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mikemba
06-16-2011, 04:12 AM
Fans and supporters are counting on USFS to make sure we send our best team to Worlds each year...a team that is ready to compete to the best of their ability.

I have to disagree with this. I don't think either the USFS or skaters owe the fans anything.

I also think blaming Rachael for costing the US 3 spots is utterly ridiculous. The US hasn't had 3 spots in ladies' skating in years.

I also disagree with whoever said Worlds is a team sport. It's not: it's an individual sport. Rachel is among the skaters, who by past performances, earned their spots to compete in 2011. It is not Rachael or any other 2011 competitor's responsibilty to earn someone else a spot in 2012.

She earned her spot at the 2011 Worlds, and in my opinion if she wanted to skate injured, that was her right.

victoriaheidi
06-16-2011, 04:13 AM
Wouldn't any ethical breaches on the part of a coach be the province of PSA and not US Figure Skating?

Probably. But I don't see PSA launching an investigation on Tom Z (but, between Rachael and Josh, I don't see how they can sit on this any longer. This guy has done wrong by his students *twice* and his organization is just going to let it go?).

Visaliakid
06-16-2011, 04:22 AM
I find some semblance of truth in each of the above comments...

As someone else mentioned, when was the last time a skater was fined and/or reprimanded for skating through an injury? Or at all? I'm just a little disturbed by this decision at all. Athletes of all sorts compete with and through injury all the time. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. The level of vitriol and calls for the guillotine being directed at this girl just boggles the mind.

Sad...

Really? :rolleyes:

skateboy
06-16-2011, 04:30 AM
I have to disagree with this. I don't think either the USFS or skaters owe the fans anything.

I also think blaming Rachael for costing the US 3 spots is utterly ridiculous. The US hasn't had 3 spots in ladies' skating in years.

I also dis agree with whoever said Worlds is a team sport. It's not: it's an individual sport. Rachel is among the skaters, who by past perfromances, earned their spots to compete in 2011. It is not Racheal or any other 2011 competitor's responsibilty to earn someone else a spot in 2012.

She earned her spot at the 2011 Worlds, and in my opinion if she wanted to skate injured, that was her right.


This. :respec:

Shah-reen
06-16-2011, 04:34 AM
Wow!:eek: Why do I feel as if Team USA is spinning out of control?!? Question, Did Frank Carroll blow the whistle or P. Hersch? Sorry, trying to piece it together. Still can't believe all of the post season chaos!:confused:

reese
06-16-2011, 04:36 AM
Wow!:eek: Why do I feel as if Team USA is spinning out of control?!? Question, Did Frank Carroll blow the whistle or P. Hersch? Sorry, trying to piece it together. Still can't believe all of the post season chaos!:confused:

Phil called Frank a week or so after Worlds to ask for his reaction.

IceAlisa
06-16-2011, 04:38 AM
I find some semblance of truth in each of the above comments...

As someone else mentioned, when was the last time a skater was fined and/or reprimanded for skating through an injury? Or at all? I'm just a little disturbed by this decision at all. Athletes of all sorts compete with and through injury all the time. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. The level of vitriol and calls for the guillotine being directed at this girl just boggles the mind.

Sad...

I don't recall anyone skating with a fractured tibia and not telling their fed. There are injuries and there are injuries. This one was major. Skating on a fractured metatarsal is not the same as skating on the fractured tibia.

The severity of the injury as well as the severity of her pain, not to mention failure to disclose in a timely fashion is what makes this case different.

Shah-reen
06-16-2011, 04:38 AM
oooooh gotcha. Thank you reese.

5Ali3
06-16-2011, 04:50 AM
On another forum, someone said that now no skater will ever admit to an injury for fear of this reprimand. Do you think this will just teach skaters to never admit to an injury after a competition?

Athletes admit injury to U.S. Figure Skating all the time. This is figure skating; almost no one makes it through a season without an injury. As U.S. Figure Skating has invested more money in athletes and international assignments, more accountability has been required by some combination of Sports Med, Athlete Performance, and the International Committee (sub-committee, I think, but I don't know the name). If you've been certified by Athlete Performance as ready for an international assignment and then become injured, you need to be monitored and re-certified. If it's something like a sprained ankle requiring a triple flip to be replaced with a triple toe, someone local will mosey out and watch the program, or you'll be asked to do an exhibition at a local competition, or maybe even send a video if it's really not a big deal. If the injury is a bit more serious or the competition is more important, you'll have a specialist, a judge, and maybe someone from High Performance arrange a monitoring session. If it's a step up or more contentious, an athlete rep might be included. If it's Michelle Kwan and the Olympics, you get all 250,000 members of U.S. Figure Skating plus every journalist in the U.S. ;) There are procedures. They are to be followed.

I only know of two instances when an athlete chose to withhold a serious medical condition or lie about a medical condition prior to an international competition. In the former situation, the coach fired the skater and called U.S. Figure Skating; the athlete was withdrawn from the competition and required to repay the cost of the plane ticket that was unused. In the latter situation, an athlete hid a 7-week pregnancy by claiming stomach flu; I recently had the chance to hold that baby's baby. :D


As was discussed in the other thread, the USFSA has some access to skaters' medical information, though no one who posted there seems to have personal knowledge as to exactly how much access.

It's largely based on self-disclosure; the Team USA rules allow USFS to refuse to name someone to an international team without providing certain information, but HIPAA prohibits the release of information without the athlete's permission.


She earned her spot at the 2011 Worlds, and in my opinion if she wanted to skate injured, that was her right.
No. At Worlds 2010, Rachel helped earned two spots for the United States; spots haven't been allocated to individual skaters in about two decades. Rachel was selected for the 2011 World Team based in her performance during the 2009-2011 seasons. The spot still belonged to the United States; part of the contract that Rachel (presumably) signed includes a requirement to notify U.S. Figure Skating of medical conditions that develop after the contract is signed. Figure skating isn't a right and representing the United States in competition isn't a right: it's a privilege.

VIETgrlTerifa
06-16-2011, 05:04 AM
5Ali3,

Thanks for the explanations. However, I did not write the third quote you quoted...the one that says:


She earned her spot at the 2011 Worlds, and in my opinion if she wanted to skate injured, that was her right.

That was someone else. :)

Triple Butz
06-16-2011, 05:24 AM
And she bombed at Nats (otherwise she'd have gone to Worlds) and bombed last year at Worlds (otherwise we would have had 3 spots this year and she would have gone to Worlds - see a trend?). I like Mirai, and I like Frank, but he needs to stop whining and focus on preparing his student for next season.

I imagine that the root of Frank's ire has nothing to do with Rachael. I'm willing to bet this is about some feud between Frank and Tom Z.

I have never seen the specific requirements the USFSA gives its int'l team members regarding reporting injuries, but if Rachael didn't follow them, I agree with the USFSA's actions. But I'm not sure it's realistic to think that Rachael made (or could make) the decision to tell or not to tell all by herself. Tom Z was likely a major driver in this and I think he should bear the brunt of the consequences, not Rachael.

So winning the sp and still finishing higher than the US Champ is bombing? Double standard much? And the quotes from Frank are from March, several months ago...it's not as if he's still "whining."

mikemba
06-16-2011, 05:24 AM
No. At Worlds 2010, Rachel helped earned two spots for the United States; spots haven't been allocated to individual skaters in about two decades.

You misunderstood what I meant. I wasn't talking at all about what Rachael did in 2010 (to help the US earn 2 spots).

And whether we use the term "right" or "privilege" does not really matter to me: my point is that she earned her spot on the US 2011 team by qualifying according to the USFS criteria, specifically, by her performance at 2011 US Nationals. That is what I was referring to with respect to Rachael earning her way onto the 2011 World team.

(By the way, if she broke a rule regarding notification I agree that she should be sanctioned. In my previous post, I was disagreeing with the idea that helping the US earn 3 spots for the next year is the main reason someone should be able to attend Worlds. My point is that Rachael earned her spot to go, even if she was likely to come in last place.)

stjeaskategym
06-16-2011, 05:29 AM
I also think blaming Rachael for costing the US 3 spots is utterly ridiculous. The US hasn't had 3 spots in ladies' skating in years.

I also disagree with whoever said Worlds is a team sport. It's not: it's an individual sport. Rachel is among the skaters, who by past performances, earned their spots to compete in 2011. It is not Rachael or any other 2011 competitor's responsibilty to earn someone else a spot in 2012.


I agree completely.


Kudos to Phil Hersh, Frank Carroll and the posters at Figure Skating Universe for keeping the heat on USFS to address this issue.

I thought Frank's comments to Hersh were ridiculous. Instead of stating that he was upset that his athlete was not notified that one of the girls had an injury that could potentially knock her out of Worlds, he said silly things like "Mirai blew the other girls out of the water". If Rachael had placed top 8, Frank wouldn't have said anything to the media, and I doubt USFS would have seriously looked into this. It wasn't right to not tell USFS about the stress fracture, but it's just unfortunate that this punishment/fine will always be associated with the fact that Rachael failed to skate well through injury. I would just feel better about this had Rachael skated well enough--- Then, we could be absolutely certain that this isn't just a reaction to her poor skate, Frank's whining, etc.

Debbie S
06-16-2011, 05:49 AM
So winning the sp and still finishing higher than the US Champ is bombing? Yes, for a skater of Mirai's caliber, placing 11th in the FS after 1st in the SP, with multiple jump mistakes including a fall on a 2axel, would be considered bombing in my book. As I said earlier, I like Mirai, but let's be honest here.

haribobo
06-16-2011, 05:56 AM
but it's just unfortunate that this punishment/fine will always be associated with the fact that Rachael failed to skate well through injury. I would just feel better about this had Rachael skated well enough--- Then, we could be absolutely certain that this isn't just a reaction to her poor skate, Frank's whining, etc.

Eh, things happen the way they are supposed to. Maybe this will encourage skaters to listen to their doctors more when they tell them to rest and not compete. And it should definitely encourage them to report injuries to the USFS. Chances are, when you're seriously injured and something is severely hampering your jumping ability, you're probably not going to do well. It's unfortunate, but so are a lot of things in life. Do the right thing by your fellow competitors and your country and withdraw or at least keep your fed in the loop! I'd actually feel worse if she skated well and disclosed the injury after skating, because then it would just send the message that 1) its ok to ignore USFS rules and 2) you should ignore what your doctor and your body are telling you and compete anyway.

I think what ended up happening is a very good cautionary tale for all other skaters/coaches/parents out there. And for that I feel good. I could care less how Rachael and Tom Z. are feeling at the moment. They deceived everyone and do not deserve my respect or concern. And of course she's allowed some leeway because she's young and young people make dumb mistakes. But her coach really knew better and chose anyway. Truly awful stuff. And I am just loving the exodus from the Zakrajsek camp. The Joshua Farris FS and kiss & cry incident was horrifying. Also, there are so many aspects of his and Becky's coaching that just stink. These last few years, the crap style and choreo that comes out of that camp is just sad. Its time for them to go away. Sorry I got a bit off topic but there you have it.