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  1. #1
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    Post Ashley and Gracie: Mission Accomplished!

    [spoiler alert, for those who have not yet watched Worlds 2013, or the preceding 5 years]

    It was a dark day at Worlds 2008 when three US ladies failed to finish in the combined 13th spot (you know what I mean) and lost the right to send three US ladies to the upcoming Olympics, and next Worlds. Kimmie Meissner (7th), Beatrisa Liang (10th), and Ashley Wagner (16th) dropped the torch, ushering in the Dark Age of US Ladies skating. With their top finisher at 7th, there was no way to get under the 13 wire.

    At Worlds 2009, Flatt (5th: respectable) and Czisny (11th: my turn to bomb) continued the dry spell.

    At Worlds 2010, Nagasu (7th: impossible to make 13 when your best is 7th) and Flatt (9th: flat) could not get the ball bouncing.

    At Worlds 2011, Czisny (5th: respectable) and Flatt (12th: my turn to bomb worse than your bomb) could not light the fuse.

    At Worlds 2012, Wagner (4th: nicely done) and Czisny (22nd: my bomb will never be surpassed!!) missed the mark.

    And then, at Worlds 2013, with the Olympics coming around the corner, chanting "3 spots! 3 spots!," the new dawn of US Ladies' skating, veteran Ashley Wagner (5th: respectable) and the child of destiny, Gracie Gold (6th: not bad for a rookie) shattered the curse and gained 3 spots at the Olympics and Worlds for the next team of US Ladies!

    Can I get an Amen? Can I get an Amen?

    Well done, Ashley and Gracie! May the US Ladies always hang on to three spots! And while we have them, lets sweep the podium like in 1991 Yamaguchi (1), Harding (2), Kerrigan (3).

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    I don't see any country ever sweeping the podium like the US did back then. It was nice to have not just one but two contenders for the podium something we came to expect for a long time here in the US. Ashley and Gracie did show guts to get that 3rd spot back you could see it meant a lot to Ashley.

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    Congratulations Ashley and Gracie for getting the job done!!!! May you both get on the podium very soon!

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    I'm glad that there's a thread for this. Ashley and Gracie totally beat the odds this year. It was one of the most competitive and well-skated worlds in recent memory. The only skater that got past them that they could have possibly beat was Murakami, amazing that they were both ahead of all of Tuktamysheva, Sotnikova, Leonova, Suzuki. A big congrats and thank you to both of them for finally getting it done!

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    Some of the people they beat this time could easily beat them on another day. So 3 spots may not be the "new norm". The ladies may not do this well next time. But that's what makes international competition exciting to me. There are a lot of ladies who deserve anywhere from 3 thru 12 at Worlds/Olys.

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    Will Ashley and Gracie be appearing on an aircraft carrier?
    To think that fun is simple fun, while earnest things are earnest, proves all too plain that neither one thou truthfully discernest.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammers View Post
    I don't see any country ever sweeping the podium like the US did back then. It was nice to have not just one but two contenders for the podium something we came to expect for a long time here in the US. Ashley and Gracie did show guts to get that 3rd spot back you could see it meant a lot to Ashley.
    When you think of it, it was a huge miracle the one time the U.S did it. It required Ito to be badly injured twice in the same event (that was the only way she could skate poorly enough to lose to Kerrigan's so so performances with serious mistakes and lacking technical content at those Worlds).

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    Quote Originally Posted by taf2002 View Post
    Some of the people they beat this time could easily beat them on another day. So 3 spots may not be the "new norm". The ladies may not do this well next time. But that's what makes international competition exciting to me. There are a lot of ladies who deserve anywhere from 3 thru 12 at Worlds/Olys.
    Yes, 3 spots for Worlds is not going to be so "given" like in the Kwan era. Still, having 3 girls going for it is easier than having just 2. Looking back, Zhang in 2009 could have helped, so would Nagasu in 2011. Perhaps Wagner could have helped in 2010 since Worlds wasn't that strong that year, but Nagasu herself was actually a downgrade away from the medal. Funnily enough, even if US had kept having 3 spots all these years, they probably couldn't have done it last year, with Czisny's injury and Zawadzki's inconsistent skating.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dufusyte View Post
    [spoiler alert, for those who have not yet watched Worlds 2013, or the preceding 5 years]
    "I hit him with my shoes... if he had given me the medal like I told him to, I wouldn't have had to hit him!" -- 8-year-old Rhoda Penmark in "The Bad Seed"

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dufusyte View Post
    Czisny (22nd: my bomb will never be surpassed!!)
    This competition was just so, so tragic. I have never heard of someone falling on all but one jump in the LP and also getting 5 points in deductions. Maybe it has happened to a lower ranked skater but someone of her caliber, it's just unheard of.

    I'm wondering how she was doing in practices just prior to WC and if there was any indication she should have dropped out.

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    Since this thread is in regards to Ashley and Gracie, what do you think they need to do to move up onto the podium??

    I think Ashley needs to put her 3-spots mission behind her and just concentrate on herself for the coming Olympic season. She needs to pace herself, select a 3-3 jumping pass and just work it into her programs from the get-go (or perhaps a 3-3 sequence). She also needs to concentrate on achieving Lv4 on all her non-jump elements regularly. She seemed to be on track to do that by the GPF last December, but she started to lose steam with the hip pointer, food poisoning, etc. She is not a balletic ice princess and can't compete with Asada or Kostner in that way, but she would do well to take a lesson from Ando or Rochette, who weren't balletic princesses either but kind of muscled their way onto the podium by technically working the hell out of CoP and not giving away anything. Joannie got a true lutz towards the end of her career, and would do a 3-3 sequence to get points. I wonder if Ashley could finally achieve that.

    I think Gracie could go far with a Kwan-like '96 transformation. BTW, Who will do her choreography this year? And perhaps she should start to back-load a bit more in both the SP and LP as she gets more confidence. I also wonder if she could even up the ante by revisiting a 3f-1l-3sal or even a 3x. There are videos of her landing the 3x in practice.

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    Ashley and Gracie were lucky so many girls bombed at this years worlds and had so many mistakes!

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    ^Like who?

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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    ^Like who?
    How about Kaetlyn Osmond, Akiko, all 3 russians. All skaters that bombed in either the short or long where they could have beaten the Americans.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FunnyBut View Post
    I'm glad that there's a thread for this. Ashley and Gracie totally beat the odds this year. It was one of the most competitive and well-skated worlds in recent memory. The only skater that got past them that they could have possibly beat was Murakami, amazing that they were both ahead of all of Tuktamysheva, Sotnikova, Leonova, Suzuki. A big congrats and thank you to both of them for finally getting it done!


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    Quote Originally Posted by sk8ingcoach View Post
    How about Kaetlyn Osmond, Akiko, all 3 russians. All skaters that bombed in either the short or long where they could have beaten the Americans.
    First of all, I wouldn't say that Sotnikova and Osmond 'bombed'. Sotnikova had 3 or 4 UR's, didn't get a full level on a spin and missed a combo. She seemed happy enough after her performances and stayed off her bottom. Osmond fell x2 in her LP and had the performance of her life in the SP, so that again wasn't a disaster. Tuk had 2 grave errors in her SP, but was reasonably clean in the LP. Suzuki had a UR and small step-out in the SP, but I admit her LP was one to forget. However, her SB and Wagner's SB were both around 190 pts. and Wagner w/ mistakes at the GPF beat Suzuki w/ mistakes at the GPF. And Leonova would've beaten them, too? LOL

    And, if you are going to assume that Osmond, Sotnikova, Tuk, Leonova and Suzuki wouldn't bomb and all would finish ahead of both Wagner and Gold, you would have to also take into consideration that neither Wagner nor Gold were clean themselves. Wagner missed levels on several of her non-jump elements, missed a GOE opportunity on her SP jump combo (the Rippon toe was a strategic move by Wagner and got some extra points), got a UR and fell x1 herself in the LP. Gold had a UR, screwed up a spin, obtained 2 edge calls, had a turn out and 2 step-outs in the LP.

    So, be fair. It may have been closer but to say they were 'lucky' and that all of the above would've passed them by is really silly.

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    It's just Akiko who really performed worse than expected, and maybe Tuk, but she would not have passed Ashley.

    If both those skaters had skated the competition of their lives, Gracie would have had to step it up. But I have to think her PCS keeps her ahead of Tuk because she's covering about 30% more ice than Tuk.

    Not sure where Kira would have placed. Hope she heals!!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coco View Post
    It's just Akiko who really performed worse than expected, and maybe Tuk, but she would not have passed Ashley.

    If both those skaters had skated the competition of their lives, Gracie would have had to step it up. But I have to think her PCS keeps her ahead of Tuk because she's covering about 30% more ice than Tuk.

    Not sure where Kira would have placed. Hope she heals!!


    Yeah, Akiko could have easily beaten Ashley and Gracie with a skate like she did at NHK and most the season!

    I am not a fan of tuks skating but I have to say that I think that if Tuk had skated clean her program components are better than Gracies.
    Gracies programs are horrible and compared to Tuk she would be lower in all the Program components except for maybe skating skills.

    I think based on most the results this season she would have definitely been top ten, assuming she wouldn't have mad a total melt down like most of the ladies!

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    Could've, would've, should've and if are words people like to throw around for those that didn't get the job done. Nice to think about to make you feel better, but reality is it didn't happen and Ashley and Gracie did enough to place 5th and 6th.

    The ice is slippery and on any given day the results could change, but that doesn't change or belittle what they accomplished IMO.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    I think Ashley needs to put her 3-spots mission behind her and just concentrate on herself for the coming Olympic season.
    I'm sure she will. She already met that goal, of course it is time to move on to the next.

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