Thursday, March 31, 2011

How I will miss seeing this at Worlds

I understand Shawn's decision to skate in Canadian Stars on Ice, given the fact that he is likely to retire, but still... it'd have been nice to have seen this gorgeous freeskate at Worlds.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Skating Updates

Shawn Sawyer & Myriane Samson will not be competing at Worlds; Myraine is injured & Shawn is choosing to skate in Canadian Stars on Ice instead. They will be replaced by Kevin Reynolds and Amelie Lacoste

Russia will expedite the visa process for Worlds.

Hungarian ice dancer Nora Hoffman is undergoing treatment for an illness.

Melissa Gregory & Denis Petukhov are holding a skating show.

Alexe Gilles has left Tom Z for Yuka Sato & Jason Dungjen

A recent article on Rachael Flatt.

A recent article on Alissa Czisny.

Sinead Kerr & John Kerr have withdrawn from Worlds - she is having shoulder surgery today.

Sarah & Drew's latest blog - it contains a little more info on the Kerrs' withdrawal and more about the Skaters Care show.

Alissa Czisny's coach Jason Dungjen will be going to Worlds.

UPDATED: Sinead Kerr & John Kerr have announced their retirement from competition. I wish them all the best in future endeavors and a swift recovery for Sinead.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Skating Updates

Well, the ISU President has now stated the obvious -  Worlds will not be held in Japan (The Japan Skating Federation handed it back over, acknowledging they can't hold it at this time), which thankfully means no Worlds in October. World Team Trophy will now be moved to April of 2012, dates to be determined ( not that anyone really cares about that event at this point). The ISU is officially taking bids for new locations for Worlds on Tuesday, deciding Wednesday or Thursday, and announcing their decision on Friday.

Here's more of the latest on Worlds & skaters.

Worlds trying to find new site

More info from Phil Hersh

Hersh Spoke to the ISU President again

Universal sports theorizes on whether Yu-Na Kim will compete at a rescheduled Worlds

Denver Post article on U.S. Worlds Bids

Another Hersh article

If more articles come today, I'll likely edit them in, so be sure to check back for the latest!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Skating Updates

Sorry about the lateness of some of this news - I've been wrapped up the the whole Worlds drama.

There was a lot of break ups for teams announced recently - Zhang & Toth, Bereswill & Young, and perhaps most surprisingly, Dube & Davison.

Florent Amodio was in Japan during the earthquake, but is now back in France, as the French federation was quite concerned over the nuclear problems.

Sarah & Drew spoke to Mirai Nagasu

Evan Lysacek won the Sullivan Award.

Faiella & Scali have officially retired.

Various articles on Worlds (semi chronological order)

Shibutani's initial thoughts

Davis & White's thoughts

Daisuke Takahashi & Mao Asada speak about the situations

Ryan Bradley's thoughts

Still no decision by the ISU & discussion of Worlds possibly being in OCTOBER

American coaches give their thoughts on the possibility of Worlds in October

ISU President Cinquata spoke to Phil Hersh (contradicting at least one earlier statement)

Translation of an article on Florent Amodio's thoughts

French Federations thoughts
Golden Skate gathered the thoughts of some skaters about Worlds & Japan.

Sarah and Drew blog also talking to skaters about the tragedy & Worlds.

The U.S., Sweden, & Russia have offered to host Worlds now also, in addition to Switzerland & Italy offering several days ago.

Worlds decision to come Friday or Monday

Daisuke Takahashi Training Video

from March 11th, day of the earthquake, seems like a few hours prior. 2 clean quads!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Happy Birthday Daisuke!!!

It is a certain fantastic skater's birthday today (in this timezone at least) , so here is a post to celebrate & hopefully cheer you up in the midst of all of this uncertainty and sadness in regards to the situation in Japan (and less importantly, Worlds).

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Worlds Situation Update

Three options for the world championship the first is to cancel them.

Cinquanta, the ISU president, has announced that the figure skating tournament that should have taken place in Tokyo next week, will either be cancelled or postponed to next October: “At the moment respect for the Japanese people prevails”

MILAN, 15 March 2011 – “The respect for the Japanese people ahead of everything.” This will be the main focus of the ISU as it decides what will be of the 2011 figure skating World Championships that were scheduled to take place in Tokyo next week, but that were officially cancelled by the federation on Monday given the situation. What now appears to be certain, and that dismisses the suggestions emerged in the latest hours, is that the competition will not take place in the coming weeks at a different venue – said the Milan-born Ottavio Cinquanta, president of the international federation – it wouldn’t be correct towards a country that has been struck by such a tragedy and towards the Japanese federation, which was awarded the right to stage the competition. Furthermore, as far as the logistics are concerned, it would be very difficult given the time constraints. Staging a World Championship is no easy task.
THREE OPTIONS — There are three possibilities, as Cinquanta explained: “Our council will consider the situation very carefully. Presumably though, we will opt for the complete cancellation, or a postponement to October. In Tokyo, if the authorities give us the go ahead, or in a city in a different country, and in that eventuality there would be the promise to award Japan with an edition in the future. As soon as possible we will make a statement to make our decision official.”
the future — At the moment, the 2012 edition of the competition has been awarded to France (Nice) and the 2013 one to Canada (London, Ontario). It should also be kept in consideration that the first stage of the next Senior Grand Prix (Skate Canada) is scheduled to take place from 21 to 23 October; and that the only edition of a World Championship to be cancelled was in 1961, when the plane that carried the American team crashed during its landing in Brussels: 72 people died, of which 34 were part of the US team.
Andrea Buongiovanni

Monday, March 14, 2011

World Championships Postponed

or eventually possibly canceled. Here is the ISU's statement.

ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2011 Tokyo

Lausanne, March 14, 2011

Taking into account the continued critical developments in Japan, the ISU’s primary concern for the safety of all participants, spectators and members of concerned entities as well as the travel advisories from many governments to avoid travel to Japan until the situation is settled, the ISU in consultation and agreement with the Japan Skating Federation (JSF) and in line with the advise of the Japanese authorities, has concluded that the staging of the ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2011 scheduled to be held on March 21-27, 2011 is not possible and the Championships will not be held during that time.

The postponement of the Event or alternatively the final cancellation is under evaluation.

The same applies to the ISU World Team Trophy in Figure Skating scheduled to be held in Yokohama on April 14-17, 2011.

It is understood that a postponement of the above-mentioned World Championships as well as the holding of the ISU World Team Trophy is subject to the confirmation by the competent Japanese authorities that the situation is back to normal conditions allowing the safe conduct of major ISU sports Events in the Tokyo area.

As soon as the situation in this respect has been finalized, the ISU will inform all parties concerned of the decision taken.

Ottavio Cinquanta               Fredi Schmid
President                             Director General


UPDATED: Ottavio Cinquanta spoke to Phil Hersh; final decision about Worlds apparently must  be made in the next few days. 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Skating Updates

I'll do a more thorough post covering some of the recent happenings sometime soon (sorry, I've been wrapped up in the news about Japan & have been out.)

The biggest story skating wise is concerning whether or not Worlds will be canceled. The ISU says that an announcement will be made no later than tomorrow. Here is the full statement.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Skating Updates

 Laura Lepisto has withdrawn from Worlds due to a back injury.

Skate America will be held in Ontario, California, much to my chagrin.

Evgeni Plushenko has been training and working on quad salchows and loops and is hopeful that his ban from ISU competition will be lifted in the near future.

A new article on Nathan Chen. So looking forward to seeing him in the future!

Adelina Sotnikova won the ladies title at Junior Worlds, with Elizaveta Tuktamishiva & Agnes Zawadzki winning silver and bronze, respectively.

Andrei Rogozine of Canada won the men's event, followed by Keiji Tanaka and Alexander Majorov.

Sui and Han defended their World Junior title, despite lingering questions about the formers age eligibility. Ksenia Stolbova and Fedor Klimov & Narumi Takahashi and Mervin Tran rounded out the top three.

Ksenia Monko and Kirill Khaliavin won the World Junior Dance title by a large margin, winning the gold over Ekaterina Pushkash and Jonathan Guerreiro and Charlotte Lichtman and Dean Copely.

Friday, March 4, 2011

30 Days of Skating - Day 30: Why you love figure skating

I thought this would be a fitting topic for my 100th post on this blog. =)  Thank you so much to everyone who's been reading!

I love figure skating because it's a beautiful combination of art and sport. It reminds me of dancing, but there's so many beautiful movements that aren't really possible to do with anything other than ice and blades. I love the moments when a skater does a move, even something simple, and it is just so right with the music and it literally takes your breath away.

I find it amazing how some skaters really can touch one's heart through their performance; I love that connection and think it's a truly special thing. Things like that really make it transcend from simply athletics into a piece of art, and I feel that the skaters who accomplish that are the ones who will really be remembered.The different personalities that are displayed in programs make figure skating that much more intriguing - there's probably at least one skater that you will like, even if you don't care for skating as a whole. It's fun to see that kind of variety even while the skaters perform many of the same elements; it makes them stand out. 

While I haven't been able to skate regularly in a long time, I love it when I get the chance to. It feels like flying, and even the cold air feels sweet, in a way. The work involved in learning elements really makes you appreciate what elite skaters do that much more. It's the little things, I think, like hitting just the right spot on your blade to do a twizzle or landing a nice salchow, that make skating so gratifying.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

30 Days of Skating - Day 29: Your favorite figure skater of all time

There is no way that I'm picking just one for overall... but one for each discipline (other than synchro)? Sure!

The one and only Michelle Kwan. She will forever be the queen of figure skating, as far as I am concerned.

Daisuke Takahashi. (Really, did you expect anyone else? :P)

Xue Shen & Hongbo Zhao. Their story is essentially skating's version of a fairy tale. (If you haven't yet, read The Second Mark for their life stories up until about 2003.)

Ice Dance
Maia Shibutani & Alex Shibutani. I've only become a fan recently, but going back and watching videos of them when they were younger, I've realized how insane it is that I haven't paid much attention to them until this season. They are a gorgeous team and I truly look forward to seeing them continue to improve in the years to come.

*Note: I just looked back and realized that all of the skaters I listed are Asian or of Asian descent, haha. I guess that's telling about my taste and how skating has shifted in power in recent years.