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  1. #1
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    Ice Dancers Chitwood/Hanretty Retire From Competitive Skating

    Team GB Ice Dancers Christina Chitwood and Mark Hanretty have announced their retirement from competitive skating.

    The news was displayed on their website: http://chitwood-hanretty.ice-dance.c...al-6.5.10.html and on their official Facebook page.

    I am sad that we will no longer be seeing them in competition but wish them all the best for the future.

  2. #2
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    It's a shame although after everything they have been through, I can understand that decision. Good luck in their professional careers.

    (P.S. the usual suspects, please don't turn it into another NISA IS EVIL thread which is gonna get it closed )

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    Aw, that's a shame, I enjoyed them.

    I hope they have a great professional career.

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    Unhappy

    Very sad to hear that, had been very much looking forward to another battle between them and Penny&Nick in particular.

    However they have achieved a lot, been to Europeans, Worlds. Its good to hear that they are retiring together and will continue to perform professionally so we'll no doubt still be seeing them in the skating world.

    They'll be missed in the competitive world though :-(

  5. #5
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    Such a shame! What a sad loss to Team GB, but good luck to them both in all that they do.

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    As a figure skating fan, that is bad and sad news.

    I wish them the best in whatever they do next.
    "'Is this new BMW-designed sled the ultimate sledding machine for Langdon and Holcomb?' Leigh Diffey asked before the pair cruised to victory. I don’t know, but I know that sled is the ultimate Olympic Games product placement.." -- Jen Chaney

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    Sad news..... I really like this team. They look good in Torino/ Good luck to them!

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    I'm sorry to hear about this decision. Chitwood/Hanretty were the most promising up-and-coming team from the UK IMO. Especially Hanretty showed lots of natural talent. He somewhat overshadowed Chitwood with his softer movements and ease on the ice, but she was making rapid progress and one could see how much she loved ice dance. It is a pity they couldn't fulfil their potential.

    Hanretty writes in his blog:

    Some of you may be upset that I shall no longer be chasing my goals of Olympic Gold, however I want you to realise that in actual fact, I feel a sense of enlightenment and relief. The realisation that I no longer feel at the whim of other people is a blessing. I have realised that happiness is not sought in the acquisition of medals, and indeed many of the champions I have met still seem lacking in contentment.
    I have only looked into the British skating threads a few times so I am not aware of the reasons for the . However, even another UK team has been unfairly preferred to them on some occasions, I can't help wishing they had looked at the bigger picture and persevered. They have already competed at the Euros and the Worlds as well as at several other international competitions with respectable results. AFAIK C/H have been skating together for only four years and neither had been ice dancers for more than a couple of years before that. So their achievements so far are remarkable.

    While Mark's frustration with the politicking is understandable, life is unfair for everyone in every profession where competition is involved. You are always discriminated against if you don't have the right people's support, the right background, the right nationality, the right gender, the right looks, enough money, enough name recognition, enough charisma and so on and so forth. You are always at the whim of other people to a certain extent - and in ice dance this is only to a certain extent as well. Those who persevere give themselves a chance. The others will never know what might have been.

    Of course some skaters may prefer skating in shows to competition. That is perfectly understandable - an audience in which half of the arena doesn't hope you'll fall is not too bad either!

    Good luck Christina and Mark!

  9. #9
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    It's so sad to see two people who have worked so hard and committed themselves to a sport retire before they have reached their competitive pinnacle. Hopefully there are other couples who come up behind them and learn from them and can put as much enthusiasm and commitment into their skating journey! It appears that the road to success in UK Ice Dance is a rocky one but hopefully we have enough skaters willing to persever through it.

    Good luck to Christina and Mark. Please, please just continue to give us enjoyment by continuing to skate professionly!

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asli View Post
    Whole post
    Excellent points. I wish they had persevered too, having come so far, but I can understand the decision to call it a day.

    If your own country is going to thwart your efforts to succeed or to represent the country, then what is the point in dedicating the required amount of time, effort and money in pursuing your goals?

    It's true that there is unfairness in many things, but in most walks of life there is at least some way to get justice without having to appeal to the courts all the time. I admired Elliot Hilton for forcing the decision makers to allow him to go to Worlds in LA, while I admired Chrissy and Mark for staying out of the politics in a dignified way.

    IMO I think that C&H hoped that lessons would be learned and that they would be treated with more respect for behaving in a respectful way. Clearly Mark feels that nothing has changed for the better.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Timbuktu View Post
    Excellent points. I wish they had persevered too, having come so far, but I can understand the decision to call it a day.

    If your own country is going to thwart your efforts to succeed or to represent the country, then what is the point in dedicating the required amount of time, effort and money in pursuing your goals?

    It's true that there is unfairness in many things, but in most walks of life there is at least some way to get justice without having to appeal to the courts all the time. I admired Elliot Hilton for forcing the decision makers to allow him to go to Worlds in LA, while I admired Chrissy and Mark for staying out of the politics in a dignified way.

    IMO I think that C&H hoped that lessons would be learned and that they would be treated with more respect for behaving in a respectful way. Clearly Mark feels that nothing has changed for the better.
    Very good points.....I do believe that British skating will suffer as a result of C and M turning professional. Heaven knows when the powers that be will realise the effects this will have on our results in the years to come. I just wish that they had been fairer to our 2nd and 3rd Senior dance couples and looked after them better.

    Good Luck to Mark and Chrissy for the future. An elegant and dignified couple who have been very good ambassadors for Great Britain, you will be greatly missed.

  12. #12
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    This is a real shame. I thought they showed alot of potential and was looking forward to seeing them battle it out with some of the other "up and comers" as I hoped that the competition would be a great motivator for all the teams.

    All the best to them in their future endeavours.

    Asli - Great Post. So very true.

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    I look at it from a different viewpoint:

    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. *…

    If C/H don't see a change in their environment, why should they throw good money and effort after bad? Because something might be different in the future?

    Sure there's unfairness in most job or competitive environments, but I commend them for putting their effort into a place where they have more chance to control their lives.
    "'Is this new BMW-designed sled the ultimate sledding machine for Langdon and Holcomb?' Leigh Diffey asked before the pair cruised to victory. I don’t know, but I know that sled is the ultimate Olympic Games product placement.." -- Jen Chaney

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    If C/H don't see a change in their environment, why should they throw good money and effort after bad? Because something might be different in the future?
    They were sent to the 2010 Worlds, so I thought that showed some change and would be motivating.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Asli View Post
    They were sent to the 2010 Worlds, so I thought that showed some change and would be motivating.
    Me too. They had done fairly well at a couple of B Internationals too and I was (probably somewhat wishfully) hoping they might sneak a GP invite. I know they weren't guaranteed one but I had my fingers crossed that our 2nd and 3rd couples would both get a shot.

    I get what you say Kwanfan - I think everyone knows their limits and when enough is enough (whether disappointment, sacrifice, expense). If C/H reached that point then I wish them all the best in whatever they do next.
    Last edited by mella; 06-07-2010 at 09:01 PM.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    I look at it from a different viewpoint:

    Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. *…

    If C/H don't see a change in their environment, why should they throw good money and effort after bad? Because something might be different in the future?

    Sure there's unfairness in most job or competitive environments, but I commend them for putting their effort into a place where they have more chance to control their lives.
    The simple answer to your question about why carry on when the environment is not in your favour, is that there are some people that love the sport enough to stand up to those that have been accused of corrupting the system.

    There are some people that are aware of the fact that the Kerrs nearly gave up skating after years of being held back before 2003, but look how many fans they have around the world now.

    We have all seen that some posters here are not happy with the discussions around the issues that have gone on behind the scenes, but like it or not, the people that have truly stood up for this sport have had to put up with a lot more crap than the readers here have had to endure.

    I for one sympathise with everyone that wants this sport to be fairer, but have the most respect for the people that have gotten their hands dirty and lobbied to make things better.

    C&M retiring from competitive skating is a direct symptom of the problems that have been discussed in this forum. An occasional unfair result is bad enough, but consistent poor treatment over multiple years is demoralising.

    How can more up and coming couples be prevented from having to go through the same problems? Before we lose yet more talent?

    I would seriously like constructive comments from anyone interested enough to put their mind to the problem. I hate all the slanging matches that have gone on as much as the next person, but I just don't think that letting lunatics taking over the asylum is a valid solution.

  17. #17
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    Quote:
    Some of you may be upset that I shall no longer be chasing my goals of Olympic Gold, however I want you to realise that in actual fact, I feel a sense of enlightenment and relief. The realisation that I no longer feel at the whim of other people is a blessing. I have realised that happiness is not sought in the acquisition of medals, and indeed many of the champions I have met still seem lacking in contentment.


    It is a shame for British skating fans that Mark and Chrissy won't be competing any more, but I applaud him for coming to this realisation at a young age. I spent years chasing the next grade in skating or the next competition win in ballroom as if life wouldn't be worth living if I didn't get it. I will never forget the relief I felt when my partner and I didn't make the cut in a ballroom competition and we realised that we no longer actually cared. We have enjoyed both activities and our lives so much more since we weren't at the mercy of a load of judges. You can go so far in a sport and then you have to ask yourself whether you really want what you are chasing that badly.

    I wish both Mark and Chrissy much happiness in their lives. They have been wonderful competitors and ambassadors for the sport.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanceDanceDance View Post

    I would seriously like constructive comments from anyone interested enough to put their mind to the problem. I hate all the slanging matches that have gone on as much as the next person, but I just don't think that letting lunatics taking over the asylum is a valid solution.
    Let's not eh? And just keep the thread on topic.

    Good luck to Chrissy and Mark in whatever path their lives now take.
    Dont Hate! Gyrate!

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Asli View Post
    They were sent to the 2010 Worlds, so I thought that showed some change and would be motivating.
    If they felt that this was a true sign of support, perhaps. From Hanretty's statement, I get the message that they don't, and I'm really glad they are happy with their decision to not play and are going forward with their lives.
    "'Is this new BMW-designed sled the ultimate sledding machine for Langdon and Holcomb?' Leigh Diffey asked before the pair cruised to victory. I don’t know, but I know that sled is the ultimate Olympic Games product placement.." -- Jen Chaney

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    If they felt that this was a true sign of support, perhaps. From Hanretty's statement, I get the message that they don't, and I'm really glad they are happy with their decision to not play and are going forward with their lives.
    You may not know that C&H were only told that they were definitely going to Turin a week or two before they went out there from what I understand. How are athletes supposed to make sure their physical and mental training is at the top of their game with that much notice? C&B knew at or shortly after the british championships that they were doing europeans and olympics, so it wasn't fair to keep C&H on tenterhooks all that time.

    Quote Originally Posted by SHARPIE View Post
    Let's not eh? And just keep the thread on topic.

    Good luck to Chrissy and Mark in whatever path their lives now take.
    Dancedancedance's comment WAS on topic. See the quote from Mark's part of the blog:

    The world of competitive skating has shown me a great deal of politicking, corruption, bitterness and unhealthy competition. These factors make it difficult for me to find the inspiration or desire to continue pursuit in that field.
    You and the other moderators have the power to close threads if they get out of hand, but why wouldn't you want healthy discussion about how to make things better with british skating? Isn't that one of the things that makes this forum so great?

    There were nasty comments last year, and I got drawn into it more than I would have liked, but there seemed to be much nastier comments from the other side of the debate IMHO.

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