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behind the scenes stories, photos,
interviews and historical articles in the
sport of figure skating.
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2013 U.S. International Classic
Photos © Robin Ritoss
Countries that have earned the right to send a
competitor to the Sochi Olympic Winter Games at the Nebelhorn Trophy
Note: Countries are awarded the entry, not the
skater. Countries may send different competitors to Sochi than
the ones who placed at Nebelhorn Trophy.
- Czech Republic
Alternates: Lithuania, Finland
Alternates: Poland, Brazil
- Great Britain
Alternates: Japan, Austria
Alternates: Slovakia, Poland
News from the Southwest Pacific
Clubs of the SWP region are
invited to send us news items for inclusion here.
Southern California Interclub 2013
2013 Southern California Interclub Invitational Championships
Classic 6.0 Results
Classic IJS Results
Pacific Regional Non-qualifying Results
In the News:
The Other Shoe Drops
Injury Ends Lysacek’s Goal of Defending Olympic
Title in Sochi
Evan Lysacek, the reigning Olympic
champion, announced today (10 Dec, 2013) that a hip injury will
prevent him from defending his title at the 2014 Olympic Winter
Games in Sochi, Russia.
Lysacek, 28, tore the labrum in his left hip in
August. Despite aggressive treatment and physical therapy, the
injury became more painful in the past month. Heeding his
physician’s advice that he is at risk of permanent damage, Lysacek
will refrain from skating until the injury is completely healed,
which could be several months.
“Words cannot describe how disappointed I am to
not be able to compete in Sochi,” Lysacek said. “The proudest
moments of my life have been representing the United States in the
last two Winter Olympics. I have suffered numerous injuries over the
course of my skating career and they are some of the hardest things
an athlete has to overcome. While none of my past injuries have
sidelined me quite like this one, I remain determined to regain my
health and skate again.”
Given the seriousness of this type injury and
the six to nine months it has typically taken other elite athletes
to recover from a torn labrum this outcome was not unexpected.
Lysacek's comeback was also hampered by the fact various injuries
have kept him from earning the qualifying points needed to compete
in ISU competition both this season and last.
2013 Grand Prix Final
by Alexandra Stevenson
Lithuanian President Overturns Decision - Tobias Will Go to Olympics
American ice dancer
Isabella Tobias is dancing on clouds.
She is going to the Olympic Games, by special order of the Lithuanian President,
Grybauskaite had previously noted that 22-year-old Tobias, although she had
represented Lithuania three times at the world championships, did not
meet the general criteria to get a passport from that country, which
demands a certain fluency in that country’s language and residency
But that country’s Olympic Committee worked hard on behalf of Tobias,
who partners, Deividas
Stagniunas, 28, who was born in Kaunas, took up skating at five
and then came to the United States to look for an ice dance partner.
He has lived in the United States since then, but has often returned
to his country for skating events.
a Presidential Advisor, said the President’s change of mind about
Tobias was made because Tobias had been working on her language skills
and there had been a huge public support for the duo, on the grounds
of an “exceptional merit” criteria. Denial would be a great
disappointment for the Lithuanian Skating Association, and would be
hurt Stagniunas, who had devoted years to this partner.
Even the Lithuanian Olympic Association got involved. Their President,
hailed the decision, explaining, “Lithuania will field only nine
athletes to these Games, and Isabella and Deividas could be the top
Tobias, who attended the George Ballanchine School of American Ballet
1999-2007, and then represented Georgia with
Otar Japaridze, now trains
with Deividas in Novi, Michigan with Igor Shpilband.
- Tatjana Flade reports from Moscow
Trophee Eric Bompard 2013
Trophy Bompard opened with all four Short
Programs. US champion Ashley Wagner
took the lead in the Ladies event, which was the last to be skated,
earning 66.75. Second and third was a near tie between two Russians, with
in second place with 60.03 and her teammate,
scoring 60.01. Americans
and Samantha Cesario
going into Saturday’s Free.
As is always the case with this event, the kiss & cry
area was a unique design in an arena which is famous for its shape. It is
a pyramid with the outside covered with grass. (They even have a special
type of lawn mower to cut the growing grass on the steep slope.)
However, the management has explained this event
will almost certainly NOT be in Bercy next season because the Arena will
be being completely refurbished. This event started as Trophee Lalique in
1987 and became Trophee Bompard in 2004. It was elevated to a Grand Prix
when the Series began in 1995. (Initially, one of the six countries
hosting was Germany, but that was replaced by China. The situation is
currently unclear, because the Chinese television contract has finished
There is no draw. The order of skating for the short
program is strictly on points accumulated in ISU events. For the Free
Skate the order of performance is in reverse order to the finish in the
Trophee Eric Bompard
- The Olympic season is always a special one and although
the middle of November is still early and it is therefore
understandable that some competitors, especially those aiming for
the podium, may have not reached their best condition, the list of
entries was exciting. It included many skaters who, at least on
paper, might claim a medal at the next Olympic Games as well as a
few promising young skaters such as Han Yan of China and Anna Pogotilava
of Russia, both winners of the Cup of China, Jason Brown
from the US, and Adelina Sotnikova from Russia, who represent the
future of our sport.
2013 Skate Canada
2013 Skate America
Complexity Is Not Our Friend
- When first released into use, IJS was woefully unready for it's
purpose. But over the years many of the weaknesses in the original
version of IJS have been corrected, and even IJS skeptics have to admit
it "sorta" works despite some underlying mathematical weaknesses that
But those remaining weaknesses are not the most
serious thing that ails IJS today. That has been overtaken by the
ever increasing complexity that is harming skating in multiple ways.
This complexity does not add to the ability of the system to better
determine the results of competitions - and it is futile to do with more
things that which can be done with fewer. Rather than help, complexity
has, instead, harmed skating in several ways.
Revolutions Versus Creativity: Two Opposing Worlds
- Until a few years ago, the most important
element in figure skating was music. It was the music which gave
sense to the compound of the elements and their sequence in a program.
The skater skated his music: he felt it, he lived it and gave back to
the audience the feelings and the emotions that that particular music
inspired him. It was a unique sport, a perfect melding of technical
difficulties and art. Its artistic component was what made it so popular
and successful. Figure skating, as I used to define it, is a
“physical art”. It is the understanding and the interpretation of
the music through harmonious and elegant movements, in the same way as
ballet. Both ballet and figure skating are inspired by the music.
Past News Nuggets are in the Archive
Nov. 21 - Alisa Czisny withdraws from
Midwestern Sectional Championships due to an incompletely healed hip injury.
Czisny was undone by a torn labrum in her left hip, for which she had
surgery in June 2012 and subsequently dislocated in January 2013.
Withdrawing prevents her from qualifying to compete at the 2013 U.S. National
Figure Skating Championships where the U.S. team will be selected for the
Sochi Olympic Winter Games.
Nov. 13 - Plushenko out of Moscow Grand
Prix. After easily winning the recent Volvo Cup in Riga, last weekend Evgeni Plushenko,
the 31-year-old 2006 Olympic gold medalist who earned silver in 2002 &
2010, is injured yet again and has withdrawn from next week's Grand Prix
The Volvo Cup was his
first competition since pulling out of the European Championship in
January due to injury. This time, the problem is pain in his left knee.
His coach, Alexei Mishin, said, "Zhenya consulted with doctors and they
said he had to reduce the load he puts on the knee. He is allowed to
skate but no jumping, which will just exacerbate the pain. Pain is a
warning to any athlete." It is not clear when he will be able to compete
Nov. 12 -Ross Miner, the reigning U.S.
silver medalist, has withdrawn from 2013 Trophée Eric Bompard due to a right
2 - 8 Dec
- Santa Claus Cup
- Budapest , Hungary
3 - 8 Dec
- NRW Trophy - Dortmund, Germany
5 - 8 Dec
- Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final
5 - 8 Dec -
Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final - Fukuoka, Japan
5 - 8 Dec
- Golden Spin of Zagreb
- Zagreb, Croatia
8 - 15 Dec
18 - 21 Dec
- Ukrainian Open
2013 Trophy Eric Bompard
Virtue and Moir