Well, her basics aren't great and her performance/interpretation ability is low. I'd put her basics and interpretive ability behind those of Wagner, Gold, Nagasu, Zawadski, Gao, Cain, Wang, Miller, Edmunds, Chen, even Flatt and Cesario (except Hicks has better speed than those two). She only has the jumps and if they fail her, not much else.
I think you are lumping her bladework and her interpretive ability together. Some skaters with good stretch and line actually dont have great bladework. Cough...Wagner...cough
Last edited by jlai; 11-28-2013 at 04:19 AM.
Hicks does have explosive jumps, but they do look a little like they are a wing and prayer some times. IMHO she needs to spend some time with an ice dance coach.
A good rant is cathartic. Ranting is what keeps me sane. They always come from a different place. Take the prime minister, for example. Sometimes when I rant about him, I am angry; other times, I am just severely annoyed - it's an important distinction. - Rick Mercer
I saw some improvements by Courtney in terms of choreography and expression at the recent Ice Challenge. The edges in her footwork looked deeper and more secure, too.
Is it top tier yet? No, but she's definitely putting the effort in.
Even if she misses a jump, she's still the only top U.S. lady attempting 7 triples repeating the Lutz and the flip. With two double Axels as well, she's basically maxing out her difficulty.
The choreograph sequence definitely needs work, but I didn't find her flying catchfoot camel unattractive.
I expect to see even more improvement by Nationals think she has a real shot at the Olympic team.
Hicks reminds me of Surya in a lot of respects, just better than Surya. To the very least, Surya made some interpretation attempts at her music though...
"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
On Franchesca Chiera - it was a delightfully pleasant surprise to see the rise of a fresh face and exciting story (jump from Novice to Senior). Watched her Free program, which was thoughtfully isolated and pitched on the video page of the Icenetwork coverage and enjoyed her energy. BUT was quite struck by the construction/jump content. Almost all of her jumps were of the 'toe' variety (toe/flip/lutz). There was a double axel but otherwise no edge jumps. Obviously, skaters can have preferences and/or 'nemesis' jumps (e.g., Kristi Y only ever delivered a clean triple salchow apparently when when she won US Nationals in 1992) but still, why no loop? no salchow?
It 'worked' for her just fine. Base value for flip and lutz being what they are and all that, but was curious to know if she had in her arsenal what are considered (given lower base values) less difficult triples.
(She had a Salchow in her FS earlier in the season.)
Courtney Hicks does not bother me much. I saw her live at 2011 Nationals. Her basic skating skills are in the top tier among the current crop of US ladies (which is not necessarily high praise) and superior to Agnes Zawadzki and Gracie Gold. (Flatt and Cesario's skating skills cannot be mentioned in the same breath. Skating skills are not jumps.) She is very fast and aggressive. Her stroking is efficient and effortless. Her knees are soft. (She has a pair of the better knees in US ladies.) Her edges are secure. In her junior programs she routinely did a lot of transitions and did them well. She has substantially improved her posture since she returned to competition after taking one year off due to major injury. True, she pays no attention to the music and most of the time skate right through the highs and lows, twists and turns. Take points off her IN score. But I disagree with the assertion that her skating skills are not good.
Last edited by Jun Y; 11-30-2013 at 03:45 AM.
Well Jenny and Dave did an analysis of Courtney's skating skill in a TSL video and they gave Courtney something like a 4.5 for skating skills...
Kiri Baga's official site has been redesigned - here is the new link to her recent journal entries (her move to Boston this past summer, her enjoyable Cup of Nice trip, etc.): http://figureskatersonline.com/kiribaga/site/journal/
Last edited by Sylvia; 11-30-2013 at 03:30 PM.
Courtney was judged as low as 5.5 at Skate Canada, and as high as 6.75 for SS. Gracie ranged from 7.25 to 8.5 on SS at the same event. A 1.75 difference; the judges are sending the message to Courtney.