U.S. Pairs 2014 - News and Updates, Part III

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by Sylvia, Jan 18, 2014.

  1. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to Nationals!

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  2. NadineWhite

    NadineWhite Well-Known Member

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    ITA!:hat1: She's only 18 yrs. old and joins Gretchen Donlan (4'11") & Lindsay Davis (4'11") in the under 5-feet tall group, being the smallest of them all standing just shy of 4'10" tall! http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mary_Beth_Marley

    Allright!:kickass: I betcha a lot of guys are lined up to try out with her ~ she's tiny at only 4'10" tall and can JUMP! Here's hoping she finds the perfect partner to complement each other. :)
     
  3. NadineWhite

    NadineWhite Well-Known Member

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    PS: I find Matthew Blackmer fascinating, especially after reading that he speaks Russian fluently, and he's already tried out with Gretchen (4'11") & Mary Beth (4'10"), which tells me that he's looking for a tiny petite female to complement his 5'10" frame (btw IN lists his height as 5'10" whereas wikipedia lists it as 5'11"). Unfortunately, that also tells me that the 7" height differential between him and his former partner, Britney Simpson (5'3"), was one of the causes of their break-up. They were so fabulous together too. *sigh*

    http://www.goldenskate.com/2012/03/simpson-and-blackmer-encouraged-by-early-success/
     
  4. apatinar

    apatinar Active Member

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    so if Mary Beth wants to continue skating, what happened with the partnership between her and Rockne?
     
  5. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to Nationals!

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  6. sammyf

    sammyf Well-Known Member

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    I noticed Leng/LeDuc are missing from the ISP while skaters who placed lower at Nationals are there. Does that mean they split?
     
  7. shan

    shan Well-Known Member

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    :wuzrobbed
     
  8. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to Nationals!

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  9. BittyBug

    BittyBug Kiteless

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    Nooooooooo! :fragile:
     
  10. ioana

    ioana Well-Known Member

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    :fragile: about Leng/LeDuc. This was my favorite SP by a US pair in a long, long time. Edges and flow in that last ftwk sequence :swoon:.
     
  11. semogal

    semogal Well-Known Member

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    Well that made me say some very not nice words. I loved them at Nationals. The US pairs curse continues
     
  12. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    So, will we be seeing Castelli/LeDuc? If Simon retires (not sure he has yet). Does marissa get a GP returning split skater spot?
     
  13. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't be surprised!
     
  14. lauren329

    lauren329 Active Member

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    I really think people are counting chickens way before they hatch here talking about Marissa getting a split partner GP. Is this entirely based off a Google translate of an interview with Trankov? LeDuc has given no indication he's looking for a partner or continuing at least publicly. C/S have given absolutely no indication they're not continuing together and are presently touring together. They're on the ISP list, which granted could change but I suppose that means at least as of now USFS has not been informed of anything. I have no insider knowledge whatsoever but I'll be surprised if they don't try for their hometown Worlds in 2016.

    Leng and LeDuc had potential. It's too bad. They'll always have that awesome SP in Boston. It was a cool surprise moment and a gorgeous program. I'm not sure where they were hoping to place when 3 spots on the 4 spot podium were more or less set with D/C, C/S and S/K but I thought they made a pretty impressive splash with that SP. The drop after the short had to be disappointing but I thought their 7th in a competitive pairs event was solid for a second year team.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2014
  15. leapfrogonice

    leapfrogonice Active Member

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    In my opinion, the supposed "curse" with US pairs starts with the entire "culture" of the sport in the US. It's the notion that skaters who cannot or do not succeed as singles skaters, "resort" to pairs. This is also a prevailing sentiment in dance. I suspect this is especially true in countries where singles is disproportionately popular. (e.g., Japan). This leads US pairs to be very often at a disadvantage in terms of the level of commitment that gets made, and it is disheartening to see.

    I also think Rockne Brubaker has so very much to be proud of with his career. But still, I am disappointed for HIM that he was not able to enjoy a solid continuous partnership that would have presented him with a unique opportunity to really gauge how far he could have gone at the World level. I realize a lot of factors were involved with his various partnership break-ups, so it is not to say he is blameless or anything. It's just a shame that his very strong partnering skills were never truly matched, perhaps other than Keauna during the early years of their career together.
     
  16. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    Leng was the 2009 U.S. Junior ladies champion and then took almost three years off from skating entirely, I believe, before teaming with LeDuc.

    From what I understand L/L got along well, but after their disappointing Nationals LP they really postponed making a decision about whether or not to continue together. It appears now they have decided to split. I have heard that LeDuc is interested in continuing, but of course it will depend on whether or not he can find a partner at his level.
     
  17. yfbg722

    yfbg722 Active Member

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    I thought Leng did very well for having been off 3 years and picking up a new discipline. It's a shame if she's not continuing.
     
  18. The Observer

    The Observer New Member

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    Yes, the U.S. has struggled in pairs for a long time. Particularly in recent years they just haven't had the ability to maintain an ongoing series of competitive pairs that can win at the World level. It's a big contrast with the pairs legacy in Canada, Russia & Europe (and now China).

    The only U.S. pair to have made an impact over the past decade was Ina & Zimmerman (their 2002 World bronze is the last time a U.S. pair has medalled).

    I&Z were a solid pair, but they had the disadvantage of competing in the Sale/Pelletier vs. B&S era, with Shen & Zhao to contend with as well.
     
  19. lauren329

    lauren329 Active Member

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    The above is why I actually like the team medal at the Olympics as somewhat of an incentive for US pairs. Worlds podiums may seem like a long shot but stick together and you could end up with an Olympic medal.
     
  20. stjeaskategym

    stjeaskategym Well-Known Member

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    That's too bad about Leng/LeDuc. They had a couple nice SPs this year, but every LP they competed in their short partnership was pretty disastrous (such as their Senior B this past season that had 4 falls, lift problems, & other sizable issues). Of course, some of that probably could be attributed to the fact that they were only a second year pair without much experience. They did have ability and may have gotten better and better with time and patience, but if they've split already, then something must not have felt right. You never know if a singles skater will truly take a liking to pairs and really develop a knack for it. In the US, it seems that sometimes skaters switch to pairs expecting it to be automatically easier than singles and smooth sailing just because they can land a SBS jump. But pairs is just as hard as singles, and in some ways harder, and it takes just as much commitment, patience, and persistence.
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2014
  21. clairecloutier

    clairecloutier Well-Known Member

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    Sorry to hear that Leng/LeDuc split. They really seemed to have a lot of potential. I wonder went into the decision. Is Leng retiring from skating, looking for a new partner, or going back to singles?

    So, out of our top 10 U.S. pairs at Nationals, three pairs have already split: Leng/LeDuc, Donlan/Speroff, Davis/Brubaker. :-( In the case of D/B, it's not such a loss, but the other two teams still had upside in my opinion, especially L/L.

    Well, if LeDuc wants to continue (and I hope he does), what are his options right now in terms of U.S. pairs girls? Mary Beth Marley is definitely available. Others who might be: Gretchen Donlan, Lindsay Davis, Britney Simpson? And, depending on what she & Simon decide, maybe Marissa Castelli?
     
  22. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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    I am not expecting it to happen. I am wondering if, assuming rumors Simon wants to retire are true, DOES Marissa qualify for that?
     
  23. haribobo

    haribobo Well-Known Member

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    Wait, so Mary Beth is available now? Did we ever figure out why she split from Rockne?
     
  24. Skittl1321

    Skittl1321 Well-Known Member

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  25. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to Nationals!

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    Placing 7-12 at Worlds has been the criterion for "returning split couple" designation, so yes.

    ETA:
    I liked Leng/LeDuc's skating a lot and hope they will both continue in pairs, if possible.

    ETA link to an article excerpt about how Leng went into pairs that I posted early in this thread: http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/sho...tes-Part-III&p=4124842&viewfull=1#post4124842
     
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2014
  26. kiss-n-cry

    kiss-n-cry Team Brown

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    First, my favorite pair team (Donlan/Speroff) split, and now it looks like my favorite up-and-comers (Leng/LeDuc) have also split. In Boston, I couldn't help but notice Timothy's line and style. I think he is fantastic, but does look slight for a pairs skater. I would be curious to see a Donlan/Leduc pairing, even though I am crushed that Speroff has moved on. (I understand it, but it still doesn't ease the blow)
     
  27. Rob

    Rob Beach Bum

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    That was my favorite program of the whole competition. Sigh.

    Poor Rockne thought I do understand why Mary Beth needed to step away.
     
  28. Sylvia

    Sylvia On to Nationals!

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    A positive local article: Newtown Township [PA] supervisors honor Olympic skater Bartholomay
    Excerpt from end:
     
  29. lauren329

    lauren329 Active Member

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    Good for them- he sounds very realistic about their long-term goals. I think this team will have continued success at least domestically by continuing to perform well under pressure. They don't seem affected by the Nationals nerves that affect so many skaters. Bets on what musical they skate to next year?
     
  30. The Observer

    The Observer New Member

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    True, because the added complication of pairs (& dance) is that you not only have to develop strong technical ability, but the ability to work in a partnership with another person over many years.

    As we're seeing with all of the partnerships that split up each season, if you don't have strong interpersonal skills or the ability to stand by your partner in difficult times, you aren't going to make it as a team. That's a complication that single skaters don't have to deal with.