US Pairs 2013 News and Updates Part II

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by ~tapdancer~, Mar 10, 2013.

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  1. shan

    shan Well-Known Member

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    I'm sad for Simpson/Blackmer, but I'm glad that they are both planning to continue.
  2. ~tapdancer~

    ~tapdancer~ Well-Known Member

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    Simpson/Blackmer...somehow I knew this was coming. :(

    I'm really sad for this, will always enjoy their Titanic program, it was lovely. Best wishes for both of them in their future!
  3. NadineWhite

    NadineWhite Well-Known Member

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    What sad news to read after the Thanksgiving weekend. :(

    Seriously, I've always said they were one of my favorite jr. pair teams, tied with Madeline Aaron & Max Settlage, and was so looking forward to them debuting as Seniors this year. Their "Titanic" program was truly iconic, their masterpiece, what they'll be known for.

    She in particular really draws the eye with her passion and musicality. Reminiscent of Sasha Cohen in a way, but taller and longer limbed. Therein lies her downfall in pairs skating though. :( Methinks this is the real reason why neither of her partnerships lasted more than 3 yrs. And makes me wonder if she has grown even taller than 5'3"? :confused: After all she is 17 yrs. old now and may have grown a bit more...

    Here's hoping Britney does not have to look outside the USA for a partner, the same way Caitlin Yankowskas had to do, whom after searching for a couple of years finally found her 6-foot tall+ prince in Great Britain. :)

    Take heart young Britney, and look to pair couples like Vanessa James (5'6")/Morgan Cipres(6') and Sui(4'11")/Han(5'7").
  4. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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  5. NadineWhite

    NadineWhite Well-Known Member

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    Wow, thanks for posting that, Sylvia, didn't know what additional challenges Chris Knierim had to overcome until I read that article. Kudos to him for holding it together after the debacle of his passport being in his coach's possession (whom flew home to the US while S&K did the gala), and thank goodness he was able to stay with Evan Bates for a few extra days in China (to save on cost) while waiting for his passport to arrive (thumbs up for his parents coming through & mailing it to him, though I think his coach should have, jmho). All that (and on his birthday no less :eek:) and they were still able to do good in Russia; better than they did in China. :cool:

    ps: the things these skaters go through is really an eye opener, and makes me appreciate them even more! :hat1:
  6. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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    Here's a very good local article on Alexandria (Alex) Shaughnessy, who has been skating for 5 years with Jimmy Morgan -- they will make their senior national debut in Boston: http://duxbury.m.wickedlocal.com/wkdDuxbury/db_103475/contentdetail.htm?contentguid=fbMLVytD
    Excerpts:
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2013
  7. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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    Boston Globe article focused on Gretchen Donlan/Andrew Speroff: http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/re...er-olympics/5ccnuE9OTx922lpZ0C3UZM/story.html
    Excerpt:
  8. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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  9. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

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    Wow. Proud of them for achieving a PB at RC in spite of all the setbacks. I'm relieved to hear there is nothing physically wrong with Chris
  10. shan

    shan Well-Known Member

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  11. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    The 3 Boston pair teams are the class of the field. So stylish.
  12. leapfrogonice

    leapfrogonice Active Member

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    The article touches on a key point which will be interesting to see. How each athlete will respond to both the opportunity and additional "pressure" of skating before a hometown crowd. The support for all of the skaters at a US Nationals will be awesome I'm sure, but how skaters perceive the environment is still a distinct issue.

    Wishing them all moments which make for positive memories to last a lifetime.
  13. Jayar

    Jayar Well-Known Member

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    It's interesting to note:

    2005 US Figure skating championships:
    1. Orscher/Lucash
    2. Inoue/Baldwin
    3. Hinzman/Parchem

    2006 US Figure skating championships:
    1. Inoue/Baldwin
    2. Hinzman/Parchem
    3. Orscher/Lucash

    2009 US Figure skating championships:
    1. McLaughlin/Brubaker
    2. Denney/Barrett
    3. Inoue/Baldwin
    4. Evora/Ladwig

    2010 US Figure skating championships
    1. Denney/Barrett
    2. Evora/Ladwig
    3. Inoue/Baldwin

    Based on this, Scimeca and Knierim have a great shot to go to the Games, as do Zhang/Bartholomay.
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2013
  14. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    Yeah, I thought about this pattern of the reigning champs not making the Oly team during the GP. I'm very concerned, as I believe Simon hasn't really landed a sbs jump all season. Fingers crossed.

    Re: the second spot-- I would love to see a Evora/Ladwig or Hinzman/Parchem situation with Donlan/Speroff.
  15. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

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    ^The race for Sochi is really among Denney/Coughlin, Scimeca/Knierim, and Castelli/Shnapir. D/C look to be the favorites just because they are so consistent. S/K and C/S will probably be in a close fight for #2. If you were to press me for my opinion, I would bet on S/K just because despite the injury over the Summer and the weird setbacks this Fall, they have been building momentum and already got a personal best in November at Rostelecom, whereas C/S have regressed on the SBS jumps and while you can tell they have worked hard on PCS, their programs this season are too cluttered with mistakes.

    In my fantasy, C/S and S/K skate clean and represent the US at Sochi. Both have better PCS / are more promising in the long term than D/C (even if I respect D/C's improvements).

    I don't see D/S making the Sochi team.
  16. reese

    reese Well-Known Member

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    Yes, D/S is extremely unlikely. A 4CC spot is more realistic. But 2 Olympic cycles in a row a very unexpected team has stolen the second spot. Obviously S/K and C/S are the favorites for the second spot (I see D/C as a lock for gold), but both have had dreadful seasons. Anything could happen.
  17. Debbie S

    Debbie S Well-Known Member

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    I think you mean McLaughlin? ;)

    I would love to see C/S and S/K on the Oly team. I hope S/K can rebound from their rough GP season.
    shan and (deleted member) like this.
  18. Jayar

    Jayar Well-Known Member

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    LOL. Miller, McLaughlin, Marley... one of them. Oops! And fixed.
  19. hippychick

    hippychick New Member

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    My hope is that the Olympic team is comprised of the two teams that skate the best at US Nationals. I hope the judging is fair and unbiased and it comes down to which teams skate the best over the sp and lp.
  20. clairecloutier

    clairecloutier Active Member

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    I agree with your analysis, Olympic. I too am hoping for a team of Castelli/Shnapir and Scimeca/Knierim, but expecting a team of Denney/Coughlin and either S/K or C/S. I am not sure who has the inside track between S/K and C/S. Normally I would say S/K, as they have typically been more consistent and beat C/S at Worlds. However, between Chris's injury and their travel problems, I might give the edge to C/S, despite C/S's numerous mistakes this year. Another factor is I do think Marissa/Simon's programs are much better than Alexa/Chris's. I feel like Marissa/Simon's short & long programs are too similar to each other in musical genre/costume. Nonetheless, at least the programs are interesting, unlike the princessy Muzak things Alexa/Chris are doing. Also, although Alexa/Chris are typically more solid with the elements, I think Marissa/Simon have much better speed on the ice.

    But, as much as Castelli/Shnapir and Scimeca/Knierim are the frontrunners for that second spot, I still think they're going to need to bring it and skate strongly at Nationals. Because other teams like Donlan/Speroff, Zhang/Bartholomay, Denney/Frazier, and maybe Kayne/O'Shea are nipping at their heels. I don't think either C/S or S/K will be held up if they bomb the elements. So I do think there is potential for one of those other pairs to make the team. It's unlikely, but not out of the question IMO.
  21. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

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    Of the teams below S/K and C/S, I think Denney/Frazier are the best right now and could make the final group. Beyond that, I would have to pick Donlan/Speroff because they've beaten Kayne/O'Shea but the latter pair is quite ambitious and exhibits a lot of raw talent. Only a miracle would put Davis/Brubaker in contention. Zhang/Bartholomay looked good over the summer but have only had one good skate (SA LP) this year, but they surprised last year
  22. johndockley92

    johndockley92 New Member

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    I think that barring a terrible performance, the top 3 contenders should remain in the top 3, especially with bias. That being said, I wouldn't be that surprised if Kayne/ O'Shea pull off some sort of upset and move into even as high as 3rd place. In all reality, Kayne/ O'Shea, Denney/ Frazier, Donlan/ Speroff, & Zhang/ Bartholomay are ALL in the running for 4th place. Hopefully they all make good showings; nothing is more exciting than a tight race at the top!
  23. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

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    I think either C/S or S/K would have to bomb and K/O would have to skate great for K/O to creep up to a bronze medal. But, things like that are always possible and unpredictable. Z/B could make a run for the podium as well. Last year, they were subpar but came back strong by Nationals. However, for D/B, it's more than low scores: It's not 'clicking' for whatever reason and they need to sort that out.

    I also think the Pairs competition at Nationals will be more interesting than it has been for years. I forgot to mention a favorite team of mine - Leng/LeDuc. They were great in the PS at Coupe de Nice but faltered in the LP. They have the 6th highest SP score among all US pairs and it stands to reason they could be in the penultimate group at Nationals going into the LP
  24. clairecloutier

    clairecloutier Active Member

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    I agree, I can't wait for the pairs event at Nationals. I do think it will be much better than in recent seasons, there just is a lot more depth now. And I haven't forgotten about Leng/LeDuc, either. So far I've only seen them once, at the preseason pairs event this summer (Indy Classic?--can't remember the name). I was impressed, they seemed like a very solid team, with a good balance of skills. Looking forward to seeing more of them.
  25. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

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    Anyone know how many Pairs teams will be at Nationals? Last year it was a bit embarrassing that there were only 10 teams competing. I would imagine with much more depth this year it should be more like 14-15.
  26. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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    12 Senior pairs; 10 competed internationally this fall.
  27. hippychick

    hippychick New Member

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    I hope that C/S or S/K have to skate their best to gain an olympic spot and it is not just handed to them on reputation. There are several teams (mentioned above) who could give them a run for their money if they don't skate their best.

    I am personally excited to see how Donlan and Speroff skate at Nationals. They have made some significant improvements in their jumping and their consistency on their throws seems to be returning. They already had spectacular lifts and a good triple twist. Hopefully they can continue to build upon this season in the coming years. I think they along with Kayne and Oshea, Zhang and Bartholomay and Denney and Frazier have an outside shot at unseating either C/S or S/K if they don't skate their best. Should be an exciting Nationals.
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2013
  28. B.Cooper

    B.Cooper Active Member

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    With only two slots in Sochi, don't see the less experienced pair teams upsetting the apple cart. Still see D/C going and one of C/S or S/K. D/S, D/F and others mentioned above will have to wait another 4 yr cycle.
  29. A.H.Black

    A.H.Black Well-Known Member

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    Last time nationals was in Boston there were only 7 senior dance teams. Results are here if you are interested - http://www.usfigureskating.org/event_related_details.asp?ri=content/events/200001/uschamps/senior/freedance.htm Back to pairs - disciplines have their ups and downs. Pairs is definitely in the rebuilding process.
  30. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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  31. clairecloutier

    clairecloutier Active Member

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    A new thread on GoldenSkate is speculating that Mary Beth Marley and Matthew Blackmer may be doing a tryout soon. Note, it's purely speculation at this point, based on some tweets from Mary Beth and Matt (found thanks to Mrs. P). But I know fans/supporters of Mary Beth will be excited about this possible news, if true. I'm excited, anyhow. I have been so hoping for Mary Beth to find a new partner and continue her career, if health allows.

    According to Wikipedia, Matt is 5'11" and 22. Mary Beth is 4'10" and 18. I have yet to see Matt skate, so I know nothing about his style and how it might mesh with Mary Beth's.
  32. shan

    shan Well-Known Member

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    Very interesting blog. (((Danny's costume))) I love the picture that accompanies the journal entry. :lol:

    Great news! I hope it's true. :D
  33. leigh466

    leigh466 Active Member

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    When did Blackmer and Simpson split up?
  34. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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  35. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    There are videos on YouTube of Britney and Matthew -- the one of them in their 2013 fs at junior worlds shows some of the difficulties they were having in terms of being a bit too close in size to be effectively competitive in the current pairs scene 're technical demands. They have had some lovely skates in prior seasons that I've enjoyed. It's sad to see their disappointment in the kiss 'n cry. I hope they both will be able to find suitable partners and continue their competitive careers.

    A lovely Canadian team that recently split I believe due to the difficulties of similar height are Margaret Purdy and Michael Marinaro. They were so musical and very stylish together. It's too bad that pairs who are otherwise well-matched have to break up for size reasons.

    Anyway, I think Mary Beth might be a great match for Matthew style, size and age-wise. Fingers crossed for them -- the possibilities make me excited since I've missed seeing Mary Beth on the ice.
  36. lavenderblue

    lavenderblue Active Member

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    They did? They're listed on the start order for Canadians which just came out today.
  37. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    I guess what I heard was just a rumor then. I'm glad if they're still together.
  38. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

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    ^I remember reading lots of praise on FSU for Simpson / Blackmer and so I watched them skate one day. I was not that impressed just for the reason cited above; she looked to big for him. Purdy / Marinaro are in the same boat, but it's certainly their decision to stay together and give it a try. Judges seem to like them
  39. Otterpop

    Otterpop New Member

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    Or we could say ,'he is too small for her....' or even better, ' they are too close in size.'

    Words are powerful beasties. We should probably tread carefully. Food for thought.
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  40. clairecloutier

    clairecloutier Active Member

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    Agreed. "They are too close in size." That's the way to go.
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