The wonderful Ashley Wagner

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by martyross, Nov 18, 2012.

  1. UGG

    UGG Well-Known Member

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    Her work ethic made me a HUGE fan. I was NOT a fan in 2010, especially when she started talking about what she wanted her Olympic experience to be and she had not even made the team yet (and didn't). But last year I gained so much respect for her. Everything was Mirai this and Mirai that and ummm...yeah. Ashley decided that if you talk the talk, you have to walk the walk. And she did it!!! You can tell she WANTS to be a champion. Her drive is so apparent. It is so nice to see after 5 years of blah-ness. US Ladies need Ashley and hopefully Mirai and others will use her as an inspiration. you either have the drive or you don't.
     
    dinakt and (deleted member) like this.
  2. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    ^^ Oh yes, it really seems like many of the U.S. ladies are more inspired this season, and I'm extremely happy to see Ms. Ash, skating's very own Nike Woman, creating her unique brand of inspiration and leading the way!

    Thanks martyross, for starting this uber thread for Ashley. :)

    I echo what many posters have already stated re Ashley's drive and the spark of something special that many of us saw in her prior to her recent success. Last season she backed everything up (her talent, her desire, and what her fans saw in her from the beginning). And this season, she's taking her talent and desire to a new level! Ashley always had the goods but for a whole slew of reasons she missed out (e.g., others being more appreciated; faltering slightly when it mattered; not managing the nerves under pressure; wanting it too much and not knowing how to achieve the right balance between drive, desire, and steady performance; and most of all, needing to fully believe in herself and her dreams and be willing to commit and make sacrifices).

    Ashley's right about having been "almost" there but not quite making it. I give Ashley a great deal of credit and send out a happy roar of approval and tremendous admiration for the fact she did not allow heartbreak to define her. Sometimes going through the fire is necessary to hone and polish a diamond. I suppose hard times can either make or break who we are. I'm so stoked that Ashley was determined not to let go of her dreams. She found her Yoda (John Nicks) :) who guided her to uncover the pot of gold that she always possessed deep within. Ashley and Mr. Nicks make a great team, along with Philip Mills (superb choreo, music and costumes)!

    Perhaps Ashley's biggest fans have always been out there expressing approval, keeping our fingers crossed and rooting silently or sending direct vocal support to her on Twitter and Facebook. I think it usually takes a measure of success for a skater before fans might begin joining forces re a thread (and others hopping on the bandwagon out of sheer respect). In Ashley's case, I think many of her fans have been holding our breaths, just happy to enjoy and continue supporting her in various threads. I think we can exhale a bit now and enjoy the journey. Like someone said up-thread, Ashley's confident performances that she "nailed" at TEB had spark and calm, all the more amazing since she was battling a cold.

    While I think Ashley is still working on defining and discovering her identity on the ice, it is so lovely seeing her grow as an artist and as a confident athlete, right in front of our eyes. No matter what happens in the future, Ashley has already provided me with fond skating memories I will always cherish. We all have our favorites and we all have different perceptions (e.g., all those who see something of other skaters in Ashley). I believe Ashley has been inspired by Michelle Kwan (as are many skaters and countless fans), and perhaps some see in Ashley a bit of Lipinski's spunk and desire, and some of Trenary's gorgeous skating, but for me overall I think Ashley is her own creation. ITA, victoriaheidi, Debrah, and many others re your sentiments!

    As I've said before in a different venue, slightly different wording: Ashley seems prepared to perform with gallant flair, unflinching determination, and inimitable panache, come rain or come shine. ;) Bring on the swag, Ms. Ash! :encore:

    Since there have been other threads with links to articles about Ashley, and tweets and blogs by Ashley, I thought it would be nice to merge some of those links in this thread. So, I'll do that in another post. Thanks again all. I enjoyed reading your posts!
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012
  3. merrywidow

    merrywidow Well-Known Member

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    I'm enjoying her so much now that we can see how happy she is & I feel the Trenery vibe too but even more she reminds me of Jenny Kirk.
     
  4. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    ^^ :) I don't really see or sense all these other skaters in Ashley that much, but maybe there are elements of different qualities you guys are perceiving. One thing about Jenny and Ashley to me is just they both came through a lot of difficulties and soul-searching but never gave up on bringing out their best to the fore (in Jenny's case much more through her writing now, but also in sparkling moments on the ice).

    Originally posted by Sylvia in another thread:
    Ashley Wagner tweeted today(11/8): My new ESPNW blog is up..I talk about Japan Open and Skate America, check it out!
    See Sylvia's post below for correct link to Ashley's blog re JO and SA

    Ashley's First ESPN blog:
    http://espn.go.com/espnw/blog/post/1985/i-get-do-love-every-day

    Originally posted by Sylvia in another thread:
    Exciting sponsor news tweeted by Ashley today (11/8):
    It's official...I'm a Nike girl!! Thanks @Nike for this incredible opportunity! #nikewomen #nikefuel #dreamcometrue

    Article link originally posted in another thread by Boston2014:
    http://www.boston2014.com/featured-skaters/ashley-wagner/#more-634

    Ashley's Official Site
    http://www.figureskatersonline.com/ashleywagner/


    USFS compilation -- Ashley Wagner, U.S. National Ladies Champion 2012
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LidE3Kx6WM0

    U.S. Nats sp 2012 Pollock
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uqLGwmQAd8M

    U.S. Nats fp 2012 Black Swan
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yC2uhyIiBss

    Worlds Nice fp 2012 Black Swan
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXc8UO8WLTQ

    Japan Open fp 2012 Samson & Delilah
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJMDkYMfy7c

    SA sp 2012 Red Violin
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9SNWS0K1crY

    SA fp 2012 Samson & Delilah
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=skAe_DMQOTc

    TEB sp 2012 Red Violin
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9mHepUw918

    TEB fp 2012 Samson & Delilah
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f9s0jnZEI-g

    Ashley Wagner's Page vlogs
    http://www.youtube.com/user/ashwagner2010?feature=results_main

    'Almost Girl' No More Montage
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sb5jqOwifqs

    Originally posted by Sylvia in another thread:
    Ashley's cover story article from the October (digital) issue of SKATING magazine is available to be read online: http://skatingmagazineblog.com/2012/11/05/skating-magazine-october-issue/

    I was glad to see in the above article that Priscilla Hill's coaching of Ashley is highlighted. Also, the article I linked above that was originally posted by Boston2014, mentions another of Ashley's formative coaches, Shirley Hughes.

    Since Joannie has been mentioned, I'm linking Joannie's Samson & Delilah skate at 2010 Olympics:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyzkQQms3rA

    I'd forgotten that Miki Ando also skated to Samson & Delilah:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=js6OblvcBMU

    What I see between Joannie and Ashley is that they share somewhat similar athletic body types and they both exude a very compelling femininity with equal parts power and grace. However, I think their personalities are very different and their interpretations of Samson & Delilah are also very different. They both used different musical versions of the score too, I believe. I think Ashley displays more fierceness and more expressive nuances, but they both exhibit a fighting spirit.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012
  5. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to Nationals!

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    aftershocks, many of the links posted originally don't work above because you didn't copy them over in their entirety.

    October 2012 issue of Skating magazine with Ashley on the cover: http://skatingmagazineblog.com/2012/11/05/skating-magazine-october-issue/

    Ashley's first two entries in her espnW blog: http://espn.go.com/espnw/blog/category/ashley-wagner/

    ETA that Ashley made the News (not Sports) section of the Orange County (CA) Register online edition with her second GP gold in Paris: http://www.ocregister.com/news/wagner-378222-prix-grand.html
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012
  6. robinhood

    robinhood Active Member

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    Ashley is in amazing form this season and skating with a determination I don't see in any other skater.
    I wish she would show much more multi-directional skating in her free program. Although it's a very well choreographed program that highlights her strenghts it's all skated clockwise
     
  7. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    Wow, really? I hadn't noticed that. Is that out of the ordinary? Do you think it was strategically planned choreography or an oversight? Does she usually skate more multi-directionally? Did she skate mostly clockwise in her sp too? Do most skaters skate more multi-directionally? None of this ever occurred to me when I was watching her skate! I would imagine you'd have to be in the arena to know for sure whether she skated her program completely clockwise or multi-directionally since the camera does cut occasionally. Did you happen to be in the arena watching?

    Ashley is definitely in great form. There was a video posted somewhere of Ashley on a local morning show demonstrating some of the exercises she does to stay fit. Maybe someone can find and post it. Also, I look forward to seeing a video posted of Ashley on this morning's Today program. Thanks in advance. :)


    Thanks so much Sylvia! Cutting and pasting links doesn't always work well for me. I went back to fix those links. They should all work now.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2012
  8. kwanatic

    kwanatic Well-Known Member

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    I couldn't have said it better myself! :)

    I've always admired Ashley's attack...all the way back in 2008. The problem was her confidence bordered on cockiness and often stepped over the line to cockiness back then. She had all of the talent but there was something missing there. I always found Ashley more entertaining than Rachael but, given that Rachael was Miss Consistency back then and Ashley was prone to mistakes, Ashley never really broke through. Even though she hadn't really had that breakthrough she carried herself as if she was just "all that and then some." At the time, when she hadn't won anything, it was annoying and I didn't really care for her attitude.

    But last year...man, she just blossomed! That move to Nicks was the best thing that ever happened to her. He just smoothed her out and toned her down. Instead of "YEAH! I'm Ashley Wagner BIATCH!" there was this subtle confidence and sureness that continued to build all season long, culminating in her showing at nationals. When I posted on my blog at the end of the GP last year I said Ashley was the one American lady who had something to prove and that she was the one to watch out for. Glad to know I was right!

    I love her confidence. I love how she performs and blends everything in so well. I'm really impressed with how she has stepped up and pulled herself up to the top. It's not like there was a lot of hype surrounding Ashley when she came in. She's had to build her way up to where she is now and I think that's why I respect her so much. She's worked for it and earned it.

    I'm proud of her. :)
     
  9. robinhood

    robinhood Active Member

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    I wasn't in the arena, no. I've only watched the skating on tv or by youtube.
    Anyway, I'm no technik at all and maybe I notice it more because Ashley is lefty and I'm not used to see it. But just comparing the program with Rochette's I notice much more changes of direction in her program: the spiral sequence, to the entrance of the second lutz and the second salchow. The only change of direction I notice in Ashley's program is the entrance of the first loop (with an amazing spread eagle:swoon: has to be said) and very briefly.
    Again, I am not trying to dimish Ashley's skates, as in fact I think her interpretation is much more punctuated and energetic than Joannie's. I just noticed that and I hope they correct it in the future, because for me she's skating almost the same pattern all of the time
     
  10. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    I must admit a year or two ago I thought Wagner was destined to a career of being Mrs. 3rd and 4th place which is what she had been ever since winning the bronze at the 2007 World Juniors, and constantly in the shadows of Zhang, Czisny, Nagasu, and Flatt. I am glad she has broken out of that finally.
     
  11. CantALoop

    CantALoop Well-Known Member

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    I wasn't always a fan of Ashley's, but I think missing out on the 2010 Olympics poured gasoline on that spark she always had in her.

    What I love about Ashley is she always has attack and fire in her programs, and before 2012, it was like you could feel she wanted a National Championship more than any of the other girls.

    After seeing how most of the U.S. ladies since 2006 wilted under the spotlight once they were thought to be the leading U.S lady (Flatt, Czisny, Nagasu, Zhang, etc.), it's great to see a U.S. Champion that always skates like she wants to win.

    I'm sick and tired of U.S. ladies that skate like they're an injured deer caught in a car's headlights.
     
  12. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

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    Now if only Gracie can get that eye of the tiger look back too. But it took Ashley years to get where she is so it might be expecting to much for Gold to make it to Sochi though she has the goods if she keeps improving.
     
  13. CantALoop

    CantALoop Well-Known Member

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    I hope that come Nationals, the judges don't do Gracie any favors in PCS like they did with Flatt and Czisny.

    I think part of the reason why Ashley has more attack is that she was never given any favors or generous PCS marks at Nationals. I think that made her have more of a work ethic, and I hope USFSA doesn't spoil Gracie like they did by trying to anoint "it" girls of days past.
     
  14. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    ^^ Hey, lots to agree with in what all of you guys have to say. I just read some of these later posts after I wrote down my below thoughts, so many of us think alike.

    Thanks robinhood for your further comments. I wonder re the directional issue. Maybe it does have something to do with left-handedness or right-handedness. I don't know, and I didn't really notice directional changes. Usually programs these days are reworked throughout a season. I'll have to take another look at Ashley's and Joannie's performances re directional changes.

    I think Ashley was a bit overshadowed first by Mirai and Caroline during Junior competitive days, and then by Mirai, Rachael and Alissa for the first arc of her senior career. And that could have been that, except Ashley did some soul-searching as she has already described, and she decided that she was not going to give up on her dreams.

    Last season, some fans did not seem fully convinced of Ashley's capabilities, and she still has detractors out there (probably new naysayers will appear too even as her profile continues to rise). Whatever "cockiness" others have perceived in Ashley, I've never seen it as cockiness. I'd describe it more as fierce determination and belief. Maybe the problem was she just needed to reach a different level with her training and discover how to channel her energies and her so-called "cockiness" in the right direction. Once Ashley learned how to prepare and how to train and how to manage her nerves in a positive way, she's gone about backing up that unfailing and unflagging belief in herself.

    I've always liked something about Ashley. Even if she wasn't always my favorite, I always pulled for her and felt she deserved to make the World team and the Olympics too in 2010. I always loved her spunk and her fighting spirit. I truly never felt any sense of "Yeah, I'm Ashley Wagner BIATCH," coming from Ashley, at all. Although, I did get a sense of her wanting it too much and letting the nerves derail her a bit. I also felt she was simply under-appreciated earlier in her career. I thought she was kind of questioning, "Why them, and not me?" But that's okay, that's normal behavior. It's getting beyond that type of thinking that's harder to accomplish. Finally, perhaps, Ashley let go of her former questioning and comparing, and began asking herself, "What is it going to take? Do I have what it takes? What am I willing to give and to give up in order to work harder for my dreams?"

    Mr. Nicks (as he indicates in the USFS compilation clip) saw something in Ashley too. And he has expertly guided her to another level. But it is Ashley herself coming to the fore, not so much "toned down" as she is honed to the core. Not distracted by other competitors but concentrated on what she knows she can do. She amazed me last season with her calm confidence and renewed sense of purpose, and gracefulness combined with powerful attack. The blossoming didn't come overnight, and she ain't done yet. I'm looking forward to seeing Ashley continue to bloom and to shine.
     
  15. centerstage01

    centerstage01 Well-Known Member

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    Up until last year I was not a fan of Ashley at all. I did think she was cocky and couldn't back up her words to her performances. But the move to Nicks was a great one and her Black Swan program finally won me over.

    I like that she skates to win rather than skating not to lose. There's a difference. I don't want to see arrogance, I want to see confidence. Ashley's finally got that confidence and it's fantastic. When you're confident, you don't have to show off or talk smack because you know you can go out there and get it done. I'm really hoping that Ashley's confidence will rub off on other ladies and everyone can give their best performances. Those are the best kind of competitions to watch. And here's to Ashley medaling at (or winning!) the GPF and Worlds. I think Nationals is hers to lose and quite honestly, as much as I like several other skaters, I don't think they can hold a candle to her programs this season. Red Violin and Samson & Delilah are just that good.
     
  16. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    ^^ Oh well, I never read cocky in Ashley's words or demeanor. I guess it came off that way to some of you guys. Sometimes an athlete might talk big in order to convince themselves, or simply because they believe in themselves, not because they are necessarily "cocky" in a negative or arrogant sense. The move to Mr. Nicks was fortuitous and from this juncture perhaps fated, but it didn't come at all easily for Ashley based on what she has described in her blogs and interviews. They look like a match made in heaven, but obviously it was Ashley's personal reassessment, the difficult decisions and the hard work under Mr. Nick's tutelage (which was not simple either) that has led to Ashley taking her skating to a new level.

    I believe she always desired to skate to win, but did not know how to channel the desire to win in the right direction competitively. I don't think she ever lacked confidence, it's just that now she has all the tools and necessary preparation to back up her innate confidence. She has a level of calm now to go along with her belief in her talent. She understands also that there will be more pressures placed on her, but she seems willing and able to withstand the pressures, especially after facing and overcoming the obstacles that confronted her in the past. I also admire the way Ashley is so supportive to her friends, some of whom are fellow competitors.

    I think Ashley's success and the way she has carried herself this season and last has already "rubbed off" on other ladies, in both the national and international ranks. :) I agree that her programs (including music, choreo, and costumes) are strong and well thought out, and very suited to her talent and personality.


    Sometimes there is a trial by fire which lifts an athlete to another level, but it could just as easily lead to their downfall, just as receiving "favors" could also lead to a downfall, or not. There's many factors involved, including talent level, work ethic, coaching, and often plain luck. Plus, how we each respond to a given situation is based on who we are as individuals. Ashley made the decision that she was not going to give up, and she made sacrifices and things came together for her. The path is not always the same for everyone. Ashley has always had "attack" in her skating, so I don't think that Ashley's "attack" is due to her "never being given any favors or generous PCS." I agree it probably did help Ashley in some ways that she came to a crossroads and had to make some hard decisions. But who knows whether or not if she had been favored on occasion that it wouldn't have helped her make it to the top? She might still have reached the top, perhaps sooner, but maybe just not in the same way. Pondering in hindsight is probably useless. (BTW, I think Alissa Czisny has always deserved to receive high component scores).

    Re Gracie, I think at the moment that perhaps there is a general feeling among U.S. fed that Gracie's jumping ability is a great asset, plus the fact she has as yet unrealized potential in other aspects of her skating, so they may indeed give Gracie the edge over other competitors such as Zawadski, Nagasu, and Gao, for the second spot for Worlds next year. This will be determined in January, of course.

    I do agree that premature "anointing" and over-favoritism can be a hazard. I would have loved to see Ashley make the Olympic team in 2010, but right now, I can't complain. IMO, Ashley has already proven her mettle. In regard to Gracie and some others: I think with the depth of talented skaters in the U.S., it must be extremely difficult to make judgments. Perhaps the best thing to do is try to look at skaters objectively, and assess all aspects of their competitive showings, look at what they have done internationally along with how they perform at Nationals, and also look at a lot of other intangibles. Treat everyone as equally as possible, and if you are compelled to favor, try not to overly favor anyone for the wrong reasons. ;)
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2012
  17. RD

    RD Well-Known Member

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    I normally stay away from these fan fests, but I do want to take a quick moment to give her (Wagner) a nod- finally a US lady that not only wants the best, but skates like it and settles for nothing less. I felt that ever since Kwan and Cohen left, that spark has been missing in our women. Skaters just simply happy to go to the Worlds or the Olympics, happy to place top 10 instead of challenging for a medal (or gold, even) and not backing down. Even as far back as 2009, I knew Wagner was the only one of the "2008ers" who had the drive and the work ethic necessary for success, but then she lacked guidance & mental toughness among other things. I remember her stating in an interview that she wanted to win in Sochi and everyone basically laughed her aside.

    Even after she went to Nicks, although I figured she would pick up a national championship at some point, I didn't predict she'd take it as far as to be in the mix for a world championship. It's like she is finally able to turn those words into actions and that's some powerful stuff. Curious to see how her career develops. I still want at least one of our other ladies to step up to the challenge...

    ETA: I never saw "cockiness" in Wagner. Just someone who REALLY wanted to be successful, but for some reason was being held back by something. In fact, I love that she isn't afraid to show her competitiveness and openly wants to win. Nothing wrong with that. Skating seems to be still stuck in the past century in this regard
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2012
  18. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    ^^ ITA. That's it, in a nutshell.
     
  19. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

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    I am in love with Ashley Wagner. Finally, finally the US has a lady worth ubering. I'm so excited to see how she skates in the GPF. I want her to win All Of The Things.
     
  20. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to Nationals!

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  21. Proustable

    Proustable New Member

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    One thing that intrigues me is that Wagner seems to be thriving under the pressure, since it's external and not internal.

    For those counting, TEB marks her fourth consecutive long program victory (WTT, JO, SA and TEB).
     
  22. Marco

    Marco Missing Ziggy

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    I agree. But to allow for more multi-directional skating, you need to have good basics and be able to maintain good flow to begin with, otherwise you will only lose momentum whenever there is a change in direction and it does more damage to your program than good.

    This is one of the many, many things that Chan does seamlessly. Too bad nobody realizes it and just thinks he gets overmarked on SS and CH. The Japanese men sans Oda also do this well. The French and Russian men virtually don't do this at all.
     
  23. jlai

    jlai Title-less

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    That is why I hope Ashley could medal at championships but perhaps not win it. Unless US skaters see that great basics can help you win titles they will rely on jumps; flexibility and packaging

    That said I think Ashley worked on her skating some. I hope she Keeps at it
     
    Last edited: Nov 21, 2012
  24. LuckyCharm

    LuckyCharm Well-Known Member

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    That wasn't pretty, but we'll take it. On to Worlds...
     
  25. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    I am worried about her. She seems to be losing her early season consistency. That is two bad outings in the LP in a row now. That isnt going to cut it at Worlds at all. Right now I would say she is slated for a finish of around 3rd or 4th at Worlds if she skates cleanly, but if she makes mistakes she could drop down to 7th or 8th easily when one looks at how well the young Russians, Osmond, and others are now starting to skate. Hopefully she is saving her best for Worlds as I would love nothing more than to see her on the podium this year.
     
  26. centerstage01

    centerstage01 Well-Known Member

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    Now that Ashley's gotten injuries and food poisoning out of the way, she's free now to do a clean LP again. Pretty please, skate gods?
     
  27. Wyliefan

    Wyliefan Well-Known Member

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    I'm sure the food poisoning was a major factor. I thought she looked a little weak and tired, which is very un-Ashley-like. But she has plenty of time to get herself together now before Worlds.
     
  28. Spareoom

    Spareoom Well-Known Member

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    I'll give her a pass because she has been sick. She was great at the beginning but seized up at the end; that did look like stamina. Do you think she'll go to 4CC? It would perhaps be good to have another outing before Worlds just to wash the taste of that out of her mouth.
     
  29. michiruwater

    michiruwater Well-Known Member

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    I think she should absolutely skip 4CCs. Between the GPF injury and the food poisoning she needs to absolutely not push her body before Worlds.
     
  30. DimaToe

    DimaToe Well-Known Member

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    It seems my little sister is now an Ashley uber her exact quote "She fell, so what? she's my favorite, so she should always win!" :lol: