not.

 

So happy to see this.  It will be interesting to see how this impacts the men's programs and scoring next season.  

 

On another topic, did anyone see Tara and Johnny do fashion commentary for the Kentucky Derby? Johnny's hat was a thing to behold, complete with winged horse.  

Edited by apgold
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Does anyone know whether Daisuke Takahashi is retiring?

 

Oh, Jeremy, Jeremy, Jeremy. If you feel you have more to give skating, why not become a choreographer? Competing makes you and your fans (including me) crazy.

Share this post


Link to post

 

Does anyone know whether Daisuke Takahashi is retiring?

 

Nothing official about Dai retiring.  I think he said he was taking a year off and then deciding what to do.  I think he may retire though, injuries have caught up with him.

 

I've been treating my figure skating withdrawal watching the Stars on Ice videos on Youtube.  If you like Mirai, google her Demons routine, she does some really amazing spins and it's an emotional performance.  

 

Interesting that the Canadian and US tours are doing the some of the same group skates - I suppose they didn't have a big choreography budget.  I really like the ladies skating to Scala & Kolacny’s cover of Radiohead's "Creep" - it's a not what you'd expect from an SOI routine.  (In Canada it's Tessa, Kaitlyn, Kaetlyn and Kirsten and the US it's Meryl, Mirai, Gracie and Ashley, IIRC).

 

(google youtube stars on ice creep, if you're interested)

Edited by apgold

Share this post


Link to post

So has Yu Na Kim officially retired from competition or retired from skating, period?  Because I'm hearing conflicting stories as to which is the truth.  I know she's said she'd made up her mind when Sochi was over that she wasn't going to compete anymore, but the press conference after her latest All That Skate show made it sound like she's hanging up her skates permanently and not going to skate anymore in anything.

Share this post


Link to post

Reigning U.S. Pairs champions Marissa Castelli and Simon Shnapir announced that they are ending their partnership. Both skaters said they want to continue to compete in Pairs, and each will look for a new partner.

Castelli and Shnapir have been skating together for 8 years, but they almost ended their partnership two years ago. They decided to stick it out until at least the Olympic year, especially after John Coughlin had to have hip surgery. With the then reigning U.S. Pairs champions “on the shelf” for a while, Castelli and Shnapir felt they had an opportunity to make it to the Olympics if they stayed together. As you know, they did make it to Sochi. Now, they’ve decided 8 years together is long enough, and they both will look for new partners to skate with.

Keeping a Pairs team together has always been a challenge in the U.S. Let’s hope the that few Senior Pairs we have left decide to stay together. With so many other countries' pairs breaking up (Germany, Russia, Canada), the field is wide open.

 

ETA: Another one bites the dust. Canadian Pair skaters Page Lawrence and Rudi Sweigers have announced the end of their partnership.

Lawrence and Sweigers released a statement saying that they were thrilled to have achieved their dream of competing at the Olympics “but we reached the point where we want different things” (translation: they don’t want to skate together any more).Lawrence said she will be looking for a new partner (um, Dylan Moscovitch is available...).Sweigers is taking a year off from skating for “personal reasons”.

I believe the deadline to submit the list of candidates to the ISU for this coming fall’s Grand Prix events is June 2. So the Federations are probably telling skaters that is time to make up their minds about coming back next season. I expect we will send more end of partnership and/or retirement announcements over the next few weeks

Edited by Good Queen Jane

Share this post


Link to post

I saw some video posted by someone who attended SOI−showing Simon and Mirai practicing a throw. Maybe Mirai could make the move from singles to pairs? Simon IS looking for a partner.

 

I'm only half serious. But it's hard to think of all these broken-up teams and not try to do some matchmaking. Mirai is also looking in better shape than at Nationals now and I hear that she's killing it at SOI. Unfortunately, I can only watch the videos posted on YouTube since SOI doesn't come anywhere near me.

 

(My first post on Previously TV! I was a poster on TWOP way back when it was still Mighty Big TV ... Now I'm VERY glad to be here.)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Yay! So happy people are posting even though the season is over. Pulling for Mirai and excited to see Stolbova and Klimov next season!

Share this post


Link to post

News roundup

 

Simon Shnapir has a new partner in Dee Dee Leng.  I'm not familiar with her skating but good luck to them in the upcoming season.

 

Another new pairing announcement in Canada - Kirsten Moore-Towers and Michael Marinaro.

 

Mirai gave an interview recently and said she has a new coach.  Didn't say who, but there are rumors it's Rachael Flatt's old coach, Tom Zakrajsek, who also coaches Agnes Zawadzki, her BFF.  She's been working with him recently, as noted upthread.

 

Also, there are some great videos on Youtube of Evan Lysacek skating in the Denis Ten & Friends show.  He really seems to be back in fighting shape. 

Edited by apgold

Share this post


Link to post

Dee Dee Leng won Junior Ladies in 2009 and teamed up with Timothy LeDuc in pairs in 2012. That team was 3rd after the short at Nationals in 2014 but fell (literally) to 7th after a bad free skate.

Share this post


Link to post

Not surprising, but I'm still a little sad -

 

Olympic ice dance champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White announced today they will not compete in the 2014-15 figure skating season.

"We're so grateful for the support we've received through this truly amazing year in our lives," Davis and White said. "Trying to stay in the present, we've decided not to look too far ahead regarding our competitive careers. We'll be taking the 2014-15 season away from competition. We will not make any further decisions until a later date."

 

As a fan, it's been such a fun ride with these two.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

Two new Pairs have announced partnership, pending the approval of the Federations involved.

Pairs skaters Marissa Castelli of the U.S. and Mervin Tran of Canada have announced they plan to form a partnership, pending Skate Canada’s approval to release Tran from their Federation so he can skate for the U.S. Skate Canada is expected to decide on Tran’s release at their annual meeting at the end of June.Tran had previously skated for Japan and won the bronze medal at the 2011-12 Worlds with then partner Narumi Takahashi. If Skate Canada does approve the release, Tran and Castelli, both of whom are 23,  would still have to sit out next year, because Tran competed for Canada internationally last season with Natasha Purich. Under ISU rules, skaters have to sit out a year if they change Federations.Tran and Castelli plan to split their training between Boston – with coach Bobby Martin – and Montreal, which will be their primary training site, with coach Bruno Marcotte. Castelli previously skated with Simon Shnapir, who is now skating with Dee Dee Leng.

Canadian Pairs skater Dylan Moscovith plans to partner up with Russian skater Lubov Iliushechkina, pending approval for her release from the Russian Skating Federation.Iliuschechkina, 22, won the 2009 World Junior Pairs championship with Russian skater Nodari Maisuradze. The pair split, however, March, 2012. Iliushechkina had hoped to skate for France last season but a proposed partnership fell through.Moscovitch, 29, previously skated with Kirsten Moore-Towers, who ended their partnership and is now planning to skate with Michael Marinaro.Assuming that both Iliuschechkina’s release from the Russian Federation and her Canadian visa application are approved, Iliuschechkina and Moscovitch will be able to skate for Canada in the upcoming season, since she did not compete internationally in 2013-14. The Pair plan to train in Toronto with coach Lee Barkell and in Hamilton with coach Bryce Davison.

Take good notes on all these team changes. There will be a quiz in September.

 

On the positive side, U.S. Pairs team Scimeca and Knierim have said that they are healthy, happy together (both on and off the ice) and are committed to competing for the next four years, with the goal of competing at the 2018 Olympics in Korea.

No word yet from U.S. Pairs Denney and Coughlin on whether they plan to compete next season.

Share this post


Link to post

Congratulations to Charlie White and Tanith Belbin on their engagement!  His photo of the two of them on Instagram is really beautiful.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post

In an interview which has been printed in several Canadian newspapers, Olympic silver medalist and Canadian Men’s Champion Patrick Chan says he will not compete in the upcoming Grand Prix season. He plans to wait until fall to decide if he will compete in the 2015 Canadian and World Championships.

“I’m going to take a bit of a break from the Grand Prix season,” Chan said. “I’ve done it so many years, I think I deserve a bit of a break from it. Just take that opportunity to catch up with friends that I haven’t had a chance to see, and play some hockey or go do things that I’ve always wanted to do and just haven’t had the chance.”

If he decides to return for the Canadian and World Championships, Chan estimates that he’d need about two months to get back to top form. That means he would need to make a decision by no later than mid-November in order to be ready to compete at the Canadian Nationals, which take place Jan. 17-25, 2015.

Share this post


Link to post

 

Take good notes on all these team changes. There will be a quiz in September.

 

LOL - all of these changes are making my head spin.

 

Not surprised about Patrick sitting out the season.  From his quote, it shows just how dedicated figure skaters are to their sport when they are in competition mode. There really isn't much time for anything else.

Share this post


Link to post

The ISU has announced more technical changes for the upcoming season.

 

ALL SKATERS

 

Each Skater/Pair Couple must take the starting position of each segment of the competition (Short Program/Short Dance, Free Skate/Free Dance) at least 30 SECONDS AFTER THEY ARE CALLED TO THE START. (Previously, skaters had 1 minute to take their position, but the ISU has cut the time in half).

 

The first competitor(s) in a warm-up group will be granted an extra time of 30 seconds after called to the start. The timing procedure will start after the 30 seconds extra time period. After 30 seconds, if the skater(s) have not yet taken the starting position, the Referee shall apply a deduction of 1 point from the final score. If after 60 seconds, the skater(s) have not yet taken the starting position, he/she/they will be considered as withdrawn.The Referee will time the duration needed to take the starting position and decide on subsequent deduction or withdrawal.

 

So no more long conversations with your coach at the boards, "talking to your skates" or taking pre-skate victory laps around the ice after your name is called. When they call your name, go to center ice and take your position.

 

SINGLE SKATERS

 

- Any double jump (including the double axel) cannot be included more than twice in total in a Free Program (as a solo jump or as part of a combination/sequence). What this does is eliminate a skater doing, for example, a triple lutz-double toe and then later in the program, a triple flip-double toe-double toe. Also, if a skater messes up and doubles a toe, then they better think on their feet and not do two more toes in the three-jump combination if they want to get points for the combination. This is in line with the ISU's new philosophy of "Do it right or get penalized".

 

- Of all the triple and quad jumps, only 2 can be executed twice. If at least one of these jumps is done in a combination or sequence, both are jumps are evaluated in a regular way. If both executions are solo jumps, the second of these solo jumps will receive 70% of its original base value. So if a skater does two solo quad toes, the second quad toe will receive 70% of its original base value, unless the second quad toe is done in combination. This also eliminates skaters doing their best jumps multiple times. Basically, the ISU is saying, "Ok, we know you can do that jump; now move on and do something else".

 

- The choreographic sequence may now include a jump with a maximum of two revolutions and may be done anytime during the program (previously the choreographic sequence had to be done after the step sequence so the judges can tell the difference). The choreographic sequence will be identified when it is concluded with the preparation for the next element, if it is not the last element of the program. In other words, if a skater wants to do the choreographic sequence early in their Free Skate, they have to end it by moving on to another element immediately. No skating around for a bit as a skater can do after the step sequence. The choreographers will have to think about this one a bit.

 

DANCE

 

PATTERN DANCES FOR 2015-16: SENIOR - Ravensburger Waltz; JUNIOR - Starlight Waltz

 

For the 2014-15 season:

 

- For the Senior Short Dance, the required Spanish Rhythm may not include the Spanish Tango (a small mercy for those of us who are not looking forward to having to sit through two hours of Spanish music for the Short Dance).

 

- Long lifts are now define as combination lifts which include two rotational lifts in different directions, two curve lifts on two different curves (forming a serpentine pattern) or two different types of short lifts. The duration of the lift should not exceed 12 seconds.

 

- Combination lifts are evaluated as one unit by adding the base value of the two first executed type of short lifts and then applying the GOE. The GOE of the Combination Lift is equal to the sum of the numerical values of the highest value (Level) of the corresponding GOE of these two first executed types of short lifts multiplied by a factor of two.

 

And they wonder why no wonder understands how the scoring is done in Dance...

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post

Wait, I'm confused.  The required Short Dance is a Waltz, but it requires a Spanish Rhythm?  Spanish rhythms are written in 4/4 time. How do you do a 3/4 or 6/8 time Waltz to a 4/4 time tune?

Edited by legaleagle53

Share this post


Link to post

The Spanish Rhythm is for the 2014-2015 season. The Waltz is for next season, 2015-2016. The ISU announces the Short Dance rhythms a year in advance.

 

In other news, U.S. Pairs team Denney and Coughlin have announced they are going to sit out the 2014-15 season in order to give Caydee Denney a chance to rehab her lingering right ankle injury. Denney injured her ankle in practice on March 19 as the team was preparing for 2014 Worlds. Denney and Coughlin indicated they will skate in some shows but don’t feel they can return to the competitive level that they need to be at in time for the 2014-15 season. They won’t be doing any throws or jumps in their shows, which are the elements that are causing problems for Denney’s ankle.

So another U.S. Pair bites the dust, at least for this season. Let’s hope all the other U.S. Pairs stay healthy because the ranks are getting pretty thin.

Share this post


Link to post

Jeremy Abbott is coming back and will do Skate America (in Chicago), along with Jason Brown, Gracie Gold, Mirai Nagasu, the Shibutanis, Chock and Bates, Scimeca and Knierim, and Denney and Frazier. Is Jason supposed to have a quad this season?

 

Alissa Czisny has officially announced her retirement, and Agnes Zawadzki is taking the season off. I suspect that's a euphemism for "retiring."

Share this post


Link to post

Thank God Alissa is finally retiring. She's a beautiful skater and I'm happy she earned her two national titles, but it had gotten downright painful to watch her struggle in competitions the last few years. Now if she could just sit down and have a heart-to-heart with Jeremy Abbott.....

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

The Broadmoor open was held over the weekend, and I was able to watch Jason and Mirai’s new programs.  (I have the files if anyone wants to see them.  Just PM me.)  Jason finished in 1st place and Mirai was in 2nd behind Ashley Cain.  She faltered in her short program but hit almost everything in her long.

 

Jason’s new programs are great – the short one I’m not sure what the music is, it’s got a swing/jazzy feel and the long is to Tristan & Isolde and very dramatic, much darker than Riverdance.  He did not do a quad, although I hear he is working on a 4T.  His jumps still need some work, he fell on the 3A in his long but his overall skating is beautiful with his spins, transitions and body movement.  He looks a bit more muscular in the shoulders, too. No new costumes yet, he wore a black t-shirt and pants for both. 

 

Mirai’s new programs also look promising, apparently Adam Rippon choreographed both.  They are a great pair, just like Jason is with Rohene Ward.  Her short is to Rachmaninov’s Variations on Paganini (I think) and the long is to Madame Butterfly (with operatic vocals).  Mirai wore a black unitard for her short and what looked like her On Golden Pond costume for the long.  She’s also included the pearl spin in her short since she’s been doing it for Stars On Ice.  Her jumps look better although she did not do any 3/3s.  Looks like she is working with Tom Z since he accompanied her there.

Edited by apgold

Share this post


Link to post

Russian Men’s skater Evgeny Plushenko told a news conference that he is planning to compete at the 2018 Olympics in Korea. Plushenko told reporters that “Everything that was broken has been fixed, and there is nothing left to break. I will try to participate in my 5th Olympic Games and give a dignified performance.”

If he does compete in the 2018 Olympics, Plushenko would be 35 years old at the time.

Some people just don’t know when to call it quits.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post

Oh, Plushy.  How can we miss you when you won't go away?

 

Take the hint that your body has been giving you for years.  It's time to hang up the skates for good, moi drug.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post

Plushy is just getting people riled up because that's what he do. Though he's landing 3lutzes and 3axels in shows that's a far cry from landing 7 jumps (including a quad) in a four and a half minute program. I love Plushy just as much as the next fan. But there is no way his body is going to hold up until the 2018 Olympics.

 

I do wonder though if apart of his relentless desire to compete is tied to the Russian Federation and the monies that can make with him on the ticket. He is after all, the biggest skating start they have right now.

Share this post


Link to post

Russian Men’s skater Evgeny Plushenko told a news conference that he is planning to compete at the 2018 Olympics in Korea. Plushenko told reporters that “Everything that was broken has been fixed, and there is nothing left to break. I will try to participate in my 5th Olympic Games and give a dignified performance.”

If he does compete in the 2018 Olympics, Plushenko would be 35 years old at the time.

Some people just don’t know when to call it quits.

 

I have never, ever liked Plushenko, his smug arrogance, his mullet, his insanely prominent proboscis with its prominent pores, his tacky-ass, Euro-Trash costumes, his abuse of Edvin Marton music, his attempts to be sexy (my brain is permanently scarred watching him do those pelvic thrusts in his FS at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics ::shudder:: ), and his empty "choreography" that resembles an apoplectic windmill doing what my mother used to call the "Tap-Dancing Tee-Tees" (if you've had or have kids, that's the hyper dancing around while holding oneself that little kids do when they have to pee but don't want to stop playing to go take a whizz).

 

Going all the way back to the SLC Olympics in 2002, I have eagerly anticipated his post-Games retirement announcement four times, only to have that dream quashed.  At this point, he's turning into a figure skating cockroach, surpassed by only Fumie Suguri in the "refusing to retire even though he/she is long past his/her expiration date."

 

Lastly, I'd like to give a big, fat Bronx Cheer to all of those from the part of the peanut gallery who bitch and moan that Jeremy Abbott won't retire yet bemoan the thought of Plushenko no longer skating.  Jeremy may not have the Gold Medals of EP, but his skating is far more interesting, intelligent, beautiful, organic, and emotional than anything Plushenko has ever put on the ice. 

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
×