Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by Sylvia, Jan 18, 2014.
Good for C/S and Z/B! That is a cool part of the Olympic team experience and they should enjoy it.
You know, if I were an American pairs coach, I would take a copy of that interview Trankov gave and post it on a bulletin board at the rink where the skaters could see it everyday before practice as motivation.
I wouldn't start mourning the loss of these teams yet based on an interview with Trankov who sees them at a few competitions each year. We don't know how recently he had these conversations with them- was it at Skate America or in Sochi? etc. I'm sure perspectives change during the course of an Olympic season. I think for example C&S would have retired for sure if they didn't make Sochi (which looked like at least a possibility in the fall) and D&C would have retired for sure if they were going out National champions and Olympic medalists (which looked like a serious possibility in the fall).
If C&S were definitely retiring, I think they would have skipped Worlds. It really gets no better than the pinnacle they hit in Boston and Sochi- second National title and named to Olympic team at home, Olympic medals, two personal bests in the individual event. Instead it seems like they went back to training, hoped to improve their world ranking even more and were disappointed when that didn't happen. With such a good season but maybe a bit of unfinished business after a disappointing Worlds and being the clear US #1 in that top funding envelope, I'll be surprised if they don't come back next season and then take it year by year (with Boston Worlds probably serving as a significant motivator). They seem to have been really lucky in avoiding at least the major sidelining-type injuries that have plagued S/K and D/C. I'm sure reaping the Sochi rewards- White House, Stars on Ice, probably a Red Sox first pitch this spring etc.- is fun after they waited so long to get to the top of US pairs and they both seem smart enough to know that most of that will continue only if they continue together.
Actually speaking of Stars on Ice, I think they (and Jason) are skipping the May West Coast leg at the end, which I can't imagine why they would do if they weren't planning for next season. I certainly don't think Stars on Ice told any of the Olympic medalists that they couldn't do the full tour and gave other skaters like Bradley, Czisny, Kim & Brent (as much as I like them all, they're far less in the public conscious for ticket sales) etc. a full schedule. I think that might be the strongest indicator that they're not done.
With D&C, I could actually see them skating another season because of the disappointment of this year but at the same time, I'll be less surprised to see them go. The age difference makes them kind of a wildcard- she may feel she has a lot left in her. She's been around so long I forget sometimes how young she actually is and maybe she'll convince him to push forward another year or two especially given their personal relationship (not sure if they're still dating but they seem very tight regardless).
If I was betting, I'd say its 75-25, maybe even higher, we see C&S competing next season. And 40-60 on Denney Coughlin.
I'm a huge huge fan of US pairs in general but I had to laugh at Trankov's "There are no Americans." Hoping this next quad starts to change that even a little bit.
Hmmm....interesting news....I particularly hope that Denney & Coughlin do *not* retire. Despite the result at 2014 Nationals, I still think they're our #1 Pair Team, and rightfully so! They and Castelli & Schnapir blew me away when I saw them live at Skate America in 2012. However, if Simon does retire due to his knee I hope that Marissa continues on with someone like Rockne Brubaker (I always thought they would make a phenomenal on ice pair). But let's hope neither pair team has to retire prematurely.
That said, I'm just waiting for the shoe to drop, meaning I fully expect to see a top 10 US pair team break up....
Disagree on D&C being the number one US pair unless we're basing things on 2012 and a GP bronze. The reality is they were 3rd at Nats and another major injury took them out of worlds again. Marissa and Simon clearly established they are US #1 winning their second title in Boston and backed it up big time in Sochi. #2 is open to debate between Z/B, D/C and S/K.
I wonder when the hypothetical Rockne pairings will finally end. After Pyeongchang?
Lol, lauren329, but he's only 27! Seriously, there's a resaon why Rockne is considered amongst the top elite US men pairs' partners, he has everything it takes and scores extremely high when paired with the right gal and skates clean ~ Jr. World Champion, Jr. US National Champion, 2-time Sr. US National Champion, 11th & 10th at Worlds respectively with different partners ~ and it's interesting to note that the best finish for US Pairs over the past 4 years was at 2012 Worlds where both pair teams' finished in the top 10 (8th Denney/Coughlin + 10th Marley/Brubaker). And that was only his second year with Mary Beth Marley!
Hehe, I was even hoping that Aliona would've picked Rockne as her next partner. Alas, that wasn't to be.
Regards whose our #1 Pair Team, I still say Denney & Coughlin, whom both have better results at Worlds (6th, 7th, 8th) versus Castelli & Schnapir (13th & 11th; whom I'm a fan of as well).
Word is Brubaker is happily retired and has taken a Skating Director job in Chicago.
^Brubaker is retired???? Wow!
That makes sense, isn't he married now? Probably wants some stability. I would not blame him.
I wonder why there was no official announcement of Rockne retiring? Thanks for letting us know his status, jdonavan.
Because he didn't release one? Has Kwan actually officially retired by announcement?
I think some skaters just don't announce that they are done competing?
Wait, Trankov is competing next season? I'd assumed V/T would ride off into the sunset with their gold medal.
In my fantasy pairs world, I wished that Castelli and Brubaker had partnered up years and years ago. And Yankowskas/Snapir. Denney could have had Coughlin all along with no drama. All the lines would have matched up better. Alas, the pairs gods do not make the stars align in the US.
I would have really liked Yankowskas/LeDuc. The lines would have been gorgeous.
I know they tried out together, so it must not have worked out.
U.S. pair skaters, Novice or Junior at 2014 Nationals, currently listed on icepartnersearch.com (their ages as of July 1, 2014 listed in parentheses) are marked with * below:
*Elise Middleton (14) / Anthony Evans J4 - she's coached by Sand, Meno in L.A.
*Kaitlin Budd (17) / Nikita Cheban (21)* J8/JW9 - they're in Detroit area
*Madeleine Gallagher (turns 16 in April; in Detroit area) / Jonathon Horton (has retired, according to her IPS profile) N6
*Reagan King (15) / Rique Newby-Estrella* (19) N9 - both are in Michigan
*Grace Knoop (13) / Noah Chinault* (19) N11 - both are coached by Peterson in Ellenton, FL
*Sophia Dai (14) / Jeffrey Fishman - N5 in 2013/in ISP this season - she's coached by Johns, S. Pottenger in Canton, MI
Daniel Raad (26) - he's still based in Ellenton, FL
Lianna Thomas (19) - coached by Gauthier et al. in Montreal; N10 at 2014 CAN Nationals
? Caitlin Fields (18) - coached by Gauthier et al. in Montreal this past year with S. Arcieri (CAN) who is now listed on IPS; she is not on IPS
Allison Timlen (18) - in Boston for college & looking to start pairs
Nancy Xu (15) - N9 in 2012; San Jose/Colorado Springs
I actually said years ago that Castelli / Brubaker would be a dream team She is only 4-11 and he is 5-9-ish
I also thought about this, and heard the same thing; they tried out and it must not have worked out. He is 6-2 but probably would've needed a little more upper body muscle to lift Caitlin
Rockne? He's engaged to Stefania Berton. (sp)
I thought I read that they had gotten married earlier this year. I could be wrong.
Correct. They're still engaged and planning their wedding, last I heard.
Castelli/Shnapir and Zhang/Bartholomay are among the 2014 U.S. Olympians and Paralympians that will be honored at the White House this afternoon - link to watch the ceremony is posted in the TV Alerts forum: http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/sho...ympians-visit-the-White-House-today-(April-3)
From this article that recapped the festivities in D.C. last night:
There has been no official or public announcement to date as far as I know, but it appears Gretchen Donlan/Andrew Speroff are no longer skating together - they are not listed in USFS' International Selectional Pool (ISP) for 2014-15: http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/sho...14-15-season&p=4230874&viewfull=1#post4230874
Re-posting from the Ice Chips show thread:
Darn it! I was hoping they'd stay together, Now I have to find another USA pair to like best.
I really like Leng/LeDuc and hope they stay together. I have a feeling there will be quite a bit of shifting in the off-season, especially with the beginning of a new Olympic cycle.
Oh so sad about Donlan/Speroff. Boo Hoo
Pairs listed in the ISP for 2014-15 (2014 Nationals & post-Nationals results added)
Madeline Aaron & Max Settlage J1/JW5
Jessica Noelle Calalang & Zack Sidhu S11
Marissa Castelli & Simon Shnapir S1/O9/W11
Caydee Denney & John Coughlin S3
Haven Denney & Brandon Frazier S5/4C4
Cirinia Gillett & Maximiliano Fernandez N2 (JGP-eligible)
Tarah Kayne & Daniel O'Shea S6/4C2
Jessica Lee & Robert Hennings N3/Challenge Cup J1 (JGP-eligible)
DeeDee Leng & Timothy LeDuc S7
Jessica Pfund & AJ Reiss S10
Alexa Scimeca & Christopher Knierim S4/4C3
Aya Takai & Brian Johnson J7/Challenge Cup J2/JW11 (JGP-eligible)
Lindsay Weinstein & Jacob Simon N4 (JGP-eligible)
Felicia Zhang & Nathan Bartholomay S2/O12/W14
Andrew Speroff is so good. We need a small balletic pair skater that can jump. A mini-sasha.
Bummer about Donlan/Speroff--nice pair but just couldn't make any headway. Also missing from the ISP: Davis/Brubaker (have they officially split....I just assumed so); Liu/Perini, Zaitsev/Stevens. What's the scoop on them?
It's safe to assume that Davis/Brubaker have notified USFS of their split since they are not listed in the ISP and there are Sr. pairs that finished below them at Nationals that are listed in the ISP.
Liu/Perini are no longer ISU Junior age-eligible next season (which could be a reason they are not listed in the ISP) but they do qualify for the C2 team envelope. We'll have to wait and see about their status. ETA: RFOS correctly points out below that she is too young for ISU Sr. events next season.
Zaitsev/Stevens are ISU Junior age-eligible in 2014-15 IF the ISU reverts back to the current age rule for Junior male pair skaters/ice dancers and theoretically could still be added to the ISP if they are still together even though they did not compete at 2014 Nationals.
Liu/Perini aren't age eligible for any international competitions. She's too young for Seniors (born 12/31/1999, so still only 14 in July) and he's too old for Juniors (born 4/6/1993, so he'll be 21 before July). I'm not sure about Zaitsev/Stevens. Technically, she is old enough for Seniors next season (she will be 15 in less than 2 weeks) and he would be young enough for Juniors IF the age doesn't go down next season (but it is currently set to go down and he would be ineligible). I haven't been following that saga that closely, but I know I've seen discussion that seem to indicate being discussed of the decision to lower the maximum age for men in pairs and dance teams being reversed. As Sylvia said, maybe they could be added to the ISP later, assuming they are still together (is that certain?).
They just weren't going anywhere. I wish she would've found a way to vanquish her jump problems. I would choose him as a stronger skater than her, so I hope he finds someone
Darn it so this was the big shoe I was expecting to fall. Still, there were signs early on last month in those articles if one reads between the lines. *sigh*
I was hoping having been together for 5 years already they would see it through the long haul like Evora & Ladwig did, whom stuck together through thick & thin for 10 long years, finally making the Olympic Team in their 9th year together in 2010. But alas Donlan & Speroff remind me of Bazarova & Larionov in more ways than one, with Yuri dropping Vera as a partner this past week.
Here's hoping they BOTH find new partners and continue on (Gretchen's only 20 and Andrew 25), and that includes Vera (21) & Yuri (27) finding someone as well. Darn, and just when Gretchen was making soooo much headway this past year with her jumps (except at US Nationals), and just when they both finally won two gold medals on the international scene, granted B international competitions, but still a win is a win!
It's generally easier for a guy to find a partner, so I see no problem Andrew finding one, hopefully just as balletic as him. But Gretchen's the one I worry about, *if* she wants to continue that is (she just might go to school full-time). She has so much to give, I truly hope she doesn't give up, but rather finds a partner that is balletic as she is, but more importantly one that will stick with her through the long haul.
And now there's only Castelli & Schnapir and Caitlin & Hamish skating on that rink....
Ah well, onward & upward as they say, I have high hopes for the future!