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  1. #261
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    ^^ Yeah, but however, don't you think had AshleyW continued with her early season brilliance and not had the rough patch at GPF (a couple of fluke falls) and at U.S. Nats (loss of training time due to hip pointer and food poisoning combined with nerves, resulting in a couple of fluke falls), that she might be heading into Worlds being considered more of a threat for the podium? Also, especially had she worked up to landing a clean 3/3 at a late season comp prior to Worlds? OTOH, maybe it's a good thing if Ash is right now being considered more of an underdog.

    Oh, the constantly rising, receding, rumbling and fluctuating tides of figure skating. Debate and speculation will never cease, and I guess that's as it should be.

    BTW, I was just looking at the recent performance of another Ashley; Cain to be exact. She really is so lovely to watch on the ice. Too bad there doesn't seem to be a tall partner around so she might continue to pursue pairs. AshleyC had such a gorgeous lp skate going at the recent U.S. Nats, but she suffered a couple of falls which kept her down in the standings. Since her mother is a former Canadian ice dancer, and her Dad hails from Australia, I wonder if AshleyC might at all be considering the possibility of making an attempt to skate for either Canada or Australia in singles. It might give her more of an opportunity to compete at Worlds, especially in light of the packed standings and limited spots available in the U.S. ladies ranks at the moment.


    Re Carolina Kostner, thanks for the info, olympic. I was looking at Caro's Euros lp yesterday. I'm impressed by the way she's improved her technique and consistency on her jumps. Most likely, partly as a result of winning Worlds and having such a great season last year, her confidence and maturity are very palpable right now. I wonder why Caro was briefly considering retirement? Hunger is definitely necessary to go the long haul for Sochi.

    However much I admire Yu Na, Caro, and Mao, I kinda wish to see some unexpected results at Worlds.

  2. #262
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    BTW, Kostner just hit it out of the park in the SP at The Challenge Cup in the Netherlands today:

    http://schaatsen.nl/challenge-cup-2013/uitslagen

    72.81 - Nailed 3l, 3t-3t, 2x and all level 4 spins except the layback.

    Thinking Worlds will be Yu Na, Mao and Carolina gunning for medals after the SP, with Ashley chasing them in 4th or possibly 5th (depends on Sotnikova). Not necessarily a bad thing for Ashley, but ...
    Interesting you throw Sotnikova into the mix but not Tuktamysheva? The SP hasn't been Liza's strength this season, but as a whole, she's done better than Adelina overall. I know Adelina beat her by a few points at Europeans but Tuk has had the better season and her FS scores have been consistently high.

  3. #263
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinky166 View Post
    Interesting you throw Sotnikova into the mix but not Tuktamysheva? The SP hasn't been Liza's strength this season, but as a whole, she's done better than Adelina overall. I know Adelina beat her by a few points at Europeans but Tuk has had the better season and her FS scores have been consistently high.
    I think it's b/c the only area Liza can beat out people is on jumps. The rest of her skating is good but not at the level needed to challenge for the top. She's getting better and has improved since last season but in terms of someone who could challenge the top, this year, it's Adelina. I think Liza's confidence is much better and Adelina's appears to be on the upswing since nationals so we'll have to see how those two handle their first worlds.

    As for Ashley, I don't doubt that if she adds the content to her programs she'll be in the medal hunt. With a 3-3 she'll give herself a much better shot at competing with the top names. Despite what she said, she needs it. Mao has the 3A planned plus two other triples; Yu-Na, Carolina, Akiko, Adelina, Liza, Kaetlyn, Zijun, Gracie and probably a few more all have some kind of 3-3 planned. Ashley was able to skate by with her 3f-2t at nationals without any problems but there's very little chance of her making that final flight if she doesn't at least attempt a 3-3. Take the -GOE from the 2-foot landing but put that combo in there. It's a necessity at this point.

  4. #264
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    ^^ You might be right re strategy needed for AshleyW. Will be interesting to see what approach she takes. I think AshleyW definitely has two highly competitive programs and unique all-around spunk and polished packaging, which enhances a skater's image. At this point, she also needs confident, clean, extra added difficult-content-filled programs too. As usual, skate position will likely play into her coaching team's strategy.

    In regard to Sotnikova, she's extremely talented artistically and technically, but I haven't seen anything yet this season indicating that she's overcome her nerves during big international competitions. Liza has a determined mindset and she's a battler, but honestly, I am not in love with her skating.

  5. #265
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    In regard to Sotnikova, she's extremely talented artistically and technically, but I haven't seen anything yet this season indicating that she's overcome her nerves during big international competitions. Liza has a determined mindset and she's a battler, but honestly, I am not in love with her skating.
    Adelina had a very strong SP at nationals and did decently in the LP. But she had her best performance of the season at Europeans. That was her first major senior international event and she did wonderfully. That's not to say her consistency woes are of the past, just that over the course of her last two competitions she's shown improvement.

    Liza's jumps are amazing but her overall skating isn't something the judges typically look for. That's not to say she won't do well...just that if both Liza and Adelina skate well, Adelina usually comes out on top and I can't say I disagree with that.

  6. #266
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    ^^ I'll take your word that's statistically the case, since I don't closely follow either of them. But just from what I've seen in the early course of this season, it seemed like Liza tended to prevail a bit more re pulling out clean programs. I do agree that Sotnikova has more edge re potentially great artistry.

    I'm really not sure what judges typically look for, other than technical consistency, since IJS has kind of limited and therefore further challenged artistic growth, IMHO. It will definitely be interesting to see how all the ladies prevail this season at Worlds.
    Last edited by aftershocks; 02-21-2013 at 11:44 PM. Reason: challenges predominate ;)

  7. #267
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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    If Wagner got a 3-3 she could hit 70 as well. Remember she was getting 67 for her SP as is.
    I hope so. As long as she hits the 3-3 cleanly and gets her levels on the spins and FW. I think Ashley's biggest challenge is to NOT get ahead of herself: Take each element as it comes. If she can do that, she might medal

  8. #268
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    If Ashley skates a clean SP w/ a 3-2, it's still possible for her to be around 5th w/ that content (as long as she gets her levels), isn't it? Her SP got 66 pts. at the GPF.

    And correct me if I'm wrong, but the only people ahead of her in the SP this season score-wise are 1. Yu Na (71 pts.), 2. Mao (74 pts.) 3. Carolina (72 pts.), and 4. Adelina (67 pts.). Akiko has scored 65 pts. x2, and that despite a 3-3 and skating lights out in her home country, probably because she is the #2 JPN lady. Kiira scored in the mid-60s at Finlandia, but she's now gone from the competition. Kanako is around 64 pts. right now, but we'll see if she's called on any rotations at Worlds outside of JPN. Gracie clean in the SP is around 62 pts. If she does a Rippon Lutz (possible, maybe not likely), that might come up around 64 pts.

    Liza has not scored near that this year in the SP, and Kaetlyn is kind of new to the scene. She was a bit subpar at 4CC's.

    Who else is there to effectively knock a clean 3-2 Ashley out of the final group then??

    Ashley is pretty darn good at skating the LP while being a little behind after the SP. That might be a strategy. OTOH, I'd like to see the 3-3, all guns blazing just because it would add to some dynamic skating.

    Honestly, I think this competition will be even more high-caliber and intense than Vancouver!

  9. #269
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maximillian View Post
    ITA with all this. One of the things I've been thinking a lot about lately has been the feeling I get that the rivalry between Michelle and Irina was one that was primarily manufactured behind the scenes, because while I admit to being an Irina fan at the time (I always like the under-dog), in retrospect, she wasn't even close to Michelle and the big broohaha that was made about her beating Michelle and being better than Michelle seems absolutely ludicrous upon reflection.

    What I wonder about is how much this got into Michelle's head through the years and really made her question herself and her skating. How was it that she was now losing (occasionally) and being challenged by a woman who was no where near her level in the previous quad? Much was made of Irina's artistic improvements and triple/triples but if you watch any of her programs from back then you can see that the whole "new" Irina was a lot of smoke and mirrors. And while in the end Michelle wound up winning most of their battles throughout the quad (at least the important ones Worlds 2000, 2001) I do think that it might have negatively affected Michelle and might have led to some of the poor decisions she made in the 01-02 season.
    Quote Originally Posted by smarts1 View Post
    Really!?!?! Is there any evidence/posters who talked about Joannie's quad or 3A?

    Source

    A final note: Canada’s Joannie Rochette landed one quad jump in Tuesday’s practice sessions but did not plan to attempt it yet in competition.
    Obviously one time doesn't mean she did it regularly, but I also can't imagine someone trying for a quad only once either.

  10. #270

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    Here are the 2013 Nationals Championship (Senior) highlight videos that mix competition and backstage footage, as posted on USFS' official YT channel:

    Ladies SP: http://youtube.com/watch?v=H5pelOHTrdo

    Ladies FS: http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=i7l7CoK10jE
    "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

  11. #271
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    If all or enough of Kim, Asada, Kostner, Suzuki, Sot, Tuk, Murakami, Gold etc go clean in the short, Wagner might not even make the final flight with just a 3/2 in the short.

    HOWEVER

    Maththematically, a 3flip3toe gives her a boost in base value of around 2.7 from a 3flip2toe. But she usually gets +1s and some +2s on the 3/2 combo. If she goes for the 3/3 and 2foots / steps out / falls and worse yet gets an < call, she may actually be worse off than she were to land a clean and secure 3/2.

  12. #272

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    ITA. But even if she's edged out of the final group, she should still be close to a top 5 position score wise. While it's best to skate in the final group, she ended up 4th from the penultimate group last year.

    I think she should do the 3-2 in the SP, and try for 2a3t in the LP.

    Regarding her 3l..2a series, it is barely worth more than a 3l2t. If she could do a 3l-tano 2t, she would probably break even.

    Someone suggested she should work on 2a1/2l3sal. That would be a great combo for her. Too bad 3l on the end of combos is so risky, as a 2a3loop would solve a lot of issues for her!
    Keeper of Nathalie Pechelat's bitchface.

  13. #273
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    ...a 3flip3toe gives her a boost in base value of around 2.7 from a 3flip2toe. But she usually gets +1s and some +2s on the 3/2 combo. If she goes for the 3/3 and 2foots / steps out / falls and worse yet gets an < call, she may actually be worse off than she were to land a clean and secure 3/2.
    Exactly, that's why it's a risk in the first place. But she really needs to get into that final group if she wants the big FS scores. Not convinced she will make it with just a 3/2 (unless one or more of the above messes up, which is not likely). The SP is crucial, really...

  14. #274
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    Ashley tweeted the behind the scenes montage of her photoshoot for IFS.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  15. #275

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Ashley tweeted the behind the scenes montage of her photoshoot for IFS.
    Thanks, you beat me to posting! There's even a new thread in GSD now : New Ashley Wagner IFS Magazine cover and video
    "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

  16. #276
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    Maybe it's just me but did anyone else find the scores at Europeans at bit high/inflated? I know 4CCs is notorious for being that way, but those marks seemed less generous this year, and Europeans more. In order words, I could see Adelina having a clean SP at Worlds and scoring say a 64 instead of a 67, meaning a clean Ashley with a 3-2 might be able to beat her. Also Kanako was at 64 for getting all her jumps rotated...considering ALL her jumps in the SP are in the 2nd half and URs have a been an ongoing issue for awhile now, I would assume she's more likely destined for a score in the low 60s (like 60-63) for her SP at Worlds, and if more than one jump gets called or she has mistakes then lower than that. Tuk with a 3lz-3t, 3lo, and 2a tano in the SP should score high, potentially higher than Adelina with 3t-3t and 3f, but for whatever reason Tuk seems to be a lot more consistent with her jumps in the FS and less so in the SP, odd as that may seem.

    If Ashley can get 3f-3t< but otherwise landed cleanly or 3f-3t with full rotation but a slight two-foot, it might help her score a point or so, but any bigger issue than that and she's better of with the 3-2 IMO. Risk versus reward. She just needs to be in the hunt after the SP, skating in the final warmup should help her from a PCS standpoint in the FS, but skating in the penultimate group if she's a couple points behind the medalists is not a terrible position to be in. Ashley is a strong FS skater, what she needs to avoid is having a mess of a SP, which is why she may want to forego the 3f-3t because she has confidence she can nail the SP with a 3-2 through having done that all season.

    Further, doing a 3-2 in the SP, if it ends up putting her in the penultimate warm-up group, might make her MORE likely to try for 2a-3t in the FS because she won't have the luxury of knowing how others ahead of her have done, whereas if she's in the final flight and most of the ladies are making mistakes, she might just play it safe and try and pull out the clean skate. I feel like Ando used this strategy in 2010-2011 and it usually worked, she just did 2a-2t at her GPs and it was enough to win, then at GPF she was in last going into the FS so did the 2a-3t and she wound up winning the FS even though overall she was only 5th, she again went for 2a-3t at Nationals and 4CCs because she had to compete against Mao. But then at Worlds, Mao was sort of out of the picture after the SP, Yuna did not have a clean SP either, and Carolina wasn't trying much content, so Miki played it safe with 2a-2t and ended up being World Champ anyways.
    Last edited by pinky166; 02-22-2013 at 06:25 AM.

  17. #277
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    She may have BEEN a strong free skater...however, she's had four falls in her last two attempts. Whoops

  18. #278
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinky166 View Post
    Maybe it's just me but did anyone else find the scores at Europeans at bit high/inflated?
    You are not alone

  19. #279

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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    She may have BEEN a strong free skater...however, she's had four falls in her last two attempts. Whoops
    You keep repeating this ad nauseum. I think we're all aware of what happened at the GPF and Nationals by now. Thankfully, Ashley has had some time to regroup now.

  20. #280

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    Quote Originally Posted by pinky166 View Post
    Maybe it's just me but did anyone else find the scores at Europeans at bit high/inflated? I know 4CCs is notorious for being that way, but those marks seemed less generous this year, and Europeans more.
    Looking at Adelina in particular, the difference in her score at Euros over Ashley's efforts this year all came in TES - and really mostly from the 3-3. At the GPF Ashley had everything called as level 4, same as Adelina at Europeans, so they both had a base value for non jump elements of 13.2. However, the 3-3 gives her a 1.6 lead over Ashley, and even though Ashley has 2 jumps getting the credit for being in the second half, she can't make that difference up. I didn't find her SP score over inflated at all - every element was sharp & clean, the program is really well put together and her speed & ice coverage is really noticable when you see her live. Same with Carolina. The only mark from Europeans that I would quibble with is Liza's free skate - it's all jumps & nothing else. There are really strong contenders from Europe, Japan and Canada all capable of producing short programs in the region of 62-67 points, and Gracie and Ashley are going to have very little room for error.

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