As a new season begins, its worth looking back at previous world championships in the lead up to the 2012 Worlds. Thought I would begin with the 1978 Worlds - perhaps remembered most for two skaters who didn't medal. Firstly, Vern Taylor, who performed the very first triple Axel in international competition, and secondly, Denise Biellmann, who despite another splendid free skate could still only finish fifth - showing once again that several years after Janet Lynn had retired, talented skaters were still being held back by the school figures. In my opinion, Denise Biellmann by today's standards was probably the best ladies singles figure skater of the late 1970's and early 1980's. These championships also marked the second consecutive year re the intense rivalry between Anett Potzsch and Linda Fratianne. On this occasion, Potzsch won. Ultimately, they would both end up with 2 world titles each and the rivalry would culminate in the highly controversial result at the 1980 Olympics - again won by Potzsch. However, there are many that argue that Fratianne should have won the Olympic title, and there are many others (me included) who believe that Biellmann should have won it. Biellmann actually won both the short program and the free skate during that Olympic competition, but because she finished 12th in the school figures - she didn't even get a medal!! Ludicrous. Hence, had the contest been held without the school figures, Biellmann would have won the Olympic title by a country mile. Here are some videos from the 1978 Worlds:- Mens Gold - Charles Tickner - USA Free Skate Silver - Jan Hoffmann - East Germany Free Skate Bronze - Robin Cousins - GBR Free Skate 12th - Vern Taylor - Can Free Skate Ladies Gold - Anett Potzsch - East Germany Free Skate Silver - Linda Fratianne - USA Free Skate Bronze - Susanna Driano - Italy Free Skate 5th - Denise Biellmann - Switzerland Free Skate Pairs Gold - Irina Rodnina & Alexander Zaitsev - USSR Long Program Silver - Manuela Mager & Uwe Bewerdorf - East Germany (No Video Available) Bronze - Tai Babilonia & Randy Gardner - USA Long Program Ice Dance Gold - Natalia Linichuk & Gennadi Karponosov - USSR Free Dance Silver - Irina Moiseeva & Andrei Minenkov - USSR (No Video Available) Bronze - Krisztina Regőczy & András Sallay - Hungary Free Dance Hope you enjoy - as you will observe, figure skating was a completely different world back then!