Dick Button Historical Quote of the Month: "Good grief, what have we wrought on the world? Oh my, oh my, OH MY!" (commenting on Tara Lipinsky's free skate, at the 1997 U.S. Nationals)
How many comp did Yuka won skating to "Hat Full of Stars" ?
Love Yuka but that song was so ZZZZZZZZZZ, especially if other ladies in the same comp also skated to GFB.
On another note how could Yuka have done if she continued? Could she have won another World title or stayed competitive for the podium all the way until 1998? She didnt even have a World medal before the 94 Worlds and that was an incomplete field. She didnt get a triple lutz until 93 though, and get a triple flip and start attempting a triple lutz in the short program until 94. As much as I like her skating I tend to think someone who had trouble beating the likes of Kerrigan, Baiul, Bonaly, and Chen would have alot of trouble beating the likes of Kwan, Lipinski, Slutskaya, and an improved Chen. Then again maybe her skating and reputation would have started to take off with that World title.
I recall being introduced to a number of obscure skaters on the pro circuit that I never would've known otherwise.
I remember skaters like Rory Flack-Burghart, Charlene Wong, Dan Hollander etc. as frequent regulars during the height of the skating boom--none of which had a world medal to their name.
Sure, they weren't top billing skaters, but they probably made way more money during that period than they would've in any other skating venue.
Someone who truly capitalized IMO was Caryn Kadavy. A no-name skater to most of the mainstream audience, only one world medal on her resume, and yet she made a name for herself (much like Yuka did) on the pro circuit by consistently placing well in several pro competitions.
Unlike Wong or Flack, she still had 3 (relatively) consistent triples, which was enough to challenge for titles in any pro competition in those days.
I guess my point was that there was an unprecedented opportunity post-1994 to carve a well-earning niche out for yourself as a professional skater, regardless of your amateur career, which had to be tremendously enticing for any skater competing during that time.
Of course, having world and Olympics medals probably made that task infinitely more easy--but isn't that true in any situation?
But I do recognize that these opportunities were probably open exclusively for North American skaters since that was where all the money was at the time.
I'm sure for no-name, non-American/Canadian skaters, it must've been a lot more difficult.
I think between Sato and Ito, Sato was the more likely to succeed in a comeback by that point, although I dont know if she could have beaten the likes of Kwan either.
She had (and has) edges, style and artistry that were the envy of her peers and of other skaters' coaches. I don't see what is "puzzling" about a career where someone manages to generate that level of respect and appreciation, unless you measure success only by medals or titles.
Stale pastry is hollow succour to a man who is bereft of ostrich. - Sheldon Cooper, The Big Bang Theory
She's done everything she's attempted completely and sucessfully.
She was a National Jr Champ and a National Sr Champ in Japan.
She was a World Jr Champ, then a World Sr Champ
She was a Pro Champ
She had a long Pro career.
She's done Choreography for Elite Skaters from several countries.
She and her husband coach some of the best of the best in the US.
She is well thought of, has been nominated for a coaching award, and has been recognized for her contributions to skating.
So I really don't understand this thread . What more could she possibly do?
I just don't see how skaters like Nancy, Oksana, Surya, Lu Chen, etc., were so head and shoulders above her.
The girl could skate like nobody's business. She had the best edges in the field, well-choreographed programs and wonderful musicality. And when she was on (like at 94 worlds) she could be a threat for gold no matter who was competing IMO.
Her only issue was consistency, but then whose wasn't in 1994? The entire ladies field that season struggled with consistency. No one was putting two clean skates together, and results were all over the place.
I think it's logical to assume she would've improved artistically along with the rest of the field.
Take her SP from this pro competition, for example: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiqKBgGr0CM
Now replace her loop combo with a clean lutz combo...don't you think the quality and maturity of that program would've challenged for top 3 in any worlds from 95-98?
I personally do. She was a quality skater through and through. If she landed the difficult triples, I don't see why she wouldn't be in the running for gold.
Hatfull of Stars as a routine was more like a bowlfull of vomit. As a skater however I think Yuka would have done much better post C.O.P. as her basic skills were sublime. I loved her skating.
If I had a dollar for every time I got distracted, I wish I had some ice cream.
From the sounds of it, I should feel lucky that I never had to suffer through Hat Full of Stars during its heyday. I absolutely love Yuka though and loved that Manleywoman interview. In the interview, Yuka says she always had an ideal of what she wanted her skating to be, and it clearly showed. Her edges were/are incredible.
"Corporation, n. An ingenious device for obtaining individual profit without individual responsibility." - Ambrose Bierce
It is too bad Surya did not turn pro sooner. I read she had some huge money offers after the 95 Wrolds. Her amateur career would just go down the drain after 95 as both her jumping and skating diminished in quality, and the likes of Kwan, Lipinski, Slutskaya, and an ever more artistic Chen emerged. Even in Europe she was clearly surpassed by Slutskaya and Butyrskaya.
Thank goodness Bonaly didn't retire after 1994 or we'd never have gotten The Backflip in Nagano.
To think that fun is simple fun, while earnest things are earnest, proves all too plain that neither one thou truthfully discernest.
I think Sato would've been competitive for a couple more seasons at least (for podium spots if not the title).