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Jarrett
06-16-2011, 06:43 PM
I have to defend Mirai a little here. She is hardly being downgraded on her jumps like she used to be. She has improved greatly in this regard under Carroll. She won the free skate at 4CC's with a clean skate over Asada and Ando. I really don't think Mirai under-rotates jumps more so than any other lady (minus maybe a health Yu-Na) presently. Having said that, that doesn't guarantee she would have secured the 3 spots for the U.S. I do think she was much healthier and more ready than Rachael to compete.

I do not hate Rachael, and feel badly for her that she has to deal with this publicly. She was partly responsible so I think it is the correct decision by the USFS. She made a mistake, which people are prone to do and I hope she doesn't feel like people think less of her. If it was any other skater, I would feel the same way. As I said before, the USFS and/or the PSA need to come down harshly on Tom Z. He let Rachael down.

Mirai was 3rd in the FS and 3rd overall 4CC.

query5
06-16-2011, 06:44 PM
okay, i don't buy it.
why wait until now to fine/reprimand her.
why not do it at worlds, or after.

now i don't know whether this is true or not, but someone stated on forums that the USFSA knew a week earlier that rachel was injured, but chose to keep her on the team anyway.

for me this is the part where the USFSA itself is escaping culablitily here by putting at seems for the moment all the mess/reason,/respsonbility on rachel.
so far none on tom or themselves.

in fact i see it this way.

1) rachel should have taken herself out,
2) when she didn't Tom should have stepped in and did it.
3) the USFSA should have when and if they knew.

for me all three has to take blame in this matter.
i can believe the usfsa knew ahead of time and for whatever reason chose not to take her out/ or maybe didn't think her injury was worth removal.

as far as Mirai is concerned here. Miria is at fault for not making the world team this year, she didn't skate the way she should have
2) for help in costing 3 spots at last years worlds- the way she skated.
3)if Mirai skated the way at 4 Continents two weeks later at nationals she would have been on the world team. whether or not she would have got 3 spots is another matter.
for me until rachel, mirai, alissa, ashley, agnes, and whoever gets us the 3 spots and that means skates well in short and long. i will doubt anyone coaches say so including franks. mirai blew her shot at worlds last year, in the gp events for 3 years running.
but this fiasco with Rachel has --rachel, tom and the usfsa fingerprints all over it.
so all three should apologize as quickly as possible to caroline zhang, ashley wagner, alissa czisny, and mirai nagasu and other skaters as possible.

to me it is just for show --to see hey we follow rules, --yea right. a little to late .

babayaga
06-16-2011, 06:44 PM
I have to defend Mirai a little here. She is hardly being downgraded on her jumps like she used to be. She has improved greatly in this regard under Carroll. She won the free skate at 4CC's with a clean skate over Asada and Ando. I really don't think Mirai under-rotates jumps more so than any other lady (minus maybe a health Yu-Na) presently. Having said that, that doesn't guarantee she would have secured the 3 spots for the U.S. I do think she was much healthier and more ready than Rachael to compete.

I do not hate Rachael, and feel badly for her that she has to deal with this publicly. She was partly responsible so I think it is the correct decision by the USFS. She made a mistake, which people are prone to do and I hope she doesn't feel like people think less of her. If it was any other skater, I would feel the same way. As I said before, the USFS and/or the PSA need to come down harshly on Tom Z. He let Rachael down.

Just to clarify, Mirai was third in the free skate at 4CC behind Ando and Asada.

ETA: sorry, didn't see someone already posted this.

FSfan107
06-16-2011, 06:48 PM
Mirai was 3rd in the FS and 3rd overall 4CC.

Thank you for correcting me. My overall point was that I think her jumps are greatly improved and more consistent.

FigureSpins
06-16-2011, 06:51 PM
With so many of Tom Z's athletes moving on, I sort of wonder if his reprimand isn't coming down the pike. If it includes some coaching restrictions, athletes would be better off with another coach. Just a thought, no proof or insider knowledge.

Skittl1321
06-16-2011, 06:58 PM
okay, i don't buy it.
why wait until now to fine/reprimand her.
why not do it at worlds, or after.


I don't know how the reprimand process works, but if it's anything like the grievance process it takes time. Both sides get to present a case- Flatt may have been given the opportunity to defend her actions, and depending on how severe the fine is, it may have even been a defend her actions through lawyers sort of situation.

So it's possible the process did start right after worlds.

Jarrett
06-16-2011, 07:15 PM
Thank you for correcting me. My overall point was that I think her jumps are greatly improved and more consistent.

I was correcting it before someone else chimed in. I agree that Mirai's jumps have improved while training under Frank. I honestly didn't even see all the downgrades she received at 2010 Nationals in the long program. :shuffle:

TheIronLady
06-16-2011, 07:21 PM
It's a little complicated and here is how I think it all transpired in the eyes of TPTB -

Flatt was skating injured early on this past season and everyone knew it. Still, I think the USFSA noted she was medaling on the GP Circuit in the Fall and made the GPF despite her injuries. She bombed there, but she made it to the final for the first time in her career [which Tom Z probably made sure TPTB were aware of], and Flatt got there ahead of Nagasu [who was a disaster at CoC and failed to medal] and Wagner [who was a disaster at NHK]

She looked better by '11 Nats, listened to the critics who mattered and changed to an eye-catching SP which kept her closer to a clean Czisny and Nagasu heading into the LP. Then, she got slightly inflated scores in the LP due to the fact that 1) Nagasu choked again in the LP, 2) Czisny clinched the top spot, and 3) she was winning practices w/ 3-3s, and 4) got lucky w/ a great draw in the LP which gave the judges wider latitude in sticking 'Rachael the Rock' wherever they wanted, which was ahead of a Nagasu who failed to deliver all season long, but behind a rejuvenated and much loved Czisny.

The USFSA probably thought she was ready.

Nagasu happened to have the skate of her life at '11 4CCs while Czisny faltered and looked like she was reverting back to form, and Flatt looked, well, a little blah and failed to do any 3-3s. I think it created a sense of doubt among fans and who knows, also among certain members of the skating establishment that the US was once again going to have a tough time getting 3 spots at Worlds.

The status of Rachael's injury was vague leading up to Worlds. She consented to the USFSA waiver. And at the same time, doubts are surfacing about how Tom Z handled injured skaters [Farris, Bradley, etc.] now that the spotlight started to shine on the Flatt camp in Colo. Sprs. Add FC's complaining, Hersh's reporting in the Chicago Tribune, the failure of the US to get 3 spots in ladies, and the USFSA felt compelled to do something to act like they are involved [who knows if this is a one-time-thing or a newly invigorated association]

This is an insightful account. With this unprecedented action, they are framing the issue as about Rachael not following a rule. In reality, they know they were complicit in choosing her, and I suspect some of TPTB put pressure on Rachael. Rachael gave hints leading up to Worlds that she was not healthy. It appears the USFSA is worried about scrutiny of its Worlds selection procedures and overall competence.

All I can say is hopefully the fine was minimal, and I hope this compels future coach/athletes to be forthcoming and honest. The USFSA should consider its role and reassess its World selection procedures, but it sounds like that's the last thing they'll do.

essence_of_soy
06-16-2011, 07:42 PM
Knowing personally that the turnaround time for gaining a fast - tracked VISA to Russia was two working days, Rachel only knew about her injury on the Friday prior to Worlds starting. Unless the USFSA had all of their alternates' paperwork processed and ready for such an instance, there's little way Nagasu could have gone to Moscow at such short notice anyway.

RD
06-16-2011, 07:53 PM
This is an insightful account. With this unprecedented action, they are framing the issue as about Rachael not following a rule. In reality, they know they were complicit in choosing her, and I suspect some of TPTB put pressure on Rachael. Rachael gave hints leading up to Worlds that she was not healthy. It appears the USFSA is worried about scrutiny of its Worlds selection procedures and overall competence.

I think all parties can learn something from this. For the skaters, it's to not hide any injury from the Association for the sake of "competing no matter what". For the coaches, it's to be vigilant about any significant pain or troubles from their skaters. For the Association, perhaps stronger athlete monitoring procedures should be implemented- AND enforced. Maybe even the World Team selection procedures should be revisited.

JamieElena
06-16-2011, 07:53 PM
Knowing personally that the turnaround time for gaining a fast - tracked VISA to Russia was two working days, Rachel only knew about her injury on the Friday prior to Worlds starting. Unless the USFSA had all of their alternates' paperwork processed and ready for such an instance, there's little way Nagasu could have gone to Moscow at such short notice anyway.

Wouldn't a US Passport, which Nagasu presumably would have had for years as she's competed internationally for quite some time, be all she needed? She wouldn't need a Visa, right?

ETA: If a Visa was needed, I would hope that USFSA processed paperwork for all the alternates as soon as they knew the new Worlds location.

Visaliakid
06-16-2011, 08:03 PM
Everybody should download and read the following:

COMPETITION READINESS: Guidelines & Requirements for U.S. Figure Skating International Selection Pool @ http://www.usfigureskating.org/Content/2011-12%20Competition%20Readiness%20Overview%20and%20Ag reement.pdf (http://www.usfigureskating.org/Content/2011-12%20Competition%20Readiness%20Overview%20and%20Ag reement.pdf)

This one is the document for the upcoming season (2011-12). It is updated and issued prior to each new season. In particular scroll down to page 4 and read the section titled "Training Commitment, Injury & Case Management" and the three following paragraphs.

If skaters eligible for international competitions each year do not read, sign and submit this agreement form by the required dates, then they will not be assigned to compete outside the USA.

Rachael and her coach obviously signed the agreement and knew of her responsibilities to report her injury. They did not report it! Not cool! I have no sympathy for her or her coach!

I enjoy Rachael's skating but she should have lived up to her agreement, PERIOD!

The entire document is quite interesting if one takes the time to read it all. The requirements are extensive and each time a skater changes coaches (even in mid season) both the skater and coach must re-submit a new plan to compete including signing a new agreement. So skaters just don't go to a new coach, train and go to competitions... the whole process is far more extensive than we fans may have thought; at least this fan anyway.

edonice
06-16-2011, 08:07 PM
Phew! There's a lot to respond to.

Okay, for starters, Mirai can’t be called unreliable. Mirai started off last season with an injury serious enough to put her in a cast for four weeks. She was going to have a tough season no matter what she did. I think she’s also struggling because her own self-doubt (in interviews and on the ice) has given others an excuse to doubt her. No American skater has more potential than Mirai, and there are few things more terrifying than not living up to your potential. Also, fourth place at the Olympics, and 1st place in the Worlds short program (after a marathon season) is incredible.

As for Frank ‘whining’ about Rachael’s injury, his job is to advocate strongly for his skater. He’s not whining, he’s being a great coach, the kind you want in your corner. He’s already shown that he won’t support Mirai when she’s not skating up to his expectations. That means that when she is skating up to his standards, you can trust Frank when he says she’s the best skater for the job.

I’m conflicted over how Rachael and Tom Z will take the ‘reprimand’. Rachael rides heavily on being ‘the good kid’, the one who balances school and skating and is a good egg all around. Being publicly slapped on the wrist for lying to her federation is probably completely new for her. I doubt she’s had so much as a detention in her life. Same with Tom Z. He’s tried to represent himself as a coach who tells skaters, ‘work hard and you’ll succeed’, a completely Hallmark ethic. But unlike Frank, he’s encouraged badly injured skaters to compete, and all but threw Rachael under the bus when she skated poorly at Worlds. His actions, and the USFSA’s anger at them, are in conflict with how he tries to present himself.

There’s a chance that both Rachael and Tom Z will just be pissed at the federation for being unfair, and go about what they were doing before. Rachael doesn’t have a great record for addressing the parts of her skating that really need work – speed, flexibility, grace. And I don’t think Tom Z listens to anyone.

But Rachael is a good person, I really think she is. She clearly loves to skate, and this season she looked somewhat directionless. I hope she takes this as a sign that she should listen to her instincts about what’s right for her, and what’s right to do. And I hope that Tom Z gets the message that he needs to listen to his skaters more closely and respect their injuries as well as their successes.

Sylvia
06-16-2011, 08:15 PM
Everybody should download and read the following:

COMPETITION READINESS: Guidelines & Requirements for U.S. Figure Skating International Selection Pool [link snipped]

This one is the document for the upcoming season (2011-12).
FYI, I posted the link to the 2010-11 U.S. Figure Skating ISP Competition Readiness Agreement document (which covered 2011 Worlds) back on page 7 of this thread: http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/showpost.php?p=3210232&postcount=128
Note the excerpted part I underlined below:

Failure to comply. I, the skater, understand that if I individually fail to meet each of the competition readiness requirements defined by U.S. Figure Skating, I may be deemed “not ready” or “unprepared” for competition, in which case, except for Senior Grand Prix events, the Grand Prix Final, the ISU World Championships and the Olympic Winter Games, U.S. Figure Skating reserves the right to replace me on a team, or revoke all of my expense coverage related to my assigned competition (ex. travel, lodging, apparel, etc). For Senior Grand Prix events, U.S. Figure Skating reserves the right to decline to pay for travel and lodging expenses of my coach.
Would this agreement apply to 2011 Worlds? I'm not sure...

LilJen
06-16-2011, 08:34 PM
Yeah, that "failure to comply. . . EXCEPT" is really confusing. We'll say you are unprepared, replace you, and revoke your funding and pull you from a competition--*except* if it's SGP, GPF, Worlds, or Olympics???