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  1. #241

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    Quote Originally Posted by Carolla5501 View Post
    As long as she is happy I fail to see why the rest of us should care. I admit that I wondered why USFS gave her Skate America last year, but it doesn't sound like they are giving her big events this year and if she wants to go out there and skate then why is it a problem?

    I am sure some of us have hobbies that we will never be world class in. I run half marathons. I have no hope of ever winning one or even finishing in the top half, but that doesn't mean I am going to quit training and running them? So... why isn't she entitled to that same experience. I think she's smart enough to know what she can expect with what she has on her plate. Last year at Nationals she seemed fine with the outcome.

  2. #242

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    Quote Originally Posted by AxelAnnie View Post
    Why do you think someone (anyone) who was a National Champion would want to compete knowing they will not match their former achievements. I understand competing is fun, and in a perfect world, a competition is a marker in time of where you stack up against others.

    However, watching an athlete who achieved greatness, compete past their prime always makes me sad. Whatever the sport - Joe Montana, Fumie Suguri. Sarah Hughes when she wasn't in shape after the Olympics. That is just my bias.
    I don't understand why your point of view is something you think the skaters should take into account The skaters you listed and I would add Katarina Witt to that list as another notable person, did so because they wanted to. The only person whose opinions count, is the skater, and possibly their coaches/team. The statement in bold answers your own question - it is their choice. Who are you to take their choice away from them?

    Just because you don't get it, or it makes you sad, do you really think they should not be competing?

    If it makes you sad, don't watch them?

  3. #243

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    AxelAnnie, how others live their lives; or spend their time and money isn't up to you.
    You've made your feelings very clear.

  4. #244

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    Quote Originally Posted by skatesindreams View Post
    AxelAnnie, how others live their lives; or spend their time and money isn't up to you.
    You've made your feelings very clear.
    You are kidding, right? I thought it was up to me. Geesh.

    I was talking about how I view the situation. I hate watching people who have attained greatness slide down the other side of the hill. Simply my opinion.

    As to taking up a slot.....who pays for these skaters to compete? If the skaters are subsidized by USFSA, and local clubs, wouldn't that money be better spent on up and coming skaters who need exposure? Actually, I don't know how that works, so it is just a question.
    DH - and that's just my opinion

  5. #245
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    The funding point is moot, as Rachael is not getting any. Calm down and just let her skate. What's it to you?

  6. #246

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    Quote Originally Posted by AxelAnnie View Post
    As to taking up a slot.....who pays for these skaters to compete? If the skaters are subsidized by USFSA, and local clubs, wouldn't that money be better spent on up and coming skaters who need exposure? Actually, I don't know how that works, so it is just a question.
    There are 30 U.S. Ladies listed in USFS' International Selection Pool, and 21 currently have at least 1 international senior or junior assignment. 7 of 8 were Junior 6th or below or Novice 2nd-4th from 2013 Nationals and were not assigned to a JGP this year (ETA: I don't believe any of the 7 were "robbed" of a spot; Keiser originally was assigned to a JGP but reportedly withdrew due to injury. So my response to AxelAnnie's "wouldn't that money be better spent on up and coming skaters who need exposure?" is no in this case).

    8 different U.S. ladies will compete in the Senior Grand Prix (14 slots total) - USFS pays for the 3 going to Skate America; the others received Grand Prix invitations from other federations (USFS pays for 1 coach per GP skater).

    10 have received 1 Senior B assignment each, including Flatt; 9 have received at least 1 JGP assignment (14 slots total) - all expenses paid for by USFS.

    Only Alissa Czisny of the ISP ladies who have previously competed as a senior internationally has not been assigned an international to date and I assume she may not be competition-ready yet.

    Quote Originally Posted by valyrian View Post
    The funding point is moot, as Rachael is not getting any.
    Flatt currently is not listed in a Team USA funded envelope; however, she can be promoted to Team C if she medals at Cup of Nice.
    Last edited by Sylvia; 10-02-2013 at 05:40 PM.
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

  7. #247

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    Thanks Sylvia.
    DH - and that's just my opinion

  8. #248
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    Flatt currently is not listed in a Team USA funded envelope; however, she can be promoted to Team C if she medals at Cup of Nice.
    In which case, I would say she deserves the funding just as much as any skater who medaled. The fact that she once was medaling at more prestigious events is irrelevant to me. If she does what she has to in order to qualify for the funding, she should get it.

    In some other sports, there is more of a place for athletes who are past their prime but still want to compete. They have "masters" or "age group" or "silver" or other categories for those athletes. Having those categories really helps those sports too because enough people still want to see those athletes and interact with them and it brings attention to the sport. As an example, Julie Moss, who is famous for dragging herself across the finish line of the Ironman World Championships one year in the sort of "never give up" spirit that endurance sports are known for, now competes in Ironmans as an "age grouper."

    People love it and don't think it's remotely 'sad.' She's not competing against the elite athletes any more because she isn't one but people in her age group can put themselves up against her and see how they rank. She can still win prizes and get sponsors. And, if she were to be as good as the elites, she could turn pro again if she still wanted that life for herself. But, she still has choices if she doesn't.

    The closest thing that we have in skating is people like Midori Ito competing in the Adult track. It brings a lot of buzz to those competitions and she has fun and so do the other athletes who compete with her. It's only "sad" if you want it to be.
    Actual bumper sticker series: Jesus is my co-pilot. Satan is my financial advisor. Budha is my therapist. L. Ron Hubbard owes me $50.

  9. #249
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    Quote Originally Posted by AxelAnnie View Post
    Why do you think someone (anyone) who was a National Champion would want to compete knowing they will not match their former achievements. I understand competing is fun, and in a perfect world, a competition is a marker in time of where you stack up against others.

    However, watching an athlete who achieved greatness, compete past their prime always makes me sad. Whatever the sport - Joe Montana, Fumie Suguri. Sarah Hughes when she wasn't in shape after the Olympics. That is just my bias.
    I'm baffled that anyone wants to do it at this level when they are not fully committed to it because of the massive cost of competing at this level in this sport. As for the argument that college athletes have the same pressures--not so much. Athletes competing for Stanford have access to a wealth of on campus resources for training and academic support that Rachel would not.

    I also wonder if this girl will burn herself out by 25. That is not unheard of for high achievers and young millenial women seem to be particular vulnerable.

  10. #250

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    If Rachael were skating in Collegiate or Adult comps or some special oldtimers track nobody would question it at all and in fact she would bring enormous excitement to those comps. But to me she is focused on her own desires and not giving much thought to how she is representing either her sport or her country. She has already tried this combo of Stanford and competitive skating and it didn't go very well. I found her embarrassing to watch of late, frankly, and don't understand how she herself can be happy with what she put out there. (Although I admit her FS at 2012 Nats was a great flashback.) I truly respect Rachael's drive, brains, and positive spirit, but I would respect her character more if she said, You know what, I've already been a champion -- now I'm in the next phase of my life and I'm going to give an extra chance to one of those kids who's busting her butt for what I already had.

    Johnny Weir showed the kind of pride I'm talking about when he withdrew in the middle of COR and from nats last season because he recognized he was not at the same level as his competition any more. http://johnnyscomebackgiftfund.com/2...championships/ He spoke and acted like a champion. That is where Rachael puzzles me. She treats competitive skating like a personal hobby. I'm sorry, but it's just not. Her attitude diminishes the sport. JMO.

  11. #251

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spun Silver View Post
    IJohnny Weir showed the kind of pride I'm talking about when he withdrew in the middle of COR and from nats last season because he recognized he was not at the same level as his competition any more. http://johnnyscomebackgiftfund.com/2...championships/ He spoke and acted like a champion. That is where Rachael puzzles me. She treats competitive skating like a personal hobby. I'm sorry, but it's just not. Her attitude diminishes the sport. JMO.
    Are you kidding me???? Her desire to compete "diminishes the sport???" Good grief, I will never understand why some posters here just take the attitude of "they aren't at the level they used to be, they won't medal" = washed up, lousy, have no right to even show up for the competition, but only for some skaters, not necessarily the ones that they personally favor. Rachel has every right to compete, she's not asking for special favors or to be placed in competitions she hasn't earned the place to be in from USFS. She isn't taking a spot from anyone else, what's the problem here? It seems that certain skaters who are not favored on this board (eg: Rachael, Evan) with previous success who are admittedly past their best skating days suddenly fit into the "go away, you shouldn't even by trying" category. Meanwhile, to use another example, Mirai Nagasu, whose work ethic sucks by her own admission and whose skating of the past few years just keeps going further downhill is still fervently claimed to be so brilliant and many here hope and pray she makes the Olympic team. (And before anyone screams, I've always been more of a Mirai fan than Rachael fan). Everyone has the right to compete within the scope USFS permits them. Period. And Spun, I'm not accusing you of bashing Rachael, I just think your comment about her attitude makes no sense considering how much she loves skating. She isn't everyone's cup of tea, but she still has a right and the fight to be in the mix, so I say go for it and skate!
    "Once you've skated together long enough, and you're really good friends, you can close your eyes, put your hand out and she's right there." Joe Dolkiewicz, 2011 US Novice Pairs Bronze Medalist

  12. #252

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    No, I'm not kidding you. If Rachael is really skating for the love of skating, she can shine on the collegiate level or in shows. I am not talking about Rachael's rights, which I am not disputing, but the fact that other, younger skaters who hope for a future in the sport would benefit from her spot which she does not need -- she has only one way to go in skating, downhill!

    As for the comparison with Mirai, the key point for me is that unlike Rachael, Mirai has not moved on. Taken some college courses, yes -- found a new career and established herself on the way there, no (AFAIK). She is one of many who are busting their butts in hopes of skating glory. I don't think Rachael has any thought of further skating glory. Please correct me if I am wrong. She is doing it for fun or as a personal challenge whereas for others their skating futures are on the line. Noblesse oblige.

  13. #253
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    Well if Rachael is such a terrible skater now, then Mirai should easily be able to beat her then. Same with the other folks who "skating futures are on the line."

    FWIW, Rachel's Skate America scores, which were pretty terrible for her, already meet the technical minimums required for 4CC and the Olympics.

  14. #254

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spun Silver View Post
    No, I'm not kidding you. If Rachael is really skating for the love of skating, she can shine on the collegiate level or in shows. I am not talking about Rachael's rights, which I am not disputing, but the fact that other, younger skaters who hope for a future in the sport would benefit from her spot which she does not need -- she has only one way to go in skating, downhill!

    As for the comparison with Mirai, the key point for me is that unlike Rachael, Mirai has not moved on. Taken some college courses, yes -- found a new career and established herself on the way there, no (AFAIK). She is one of many who are busting their butts in hopes of skating glory. I don't think Rachael has any thought of further skating glory. Please correct me if I am wrong. She is doing it for fun or as a personal challenge whereas for others their skating futures are on the line. Noblesse oblige.
    Those fabulous younger skaters can earn their spot by beating Rachael and every other competitor fair and square. I doubt judges are going to cut Rachael any breaks because of who she is; in fact, it will more likely go the other way, against her. I just get tired of the "whine and cheese" about skaters continuing to go on and "taking spots away" from those more deserving. (How many times did we hear complaints about Michelle Kwan continuing to compete because it was keeping Sasha Cohen from becoming National Champion, when the factor that kept Sasha from the championship was her continual habit of falling on her ass in freeskates). If they are more deserving and they are better, then let them compete and earn their spots.
    "Once you've skated together long enough, and you're really good friends, you can close your eyes, put your hand out and she's right there." Joe Dolkiewicz, 2011 US Novice Pairs Bronze Medalist

  15. #255

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spun Silver View Post
    Johnny Weir showed the kind of pride I'm talking about when he withdrew in the middle of COR
    Withdrawing in the middle of a competition is not something to be proud of, especially if you're attending at someone else's expense (in this case, the federation's). It's not as if doing so opens an opportunity for someone else instead.

    Sometimes it's necessary if it is physically impossible to compete, but that's another story.

    That is where Rachael puzzles me. She treats competitive skating like a personal hobby.
    For anything short of international competition, i.e., regionals-sectionals-Nationals, it's on her own dime so for all practical purposes it absolutely is a personal hobby. Skaters who regularly make it to Nationals and get the attention of the international committee are just doing it at a much higher level than those who never get past regionals.

    Representing the US at a senior B event is a step up from that, with somewhat greater responsibilities. But, based on Sylvia's breakdown above, who are you thinking is deserving of that opportunity and missing out because Flatt was given the assignment?

    We're not talking about anything more than that yet. If Flatt comes out and qualifies for Nationals and skates well enough there to earn a top-6 placement, then she could be in line for a more prestigious assignment, but she's not going to be handed one at anyone else's expense without skating well enough to earn it.

  16. #256
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    What is the big deal that people are upset about this assignment?!?!? Siraj and Wang are on the JGP circuit, Ceasario has two GPs, Ashley Cain and Kiri Baga also have gotten senior B events, Hicks has a GP event and a senior B medal.... Who are all these "amazing talents" that Rachael is supposedly usurping to taking a spot in a rather minor Senior B competition?
    I meant to take the high road.... but I missed the exit.

  17. #257

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spun Silver View Post
    If Rachael were skating in Collegiate or Adult comps or some special oldtimers track nobody would question it at all and in fact she would bring enormous excitement to those comps. But to me she is focused on her own desires and not giving much thought to how she is representing either her sport or her country. She has already tried this combo of Stanford and competitive skating and it didn't go very well. I found her embarrassing to watch of late, frankly, and don't understand how she herself can be happy with what she put out there. (Although I admit her FS at 2012 Nats was a great flashback.) I truly respect Rachael's drive, brains, and positive spirit, but I would respect her character more if she said, You know what, I've already been a champion -- now I'm in the next phase of my life and I'm going to give an extra chance to one of those kids who's busting her butt for what I already had.

    Johnny Weir showed the kind of pride I'm talking about when he withdrew in the middle of COR and from nats last season because he recognized he was not at the same level as his competition any more. http://johnnyscomebackgiftfund.com/2...championships/ He spoke and acted like a champion. That is where Rachael puzzles me. She treats competitive skating like a personal hobby. I'm sorry, but it's just not. Her attitude diminishes the sport. JMO.
    Nice post.
    DH - and that's just my opinion

  18. #258
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    I'm amazed at the number of people that are ragging on Rachael.. Obviosuly, $$ is not an issue for the Flatts otherwise her parents would've told her "enough already" and that's it. So, if they can pay for her to do what she is doing and she wants to skate, then so what? Good for her if she can do it all and be happy with her results! Geez.. Let the girl go out on her own terms; she will be done when she is ready.

  19. #259

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    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    Withdrawing in the middle of a competition is not something to be proud of, especially if you're attending at someone else's expense (in this case, the federation's). It's not as if doing so opens an opportunity for someone else instead.

    Sometimes it's necessary if it is physically impossible to compete, but that's another story.
    This is a good point, but I was talking about a different kind of pride -- a high respect for the sport, oneself, and the fans that makes the athlete refuse (as far as possible) to go out on a low note. Obviously Johnny was mistaken about his competitiveness and he recognized it early in the season.

    For anything short of international competition, i.e., regionals-sectionals-Nationals, it's on her own dime so for all practical purposes it absolutely is a personal hobby. Skaters who regularly make it to Nationals and get the attention of the international committee are just doing it at a much higher level than those who never get past regionals.

    Representing the US at a senior B event is a step up from that, with somewhat greater responsibilities.
    I don't necessarily agree with this. For most at the lower levels skating is a hobby. For some, the lower levels are the stepping stones to the elite level, and that is where the assignment of spots is angsty.

    But, based on Sylvia's breakdown above, who are you thinking is deserving of that opportunity and missing out because Flatt was given the assignment?
    Well, my personal opinion is that someone like Polina Edmunds or Angela Wang would benefit greatly from a low-pressure senior B international assignment this year.

  20. #260
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spun Silver View Post
    Well, my personal opinion is that someone like Polina Edmunds or Angela Wang would benefit greatly from a low-pressure senior B international assignment this year.
    Polina Edmunds has had two great JGP competitions and has earned a spot to JGPF, which gives her a bye to Nationals. Angela will have the same opportunity to do so in her second event this week. They will also get more ranking points doing two JGP than a single Bs. That's why Josh and Jason have such high world ranking despite not doing a single senior competition.
    Last edited by Mrs. P; 10-02-2013 at 11:57 PM.

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