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View Full Version : U.S. Ladies [#5]: All That Glitters Is Not Gold



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jlai
10-21-2012, 07:21 PM
Gao has only been in college for about 2-3 months prior to SA and is a freshman. Depending on what her major will be and what classes she will take in the future, I'm sure it could have an impact on her training as she continue to maintain this dual schedule. Flatt, for example, has Physic labs and probably also group projects for engineering classes, which eat up quite a chunk out of her days.

But compare her with Emily Hughes when she was freshman, Gao still looks good, all things considered. I mean, for her to not only maintain her skating but skate one of her best shorts, as a full time freshman in college.

edonice
10-21-2012, 07:21 PM
Still, I'm tired of all the excuses from Flatt. In an interview in The Orange County Register (http://www.ocregister.com/sports/flatt-375235-skating-point.html), she talks about how school is her priority now, and that skating is taking the back seat, especially since tendonitis makes it difficult for her to train as hard as she'd like. I'm guessing that she's looking for excuses for her poor performances, but it's annoying to see her shrug off another lackluster, injury-laden performance when there are motivated young skaters who would love the opportunities she's been given.

If she's truly injured and not skating/training at her best, she should do what other skaters (Michelle Kwan, Evan Lysacek) have done and given her place to a skater who's hungry and prepared for it. Placing last when you know you're unprepared is insulting to the work other skaters put in.

Also, Gao is proving that you can attend an extremely high caliber university, adjust to a new rink and coaches, improve your skating, and handle it all with grace.

PDilemma
10-21-2012, 07:42 PM
Still, I'm tired of all the excuses from Flatt. In an interview in The Orange County Register (http://www.ocregister.com/sports/flatt-375235-skating-point.html), she talks about how school is her priority now, and that skating is taking the back seat, especially since tendonitis makes it difficult for her to train as hard as she'd like. I'm guessing that she's looking for excuses for her poor performances, but it's annoying to see her shrug off another lackluster, injury-laden performance when there are motivated young skaters who would love the opportunities she's been given.

If she's truly injured and not skating/training at her best, she should do what other skaters (Michelle Kwan, Evan Lysacek) have done and given her place to a skater who's hungry and prepared for it. Placing last when you know you're unprepared is insulting to the work other skaters put in.

Also, Gao is proving that you can attend an extremely high caliber university, adjust to a new rink and coaches, improve your skating, and handle it all with grace.

I think Rachael has reached the point where she is indulging in an exceedingly expensive hobby. Her parents must have plenty of money to continue to fund it.

judgejudy27
10-21-2012, 08:27 PM
My guess is this is the last GP assignment Flatt will ever be given. If she reaches the point she has to start qualifying for Nationals I wonder if she will continue skating, as at that point she will be clearly to the point of doing it just for the "love of it". She has already reached that point in reality, but she might well be deluded to that truth at this point.

I hope Wagner and Gold can get the U.S 3 spots back at this years Worlds so Gao, Czisny, and others have a spot to fight for the 2014 Olympics.

bek
10-21-2012, 08:36 PM
I think the main difference between Gao/Flatt is talent/puberty.. I think Rachael's jumps were going long before Stanford. And that has to do something with puberty. Whereas Christina seems to have perfect figure skating body...I seem to recall Rachael started out part time in school and Gao is going at it full time.

pinky166
10-21-2012, 09:00 PM
I think the main difference between Gao/Flatt is talent/puberty.. I think Rachael's jumps were going long before Stanford. And that has to do something with puberty. Whereas Christina seems to have perfect figure skating body...I seem to recall Rachael started out part time in school and Gao is going at it full time.

I think some of this is true. Rachael's achieved what she has in skating, and probably in school too, due to being a work horse. She's never been a naturally talented jumper and she's never had the ideal body for skating. So when she had time to train all the time and really keep her diet in check, she did well because she worked really really hard and was able to build up that consistency, plus school wasn't as hard for her. So now, she's in college where she has to travel farther to train, isn't training as much, and its harder to make sure you're eating properly and sleeping adequately to be in the best shape possible, her courses are harder for her and she admits to skating not being a top priority and being committed to having a normal college social life, so the result isn't surprising.

Gao on the other hand has always been a very talented jumper. She's also always had the ideal skating body, and if I'm being perfectly honest, having filled out a bit since college has actually helped her skating in terms of power and posture, she used to seem very gangly and round-shouldered, almost too skinny, but no longer does. Plus we know she got a perfect math SAT, so she's obviously naturally smart. Mark and Peter are better coaches than Rachael's new coaches, and SCOB is a lot closer to Harvard is than the rink Rachael trains at. So for Christina, she's probably not feeling as much of time crunch, nor is feeling as much academic pressure because she hasn't started her major coursework or labs yet and is likely naturally smarter than Rachael anyways, which means she's probably getting enough sleep, and does not have to worry so much about what she's eating because she's naturally thin and the little weight she has put on has helped her skating and image on the ice. So it's very different. Christina seems like an overachiever too, but maybe not the same kind of work horse as Rachael, she used to get pretty visibly upset and frustrated when she didn't skate well so now that she's a Harvard student, there's less pressure put on her by herself, her coaches, and her fans so she seems to be enjoying her skating more. From the sounds of it, Christina also isn't as intent on having a typical college experience while insisting on continuing to skate like Rachael, who is in a sorority and regularly attends events like football games.

demetriosj
10-21-2012, 09:20 PM
I hope Wagner and Gold can get the U.S 3 spots back at this years Worlds .

Gold's senior outings have been just mediocre. If she's the presumptive #1 or #2 spot, she really needs to start showing it IMHO. There are other talented skaters out there just as hungry as she is to go to Worlds this year.

burntBREAD
10-21-2012, 10:59 PM
Looks like picking Christina might have been a bad decision for TEB. :) Great performance.

victoriaheidi
10-21-2012, 11:02 PM
:cheer: Ashley and Christina!

Sylvia
10-21-2012, 11:05 PM
Congratulations to Ashley Wagner on her first GP gold & to Christina Gao on her first GP & senior international medal (silver) at Skate America! :)

smarts1
10-21-2012, 11:29 PM
Shocked by Christina's performances! I would have never guessed that she'd ever get an international GP medal... ever. As for Christina's performances and juggling college, I wouldn't say that's a safe bet quite yet that she's juggling skating and school well... After all, it's only been a couple months since school has started for her. But I am excited to see what she does later in the season. And congrats to Ashley on her first gold as well! She is definitely a top contender for World Team now as well as another National cahmpionships.

Vagabond
10-22-2012, 12:12 AM
I think some of this is true. Rachael's achieved what she has in skating, and probably in school too, due to being a work horse. She's never been a naturally talented jumper and she's never had the ideal body for skating. So when she had time to train all the time and really keep her diet in check, she did well because she worked really really hard and was able to build up that consistency, plus school wasn't as hard for her. So now, she's in college where she has to travel farther to train, isn't training as much, and its harder to make sure you're eating properly and sleeping adequately to be in the best shape possible, her courses are harder for her and she admits to skating not being a top priority and being committed to having a normal college social life, so the result isn't surprising.

Gao on the other hand has always been a very talented jumper. She's also always had the ideal skating body, and if I'm being perfectly honest, having filled out a bit since college has actually helped her skating in terms of power and posture, she used to seem very gangly and round-shouldered, almost too skinny, but no longer does. Plus we know she got a perfect math SAT, so she's obviously naturally smart. Mark and Peter are better coaches than Rachael's new coaches, and SCOB is a lot closer to Harvard is than the rink Rachael trains at. So for Christina, she's probably not feeling as much of time crunch, nor is feeling as much academic pressure because she hasn't started her major coursework or labs yet and is likely naturally smarter than Rachael anyways, which means she's probably getting enough sleep, and does not have to worry so much about what she's eating because she's naturally thin and the little weight she has put on has helped her skating and image on the ice. So it's very different. Christina seems like an overachiever too, but maybe not the same kind of work horse as Rachael, she used to get pretty visibly upset and frustrated when she didn't skate well so now that she's a Harvard student, there's less pressure put on her by herself, her coaches, and her fans so she seems to be enjoying her skating more. From the sounds of it, Christina also isn't as intent on having a typical college experience while insisting on continuing to skate like Rachael, who is in a sorority and regularly attends events like football games.

Are you as presumptuous and offensive off line as you are in this post?

How on earth do you know that Gao is "likely naturally smarter" than Flatt? Do you know what Gao's How do you know that Gao "isn't as much as a work horse" as Rachael? How do you know whether Flatt has any difficulty at all eating properly? How do you know that Gao isn't just as sociable as Flatt? And what, exactly do you mean that Flat has "never had the ideal body for skating"? By all accounts from those who have actually seen her in person, she is thin and fit -- usually exactly the right body type for skating.

Jammers
10-22-2012, 12:12 AM
I have a feeling that some of the skaters that we've been watching for awhile like Mirai and Alissa and maybe Caroline won't be a factor by 2014. With Ashley securing herself as the US number one and Agnes, Gracie and maybe Gao and someone on the rise like Angela Wang we might be see a changing of the guard by 2014. Nationals in 2014 will be a brutal fight.

bek
10-22-2012, 12:25 AM
Are you as presumptuous and offensive off line as you are in this post?

How on earth do you know that Gao is "likely naturally smarter" than Flatt? Do you know what Gao's How do you know that Gao "isn't as much as a work horse" as Rachael? How do you know whether Flatt has any difficulty at all eating properly? How do you know that Gao isn't just as sociable as Flatt? And what, exactly do you mean that Flat has "never had the ideal body for skating"? By all accounts from those who have actually seen her in person, she is thin and fit -- usually exactly the right body type for skating.

I can't talk about their bodies in person but I always thought Rachael's jumps were a bit heavy and eeked out.. Gao's jumps have always appeared easier for her. As for her whose naturally smarter well that's a little tough to tell. Hard to tell. Especially since most of us haven't had the opportunity to read their papers, talk to them etc.

pinky166
10-22-2012, 12:45 AM
Are you as presumptuous and offensive off line as you are in this post?

How on earth do you know that Gao is "likely naturally smarter" than Flatt? Do you know what Gao's How do you know that Gao "isn't as much as a work horse" as Rachael? How do you know whether Flatt has any difficulty at all eating properly? How do you know that Gao isn't just as sociable as Flatt? And what, exactly do you mean that Flat has "never had the ideal body for skating"? By all accounts from those who have actually seen her in person, she is thin and fit -- usually exactly the right body type for skating.

Okay so commentators were talking about how Gao got a perfect score on her math SAT, they didn't say the same thing for Rachael, so I'm assuming she didn't. Rachael applied to Harvard and didn't get in, Gao got in to both Harvard and Stanford. So based on that, I think it's safe to assume Christina is probably naturally smarter.

Also, did you see Christina and Rachael as little kids? Christina was as gangly and skinny as a colt, while even at her thinnest as a young teen, Rachael never had that gangly tween look, ever. So I'm assuming genetics play a factor into this. They are both competitive skaters and train a lot, so their difference in body types has to be explained by genetics and/or eating habits. Also has anyone ever said Rachael Flatt has the exactly right body type for skating?? If they have I've certainly missed it.

Anyways, any skater at this level works really hard, I'm not denying that. But for Rachael, extremely hard work on her skating was necessary for her to be competitive at the top level, whereas for Christina, because she's such a great natural jumper and has her body type working in her favor, she maybe doesn't need to be dedicating all her time to skating to be competitive at an international level.

As for socialization, I have no idea, I'm just judging from twitter and articles. Rachael talks about being in a sorority, going to football games, and regularly tweets about Stanford events, while as for Christina, I saw a picture of her hanging out with Ross Miner and Harrison Choate at the rink on a Friday, so I kind of assumed that meant she wasn't at a rager instead.

Sorry to sound presumptious, but really, some things just come easier to people. Hard work will only get you so far.