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  1. #21
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    Even East Coast to most of Europe is a pretty long flight, and more importantly, a six time zone difference (if it's a location in central European time).
    It's actually 9 time zones different from the Eastern US if they held Europeans in Moscow. But realistically, that's about the farthest east Europeans would ever be, so we are talking at most 4676 miles from New York. OTOH, Tokyo is 5471 miles from LA and that's about the closest 4CC would ever be outside North America.

    Still, it does seem like more of the top skaters are making the trip than there were several years ago. I think the ice dancers are setting a good example here.

  2. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Susan M View Post
    It's actually 9 time zones different from the Eastern US if they held Europeans in Moscow. But realistically, that's about the farthest east Europeans would ever be, so we are talking at most 4676 miles from New York. OTOH, Tokyo is 5471 miles from LA and that's about the closest 4CC would ever be outside North America.

    Still, it does seem like more of the top skaters are making the trip than there were several years ago. I think the ice dancers are setting a good example here.
    Talinn in 2010 was the farthest east I can recall in recent years. It's a seven hour difference, flying east (which I find tougher then flying west). Of course, not all skaters train near the relevant coasts, regardless of whether they are flying to 4CC or to Euros - e.g. the large number of skaters in the Detroit area, skaters in Colorado Springs, etc.

    I agree about the ice dancers, and while 4CC doesn't have deep fields, it does have really excellent teams at the top in recent years.

    Quote Originally Posted by professordeb View Post
    I would venture to say that a number of the top skaters don't attend 4CC because of travelling distances and time differences. For those who attend Europeans, I would venture that the most time difference would be about a 6-8 hours? Now take someone from the east coast of Canada and have them fly to Japan -- you are looking at something like a 14 hour time difference not to mention how long it would take to travel there. So I would venture to guess that sometimes top skaters from countries where time/distance is a factor may be inclined to give it a miss. What with there being top skaters from so many of the countries, I can understand why 4CC is likley to always have some skaters giving it a pass.
    So essentially, it's a ten-hour time difference, just in the other direction. And although somewhat shorter, traveling from the west coast to Europe isn't exactly a quick hop, either.

    I don't think it's the distance; if it were, skaters wouldn't go to NHK and CoC. It's more a matter of perception regarding the importance of the event, and the way the season is planned to peak at certain times.

  3. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheIronLady View Post
    There are several reasons I think Australia has unusual enthusiasm for and disproportionate interest in skating.
    Seriously I am not sure where these perceptions come from but unfortunately you are totally off the mark.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIronLady View Post
    There are a lot of Russian coaches working in Australia.
    There are not a lot of Russian coaches. The majority of our coaches are Australian with a smattering of coaches from other countries.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIronLady View Post
    On the whole it is not a cold weather country and has a relatively small population, but it has attracted top coaches and choreographers, including for a time Torvil and Dean.
    Sorry but the only time they coached in Australia was to do Dancing on Ice. Which was not a ratings hit and only did one season. And top coaches and choreographers may come out when someone personally pays for them. It is more an anomaly rather than standard practise.

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIronLady View Post
    Australia has also had talented skaters in the top ten and top twenty at Worlds: Joanne Carter, Miriam Manzano, Stephanie Zhang, and Anthony Liu... Cheltzie Lee... I think this speaks to the general athletic talent and love of sport that seems part of Australia's national character, but it also shows that Aussie skating fans and officials-- though small in number-- are devoted to figure skating. They share in the Anglo-American tradition of skating, which survives not only in America and Canada, but also in Britain. I think this gives them something to build on that Thailand or Mexico do not have.
    Given the skaters who do rise to the top, that does not prove anything about the dedication of skating fans and officials. Our sport survives on a volunteer workforce and gets no government support. As one of those volunteers I speak from experience. Even the possibility of hosting a National Championships is a massive workload in itself and requires hours of dedication and commitment. How is Australia meant to put on an international event under those circumstances?

    Quote Originally Posted by TheIronLady View Post
    It is a shame that things seem in decline there. Perhaps it is because IJS has made the sport so much harder. I still think the foundations are there to build on for Australia. It may be financially unrealistic, but it would be a great promotional boon to Australian skating to host 4CC.
    IJS has nothing to do with the popularity of our sport. People get involved in the sport and start skating because they like to skate, not because of the system. And the general public wouldn't know or even care how the sport is judged. However in Melbourne where I am based our sport has grown because of an excellent rink that was built in the heart of Melbourne. But that is basic grass roots and whilst it may get some coverage, it is usually as a novelty (such as driving a formula one vehicle on it). So the sport is not in decline, but if you think that is going to provide a case to host a 4CC you really do not know anything about how skating operates in Australia.
    When you are up to your arse in alligators it is difficult to remember you were only meant to be draining the swamp.

  4. #24

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheIronLady View Post
    There are several reasons I think Australia has unusual enthusiasm for and disproportionate interest in skating.

    There are a lot of Russian coaches working in Australia.

    On the whole it is not a cold weather country and has a relatively small population, but it has attracted top coaches and choreographers, including for a time Torvil and Dean.

    Australia has also had talented skaters in the top ten and top twenty at Worlds: Joanne Carter, Miriam Manzano, Stephanie Zhang, and Anthony Liu... Cheltzie Lee... I think this speaks to the general athletic talent and love of sport that seems part of Australia's national character, but it also shows that Aussie skating fans and officials-- though small in number-- are devoted to figure skating. They share in the Anglo-American tradition of skating, which survives not only in America and Canada, but also in Britain. I think this gives them something to build on that Thailand or Mexico do not have.

    It is a shame that things seem in decline there. Perhaps it is because IJS has made the sport so much harder. I still think the foundations are there to build on for Australia. It may be financially unrealistic, but it would be a great promotional boon to Australian skating to host 4CC.

    This was true of Perth in the late 90's. There were 5 Russians and a Polish coach.

  5. #25

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    If 4cc's were held as early as Europeans, perhaps more skaters would go. But that would mean US and Canadian Nationals would need to be held earlier. Perhaps the North American Nationals could be in December, and the Grand Prix could run Sept-Nov rather than Oct-Dec. (An extra month of competititions out of the year would be a good thing at least for the fans!)

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by snoopysnake View Post
    If 4cc's were held as early as Europeans, perhaps more skaters would go. But that would mean US and Canadian Nationals would need to be held earlier. Perhaps the North American Nationals could be in December, and the Grand Prix could run Sept-Nov rather than Oct-Dec. (An extra month of competititions out of the year would be a good thing at least for the fans!)
    This. The timing is all wrong wrt Canadian and American nationals. Plus the travel.
    Quote Originally Posted by allezfred View Post
    All this talk about how far people have to travel for events never seems to come up during the Grand Prix season....
    Yeah we do! Sometimes skaters get back-to-back GP assignments that are on totally different continents, and at least some of us wring our hands over it
    BARK LESS. WAG MORE.

  7. #27
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    Now that US, Canada, Japan and China all send their top skaters to 4CCs, I think 4CCs really is as prestigious as Euros.

  8. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Now that US, Canada, Japan and China all send their top skaters to 4CCs, I think 4CCs really is as prestigious as Euros.
    I especially enjoyed Chan, Abbott, and Wagner's performances at 4CC this year.

  9. #29

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Now that US, Canada, Japan and China all send their top skaters to 4CCs, I think 4CCs really is as prestigious as Euros.
    Quote Originally Posted by Cherub721 View Post
    I especially enjoyed Chan, Abbott, and Wagner's performances at 4CC this year.
    Does Abbott still qualify as the top US skater? He's not the national champion and hasn't had any great international results recently.

    That said, I agree that saying everyone sends their top skaters to 4CC is a stretch, and I expect it to be completely inaccurate next season. Olympic season Euros are exciting. Olympic season 4CC tend to be more of a consolation prize.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zemgirl View Post
    Does Abbott still qualify as the top US skater? He's not the national champion and hasn't had any great international results recently.
    He won the bronze medal this year at Nats, so if the US were sending top skaters, he would've been the third guy at 4CC, IMO. He may have been surpassed by Aaron and Miner, but I wouldn't rank Farris, Rippon, or Dornbush higher than Abbott.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cherub721 View Post
    I especially enjoyed Chan, Abbott, and Wagner's performances at 4CC this year.
    Chan, Abbott and Wagner skipping 4CCs this year is understandable due to their somewhat erratic season - doesn't change the general US and Canadian trend of sending their top skaters to 4CCs these couple of seasons - IIRC they were offered a trip to 4CCs but turned it down for strategic reasons. This is different to the last decade when they automatically skipped over Kwan and Cohen and went straight to the rest of the top five etc.

  12. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zemgirl View Post
    That said, I agree that saying everyone sends their top skaters to 4CC is a stretch, and I expect it to be completely inaccurate next season. Olympic season Euros are exciting. Olympic season 4CC tend to be more of a consolation prize.
    It's more of a timing than a prestige issue IMO.

  13. #33

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    Just like in 2010, none of the U.S. Olympic team members will go to Four Continents next year.
    "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

  14. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cherub721 View Post
    I especially enjoyed Chan, Abbott, and Wagner's performances at 4CC this year.
    Too bad Plushenko couldn't emulate the above skaters' performances.

    Just like in 2010, none of the U.S. Olympic team members will go to Four Continents next year.
    What is the time difference between Euros and the Olympics? If I were V&T, I would get a haircut and then consider whether I would do Euros given the pairs event is the first individual event at the Olympics and the team event that occurs before even when the Olympics officially commences (not sure whether S&S will or should compete in the team event). Same for the top ladies, where competing at Euros/4CC was not as big a deal previously because they normally skated at the end of the Olympics.

    But that's just the thing - if it were truly prestigious, skaters wouldn't be skipping it so readily.
    The top skaters regularly skip Worlds after the Olympics. Guess Worlds isn't truly prestigious.

  15. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    It's more of a timing than a prestige issue IMO.
    But that's just the thing - if it were truly prestigious, skaters wouldn't be skipping it so readily. And it's hard to consider the two event to be of equal prestige when the quality of 4CC fields is so dependent on timing and location.

    Looking at 2010, Mao Asada and the Zhangs were the only top skaters at 4CC, and two disciplines were won by skaters who did not qualify for the Olympics out of their own Nationals (Rippon and W/P). But every top European skater was in Tallinn for Euros, with the exception of DelSchoes who weren't ready to compete after Isabelle had her baby (they weren't really ready in Vancouver, either, but that's another matter).

    Quote Originally Posted by manhn View Post
    Too bad Plushenko couldn't emulate the above skaters' performances.
    What does that have to do with anything? Plushenko went to Euros and was too injured to complete the event. It's hardly the same as intentionally keeping top skaters out of an event.

    The top skaters regularly skip Worlds after the Olympics. Guess Worlds isn't truly prestigious.
    The following skaters skipped 2010 Worlds after top 5 placement at the Olympics: Shen and Zhao (retired), Evan Lysacek (may as well have retired), Plushenko (for whatever reason you choose to believe), Joannie Rochette (still dealing with the death of her mother, probably retired), Domnina/Shabalin (retired), Stephane Lambiel (retired), Belbin/Agosto (retired). Usually if skaters skip post-Olympic Worlds, is because they have ended their career or are taking a long hiatus. It's not the same as active skaters skipping an in-season event because of location/timing.
    Last edited by Zemgirl; 02-18-2013 at 04:42 PM.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Chan, Abbott and Wagner skipping 4CCs this year is understandable due to their somewhat erratic season - doesn't change the general US and Canadian trend of sending their top skaters to 4CCs these couple of seasons - IIRC they were offered a trip to 4CCs but turned it down for strategic reasons. This is different to the last decade when they automatically skipped over Kwan and Cohen and went straight to the rest of the top five etc.
    Hm... Abbott skipped 4CC last year when he was the National Champion. Czisny wasn't sent (and she had been automatically skipped like Kwan and Cohen - she specifically said she wasn't asked). Suzuki, Hanyu, and Kozuka didn't go to 4CC but did go to Worlds. Pang & Tong skipped 4CC.

    2011 was fairly well-attended, but Chan and Pang & Tong are missing.

    Yu-Na also skipped 4CC in 2011 and 2013 (I know you only mentioned China, Japan, US, and Canada, but she's basically the only top skater from outside those countries).

    Now, it may still be true that 4CC is more prestigious than Euros, if the level of 4CC skaters is that much better that even with a couple of top names missing the fields are still comparable to/stronger than Euros.

    Quote Originally Posted by manhn View Post
    Too bad Plushenko couldn't emulate the above skaters' performances.
    He did, in the long program.

  17. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cherub721 View Post
    Hm... Abbott skipped 4CC last year when he was the National Champion.
    He was named to 4CC and later withdrew due to injury.

    For countries with deeper fields, I like that some of the skaters/teams not going to Worlds have the opportunity to compete at 4CC and gain ISU World Standings ranking points and SB scores.
    "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

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    He was named to 4CC and later withdrew due to injury.
    Thanks - I had forgotten about that (I was only looking at the final 4CC results and noticed his name wasn't there).

  19. #39
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    All the European skaters really want to participate at the Euros, no matter what year it is. I don't get the same impression of 4CC. This year no Yuna Kim, Patrick Chan or Ashley Wagner...

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    For countries with deeper fields, I like that some of the skaters/teams not going to Worlds have the opportunity to compete at 4CC and gain ISU World Standings ranking points and SB scores.
    Interestingly, except for Russia, this hasn't been so much a problem for most Euro nations (occasionally French men and German ladies... about a century ago). They usually only have 1 or 2 skaters / teams at the elite level and there's really no reason not to send them to both Euros and Worlds, especially with the spacing between the timing of their Nationals, Euros and Worlds. It's almost by default that the same skaters go to Euros and Worlds.

    In recent years, (maybe after Turino?) I gradually see the same trend emerging for 4CCs. You see the top Chinese and NA pairs going (except during Olympic season), the top NA dance teams going, the top Japanese, NA and Chinese singles going. That has been a general trend I see. Certain top skaters may have skipped once in a while, due to timing, injury or strategizing, but most 4CCs nations have since 2006 sent their top skaters to 4CCs than not (perhaps the ISU has exerted pressure? I don't know). So in the past 2 Olympic quads, I see the prestige of Euros and 4CCs equaling, and with the surge in Japanese singles and NA dance teams in particular, 4CCs has featured as many if not more worlds medalists than Euros has in the same season.

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