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



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GarrAarghHrumph
10-22-2012, 03:25 PM
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.

Rachael studies engineering. Stanford is the #2 undergraduate engineering school in the US. Harvard ranks more like #26. Stanford is seen as a stronger engineering school than Harvard is. So Rachel attending Stanford for engineering is in no way a step down from a place like Harvard - it's in fact a step up.

pinky166
10-22-2012, 03:28 PM
Your post about Rachael was so uncalled for. And you didn't mean to tear her down?? Who are you fooling. :rolleyes: You're always tearing down skaters you don't like.

I was defending her past accomplishments by saying she's an extremely hard worker and that was why she was able to get to the level she got to a few seasons ago, but now she no longer has the time or arrangements to accommodate that kind of schedule due to being a full-time student at Stanford and having a long commute to the rink and making time for normal college activities and thus her results have suffered. That's it. To be at a competitive level internationally, Rachael probably needed to be training 40 hours a week or however much she was training when she was with Tom Z in CO springs. For Christina, maybe 20 hours a week is enough so she's able to maintain her skating level or even improve it while being in college due to new coaches or motivation.

pinky166
10-22-2012, 03:37 PM
Rachel studies engineering. Stanford is the #2 undergraduate engineering school in the US. Harvard ranks more like #26.

I thought she was studying biology pre-med? Anyways, Rachael as a sophomore has more on her plate academically than Christina as a new freshman so we'll see if Christina can keep this calliber of skating up. She just took her 1st set of midterms, the first half of a semester tends not to be that tough in my experience at school, but then the 2nd half of the semester, projects and tests and papers pile up, finals are on the horizon, and bringing up grades that may not be what you wanted earlier in the semester become a top priority, and it's a lot more stressful, busier, for me at least, it's always harder to find a right balance and get enough sleep, exercise smart, and eat well. If Christina can keep this up then wow, kudos to her, that's amazing, but it's still early.

As for Rachael, she's always had a number of things working against her - low jumps, bulging disks in her back, not much flexibility or extension, not the ideal body shape. She used to work her tail off and got the jumps really consistent and regularly hit 3-3s and 7 triple FS programs so she was up there, when you're landing that kind of content, the judges don't really have a choice but to give you at least decent PCS. Plus for awhile there, her spins were a little better, maybe because her back was bothering her less then. I think people underestimate just how hard working and dedicated to her skating Rachael was before college, and now she's admitted it's not her 1st priority anymore. Therefore, her results and scores make perfect sense.

Jammers
10-22-2012, 03:57 PM
If skating isn't her 1st priority anymore then maybe it's time to called it a career. Does she really want to keep finishing in or near last place? It was hard to watch her yesterday. She seemed so out of shape and not in the same league as some of the middle of the road skaters let alone someone like Wagner or Gao.

victoriaheidi
10-22-2012, 04:30 PM
The part of this that really irks me is that GP assignments (for those who aren't seeded or top 25) aren't a right. They're a privilege and an honor, and by openly admitting that she typically skates for just an hour and a half a day and doesn't consider skating a priority, she makes it clear that, to her, a GP or two per season is an expectation. And she doesn't seem to expect the scores she's getting, even though everyone else could spot then a mile away.

IMO, she made it clear that skating wasn't her priority when she chose Stanford, because no one could really identify which top coach(es) worked in the area. That's fine; honestly, in the long run, school and her future are far more important than skating.

But then, don't take a GP spot that dozens of girls WORK to achieve.

My mom saw Rachael and said, "if that's her attitude, she shouldn't be skating competitively anymore."

leafygreens
10-22-2012, 05:06 PM
Rachael claims she has had the same "Chronic tendonitis" for the past two years. It's the same old tendonitis excuse for all of her recent competition failures. She needs to rest her body before doing permanent damage, or pack it up and go home. It's painful to watch her, like blades are glued to the ice. In the end it's her decision to put herself out there in sub-par condition, as long as the USFS keeps throwing her competitions.

http://web.icenetwork.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20121021&content_id=39967142&vkey=ice_news

demetriosj
10-22-2012, 05:36 PM
[QUOTE=Jammers;3719595]If skating isn't her 1st priority anymore then maybe it's time to called it a career./QUOTE]

and who are you to decide this for her?

How many skaters have made skating their "1st priority", only to be tossed to the wayside by USFS once they are injured and not in top form? Good for her to keep skating if she decides to. Don't know why it bothers you so much.

leafygreens
10-22-2012, 06:04 PM
[QUOTE=Jammers;3719595]If skating isn't her 1st priority anymore then maybe it's time to called it a career./QUOTE]

and who are you to decide this for her?

How many skaters have made skating their "1st priority", only to be tossed to the wayside by USFS once they are injured and not in top form? Good for her to keep skating if she decides to. Don't know why it bothers you so much.

Because it makes the whole country look bad.

Yeah, it's admirable that she's skating and going to school. Nobody is arguing that. But she can do smaller competitions and shows if it's all about the "love" of skating. When she shows up multiple years in a row with the same problems and injury, there are even juniors that can surpass her at this point.

She can skate for the love of it as long as USFS keeps throwing her a bone, but why would they when it reflects on the country. In the end it doesn't matter what priority Rachael is making skating, if she can't skate at the correct level then it's time to go home. She's not the only skater in school so that's not a good enough excuse.

LilJen
10-22-2012, 06:47 PM
Rachael claims she has had the same "Chronic tendonitis" for the past two years. It's the same old tendonitis excuse for all of her recent competition failures. She needs to rest her body before doing permanent damage, or pack it up and go home. It's painful to watch her, like blades are glued to the ice. In the end it's her decision to put herself out there in sub-par condition, as long as the USFS keeps throwing her competitions.

http://web.icenetwork.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20121021&content_id=39967142&vkey=ice_news

As far as I know, tendonitis requires COMPLETE rest to heal. It may be that she's done some resting, but not *quite* enough, and then she gets back on the ice and trains with great intensity to make up for lost time, and BAM! Tendonitis again. Doesn't seem like she wants to take a year off, but that might be the best thing for her body.

Jammers
10-22-2012, 06:57 PM
It's time for Rachael to retire or for the USFSA to retire her. Rachael was out of shape and admitted that skating isn't her priority anymore. So why waste a spot on her when there are hungrier and better skaters waiting in the wings? And i don't care how high she finished at Nationals last year. Overall she was less then mediocre last season and they need to take that into consideration and not just go by Nationals. Even a skater having a bad year can have one good skate like Rachael did but they needed to look at her skating for the whole season not just Nationals. I hope she doesn't get a GP event next year after this bad performance.

Vagabond
10-22-2012, 07:07 PM
I have never been a particular fan of Rachael Flatt, though I did rather like her skating at 2007 U.S. Nationals (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8hvYIYkNjfM) when she was fourteen.

I don't think there is anything wrong with someone's treating competitive skating as a hobby and accepting invitations to international events provided that she is healthy and fit, which Flatt apparently is. If other skaters want those assignments, let them earn them, whether at Nationals or at a competition where they can get a higher Season's Best Score.

That said, I would expect the USFSA to stop giving her international assignments unless she steps up her performance level markedly at Nationals, and her Total Score at Skate America is likely to put her so far down the Season's Best list that she may not be eligible for any Grand Prix invitations from the five other host federations.

ETA:


Rachael claims she has had the same "Chronic tendonitis" for the past two years. It's the same old tendonitis excuse for all of her recent competition failures. She needs to rest her body before doing permanent damage, or pack it up and go home. It's painful to watch her, like blades are glued to the ice. In the end it's her decision to put herself out there in sub-par condition, as long as the USFS keeps throwing her competitions.

http://web.icenetwork.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20121021&content_id=39967142&vkey=ice_news

In that case, the USFSA or her parents and coaches may need to intervene.

It's not unusual for elite athletes of her age to disregard the possible consequences of continuing train and compete in the face of chronic injuries, but those around them should be more responsible.

Jammers
10-22-2012, 07:10 PM
I have never been a particular fan of Rachael Flatt, though I did rather like her skating at 2007 U.S. Nationals (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8hvYIYkNjfM) when she was fourteen.

I don't think there is anything wrong with someone's treating competitive skating as a hobby and accepting invitations to international events provided that she is healthy and fit, which Flatt apparently is. If other skaters want those assignments, let them earn them, whether at Nationals or at a competition where they can get a higher Season's Best Score.

That said, I would expect the USFSA to stop giving her international assignments unless she steps up her performance level markedly at Nationals, and her Total Score at Skate America is likely to put her so far down the Season's Best list that she may not be eligible for any Grand Prix invitations from the five other host federations.

You think Flatt looked fit?

judgejudy27
10-22-2012, 08:26 PM
It's time for Rachael to retire or for the USFSA to retire her. Rachael was out of shape and admitted that skating isn't her priority anymore. So why waste a spot on her when there are hungrier and better skaters waiting in the wings? And i don't care how high she finished at Nationals last year. Overall she was less then mediocre last season and they need to take that into consideration and not just go by Nationals. Even a skater having a bad year can have one good skate like Rachael did but they needed to look at her skating for the whole season not just Nationals. I hope she doesn't get a GP event next year after this bad performance.

I concur and I highly doubt she will get an international assigment next year and I am guessing her placement at Nationals will mean having to quailfy for Nationals next year. If all this is true I expect she will quietly retire.

Vagabond
10-22-2012, 08:28 PM
You think Flatt looked fit?

Looked fit? Yes. She skated a clean five-triple Free Skate with no obvious errors other than doing a solo 2F instead of a 3F combo. Her skating has been better in the past, but that wouldn't necessarily mean she wasn't fit this past weekend.

Actually was fit? No, given what leaftygreens posted above. But I would have no way of knowing that from watching her Free Skate.

pinky166
10-22-2012, 09:01 PM
Honestly, it sort of confuses me, Rachael we know has had chronic tendonitis for around two years and bulging disks in her back for even longer. Now skating is not a priority. So why does she continue if she's constantly injured and/or in pain, has to go out of her way to train, and isn't getting good results at competitions? It's weird the commentators were talking about how Rachael's 6th place finish at Nationals was "disappointing" for her, but for most of us watching the event, it seemed like Rachael really stepped it up and had a great FS that, combined with Mirai's meltdown, allowed her to finish as high as 6th. Had she skated like she did most of last season, she would likely have been out of the top 12. And even here at Skate America, I'll say I was surprised when Rachael landed 5 triples in her FS, I was not expecting that, but she still finished 9th and her PCS were really low and that's an indication of how she's viewed on the international stage now.

I could understand if Rachael was skating for Germany or Switzerland and she was the best skater they had to send to these international events and therefore she was sticking around just because she could and didn't have to worry about taking a more deserving skater's spot, but in my opinion, it would have been in much better character for USFS to give someone like Samantha Cesario, Vanessa Lam, or Kiri Baga the spot at SA, not only giving them valuable international experience but also opening up spots they were taking on the JGP that really should be given to skaters like Polina Edmunds and Mariah Bell, who are developing junior skaters and thus the perfect candidates for JGP events. Further, we all know Flatt was given Ice Challenge just so she doesn't have to skate at Sectionals out of which she likely would not qualify for Nationals (regardless of if she competed at PACs or Mids, both are deep fields), so its kind of silly. If she really loves to skate that much despite her injuries, pain, interference with college life, and results and scores indicative of how far her skating caliber has sunken compared to what it once was, at least in the eyes of the judges, then I don't have a problem with that. But she should be competing at qualifying competitions, not GP events. If she wants to skate regionals and sectionals and makes it to Nationals fair and square, good for her, it shows that she's still one of the best skaters in the Nation and can get to Nationals without any questionable loopholes. But these international assignments that conveniently give her byes from these competitions when she's in the current form she's in are really irritating. There's so many other good girls in the US who would love the chance to skate at SA, and maybe USFS should stop encouraging them to stay on the JGP if they are ready and willing to move up just to save spots for old favorites or crowd getters and give the JGP spots to junior ladies who really should be competing at those venues in the first place.