Wow this thread is very fun and enjoyable.
I think nothing would make the USFSA happier than having a shiny bright new skater on the top. A new Tara or Sasha would pump life back into skating. Someone who came close to Michelle would be a dream come true.
Rachael never thrilled me, her bodyline, the way she seemed to skate heavy on her skates, she never appeared light and flowing. Her skating was a better version of Emily Hughes' clonky skating.
Rachael's consistency with the jumps is what gave the USFSA hope but now who knows. She is not all that great of a skater, if this were 1997-98 or 2000 - 2004 Rachael would be landing 5th or 6th.
If only i didn't have to see his face when reading those articles! Looks like a perv! Ew!
No, I want Rachael to come back well and with her jump arsenal in tact. Though the performances at World were subpar there were some beautiful moments.
I think she did a much improved spiral----back glide into leg lift. And the position of her free leg in the layback is first rate and she did get a level 4 for her footwork which doesn't happen often. I think Rachael will want to try to redeem herself.
Even before this event, she has been cruelly crticized. You would think she was the worst skater in the world, but the fact is she is still in the top ten of the world according to isu rankings.
1981- Everyone was talking about Biellmann, Zayak, Wainmann, and Witt at this point. 2 of those wouldnt even make it to Sarajevo, one would be the 3rd U.S lady by then, and of course one would be champion. However who would have ever guessed Sumners would be the top U.S lady and the gold medal favorite going into the 84 Games. Few had ever heard of her in 81, wasnt she something like #5 in the U.S that year.
1985- 1988 was going to be the Chin coronation. She never even made it to Calgary. Witt was probably going to retire after 86, she ended up repeating as Olympic Champion.
1989- You would have thought Ito would stroll to the 92 Olympic Gold without figures. And Trenary would be a big factor. And the idea of Kerrigan being a medalist at the 92 Games would been laughable.
1995- Who would have picked Tara to win the 98 Games when she couldnt even win Junior Nationals in 95 and came 5th at Juniors Worlds behind another 13 year old (who won bronze) in 96.
2003- Imagine saying Arakawa would be the 2006 Olympic Champ. This would be the funniest joke of all had anyone said that.
Did anyone see Rachael's skate at Skate for Hope?
So yes, Flatt has failed twice (2010, 2011).
Still though, I don't want to get deep into this blame game stuff. Honestly, you can point fingers at any/all of the 6 skaters who have been on World teams since 2008: Meissner, Liang, Wagner, Flatt, Nagasu, Czisny. Speaking in GENERAL terms, it's really not one skater's fault in particular...it's more the sub-par state of American ladies. Hopefully there are better days ahead.
The only thing that sealed the deal for Flatt's inevitable title in 2010 was her 5th place finish at Worlds in 2009 and no other Olympic hopeful coming close to that at that point. Ultimately the wrong bet was made because the international judges did like Nagasu a whole lot better than they did Flatt and Nagasu actually delivered at the Olympics (well, Flatt did too but no one really cared).
What's the point of sending Flatt if she can't deliver? She is named the rock by her own coach to give her a selling point. It's her only selling point. If she had skated cleanly and placed as high as she could and US still didn't have a 3rd spot back, then it would have been Nagasu's problem.
Nagasu was picked for 2010 not because she was a medal hopeful (she hasn't competed in any senior international championship yet), but because she was a medal potential for the future and needed the experience. She was known to be inconsistent. I don't think anyone was placing bets on her.
On the bright side, she is Jr World Champion, US Champion, has been to 3 Worlds and to 1 Olympics. That's pretty impressive given her lack of talent. She is now going to college. Time to start a new phrase of her life - especially when there's really no reason for her to look back.
She can come back all she wants, but I doubt we will see a PCS over 7 ever again even at Nationals and all that ugly flutz/lip thing, cheated combinations and poor spins will be penalised big time.
----(getting general here)--------
The hate in this thread is mind boggling. This is a young woman trying be the best she can at a sport she (presumably) loves. Why hate on her for it? I can absolutely understand being upset about breaking the rule. However some of the stuff in here is just plain spiteful.