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Your favorite US nationals ladies champion during 1981-1995

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by Vash01, Jan 13, 2013.

Your favorite US Nationals ladies champion, 1981-1995?

Poll closed Mar 14, 2013.
  1. 1995 Nicole Bobek

    19 vote(s)
  2. 1993 Nancy Kerrigan

    3 vote(s)
  3. 1992 Kristi Yamaguchi

    55 vote(s)
  4. 1991 Tonya Harding

    12 vote(s)
  5. 1987, 89, 90- Jill Trenary

    7 vote(s)
  6. 1986,88-Debbie Thomas

    12 vote(s)
  7. 1985- Tiffany Chin

    6 vote(s)
  8. 1982, 83,84- Roslyn Sumners

    1 vote(s)
  9. 1981- Elaine Zayak

    2 vote(s)
  1. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Yuzuru, Medvedeva, T&M, Shibs, P&C

    Looking at the pre-Michelle era, but not too far back (starting after the 1980 Olympics, and ending before Kwan's first US title), who is your favorite US nationals champion?

    Looking back, this was quite an accomplished group of ladies- Five world champions among them. Everyone won at least one world medal.
  2. AliasJohnDoe

    AliasJohnDoe Headcase Addict

    I liked them all for different reasons.

    The two I really enjoyed watching and were personal favorites: Nicole Bobek and Tiffany Chin.

    I wish Caryn Kadavy would have won a title a some point also.
  3. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Yuzuru, Medvedeva, T&M, Shibs, P&C

    Me too. Also Angela Nikodinov.
  4. BigB08822

    BigB08822 Well-Known Member

    Tough but I went with Yamaguchi. It was her or Bobek but Bobek just never could keep it together.
  5. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    It's Debi Thomas, btw (my pick). Although, Kristi was very good too and even better when she turned pro. Nicole had it all in terms of ability, but she lacked discipline and really needed help with perfecting her technique on jumps. Then, I'd say Tonya, Tiffany, and Cadavy. Jill Trenary was a beautiful skater when she had it together. Kerrigan was a very athletic skater and looked beautiful on the ice, but she never really put it all together until 1994 Olympics, by which time the judges were in love with Oksana's precocious artistry.
    TheIronLady and (deleted member) like this.
  6. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    The greatest and most accomplished skater was Kristi Yamaguchi by a large margin, but my favorite was definitely Debi Thomas. Athletic and technically supberb, but with great basics and a wonderful line on the ice, an original bold style of skating, and very well rounded in that she was good at figures, had excellent spins with great positiong and centering, explosive jumps, and good footwork.
    TheIronLady and (deleted member) like this.
  7. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    Not to mention she was an amazing student at the time, went on to an amazing career as a doctor, and had a great and interesting personality on and off the ice. She had a wonderful professional career too, even if a relatively short one, winning 3 World Pro titles, and being a superstar of Stars on Ice for the quad. I so wish she had put it all together and won the 88 Olympics and Worlds, both titles were sitting there waiting for her to take.
  8. AndyWarhol

    AndyWarhol Well-Known Member

    Nicole Bobek
  9. kwanette

    kwanette Fetalized since 1998

    It was a toss up for me between Kristi and Tiffany Chin. I adored the latter.
  10. briancoogaert

    briancoogaert Well-Known Member

    Kristi 1992 !
    One of her best performance ever. Amazing !
  11. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Yuzuru, Medvedeva, T&M, Shibs, P&C

    Thanks for the correction to the spelling of her name. I always forget whether she spells it with b or bb.

    BTW it's Kadavy;)

    I never found Kerrigan artistic, not even at the 1994 Olympics. She was a technical skater, IMO, and not always consistent, but she benefitted from the rest of the field not being consistent either. She did put it together technically at the 1994 Oly (the 2f instead of 3f was a minor mistake, in my eyes), but artistically she could not come close to Oksana who was not only a natural, but also expressed deep emotions on the ice.
  12. lulu

    lulu New Member

    Well said. :) Debi was an amazing skater and incredibly accomplished both on and off the ice.

    My own personal favorites are Tonya Harding and Debi Thomas, followed by Kristi Yamaguchi. :) Although as you mentioned, Kristi is certainly the most accomplished skater on the list.
  13. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Yuzuru, Medvedeva, T&M, Shibs, P&C

    Debi was the first black skater to win a winter Olympic medal. She was definitely a pioneer, and an incredibly intelligent woman who went to medical school after a short but successful pro career, and is a practising physician now.
  14. Alex Forrest

    Alex Forrest Banned Member

    I voted and realized it was for US Champion and not US Champion *performance*. (I voted Jill Trenary 1990 out of all those performances). I agree 100% with Judge Judy. Debi was probably my favorite US Champ during that period, I just didn't like her winning programs in 86 and 88 compared to others in this poll. Obviously Kristi with a 7 triple program was high on the list, but she didn't seem to find herself skatingwise until she turned pro, she was too cookie cutter. Harding was a good call, but she had not style, yes, she had 'presentation', but she had no style IMO.

    And I'm sorry, if someone pays for hair and makeup ala Miss Universe and is put in a $15,000 Vera Wang dress, I guess that skater would suddenly be deemed 'artistic'. Never bought it or those chiclets. She was last on my list here. Bobek was second last here too. She had such scratchy and basically NO technique, I could barely watch her. Bobek was the exact opposite of Bonaly. Bonaly was all jumps and no skating skills, and well Nicole, you get the picture. But both were barely watchable to me for different and similar reasons.

    I'd guess my favorite US champions during that time were: Thomas (first black), Chin (first Asian American), Trenary, Yamaguchi, Harding/Sumners, Zayak, Bobek, and Kerrigan.
  15. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    Whether one agrees with the perception or not, the perception at the time Kerrigan was in her prime from 1991-1994 was that she was a very artistic skater. That is how she won the bronze and even placed 3rd in the LP at the 1992 Olympics when she had more mistakes and landed less triples than all of Yamaguchi, Ito, Harding, Bonaly, Preston, and Chen in the LP. That is how she medaled at nearly every Worlds and Olympics for a few years when before the 93-94 season when she finally got her act together (as far as training and consistency) she was a splatty long program who never got past more than 4 triples in a long program ever. The only skaters at the time who were considered better artistically were perhaps Yamaguchi and Bauil. As for the 1994 Olympics, again whether one agrees with it or not, Kerrigan practically tied Bauil on the 2nd mark, with 5 or 6 5.9s and the rest 5.8s for both. The huge controversy about Bauil's win was that she won 3 of her 5 judges based on technical merit, when those 3 judges had them tied artistically.

    Kerrigan like Jill Trenary, is a skater who skating doesnt stand the test of time very well however.

    I was bummed when she retired from pro skating in 1992. I still miss seeing her skate, but amazing to see someone who literally wanted to do it all and had it all, and whose life did not revolve around skating like virtually all of her peers. I got sad when I read some of her stories of racism she had to deal with coming up the ranks when she was younger, but I guess she was the same incredible fighter to keep going and push through all that to the top, as she proved to be in every sense as an adult into the public view many years later.

    Neither Kerrigan or Bobek won Nationals with particularly strong performances, and both capatilized on weak transition years where they had virtually no competition (Kerrigan would have for sure won again in 1994 had she been able to skate, probably with a better performance than 1993).
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2013
  16. TheIronLady

    TheIronLady Well-Known Member

    I think many would disagree. Trenary and Kerrigan are very entertaining and kind of glamorous skaters. I think their programs were from a different aesthetic era, but it's not like the disco programs you see around the time of Anett Potzsch and Linda Fratianne which seem horrid and barely understandable today.
  17. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    I see alot more negative comments regarding Trenary and Kerrigan than positive ones, and opinions that werent held in the day (eg- Kerrigan wasnt an artistic skater) so based on that I would say their skating didnt stand the test of time very well. Rosalynn Sumners is another whose skating didnt seem to stand the test of time very well.
  18. TheIronLady

    TheIronLady Well-Known Member

    I think overly negative comments about Kerrigan and Trenary are superficial and partly made because they fall a lot. I hear positive comments about Kerrigan's jumps. People will compare Agnes' lutz to Kerrigan's.
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2013
  19. TheIronLady

    TheIronLady Well-Known Member

    As for Jill, how can you not appreciate something about her skating? She is a beautiful piece of 1980s jewelry, and notice the speed on her landing edges. If the skaters today studied some of her technical qualities, they might surpass the generic and rise faster.

    Jill Trenary 1986 U.S. Olympic Festival FS

    Jill Trenary 1988 Olympics SP
  20. victoriaheidi

    victoriaheidi New Member

    I had a hard time picking on this one, so I went with the first one that really stuck out to me: Nicole Bobek. Sorry that she couldn't get her $#!+ together.

    I love everyone on the list, though. Well, almost everyone.
  21. TheIronLady

    TheIronLady Well-Known Member

    I think it's good that Tiffany Chin has gotten some votes. As this 1986 fluff piece shows, she was good until her mother decided to make her undergo unhelpful chiropractic and Eastern medicine.

  22. NadineWhite

    NadineWhite Well-Known Member

    This one was tough, because organically I automatically wanted to vote for Tonya, but then I thought of Nicole, who imho is the only one on the list that embodies both gorgeous natural artistry & presentation with fabulous technical precision when she was on. In fact she's always been on par with Oksana imho, and that's saying a lot because Oksana is the prototype for me.

    BUT if I *had* to choose Tonya would be it for me. Why you say? :D (whom I talking to here, mysef?). :confused::lol: Of course it's because of the 3axel, and the excitement, passion, fight, and suspence she brought to the scene. You knew if her thighs were big she wasn't going to hit, but if they were lean, meaning, and a fighting machine she was going to go out there and put on a show for the whole audience. It brings to mind what Peggy Fleming said once during a broadcast, about how if she had to choose between the jumps & artistry when it came to watching a skater's program, she would choose the jumps because of the excitement it brought. That's exacty how I feel. There's nothing like it. Time to put it all on the line. Do or die. Or as Eminem so eloquently put it:


    Look, if you had one shot, or one opportunity
    To seize everything you ever wanted in one moment
    Would you capture it or just let it slip?

    His palms are sweaty, knees weak, arms are heavy
    There's vomit on his sweater already, mom's spaghetti
    He's nervous, but on the surface he looks calm and ready to drop bombs,
    But he keeps on forgetting what he wrote down,
    The whole crowd goes so loud
    He opens his mouth, but the words won't come out
    He's choking how, everybody's joking now
    The clock's run out, time's up over, bloah!
    Snap back to reality, Oh there goes gravity
    Oh, there goes Rabbit, he choked
    He's so mad, but he won't give up that
    Easy, no
    He won't have it, he knows his whole back's to these ropes
    It don't matter, he's dope
    He knows that but he's broke
    He's so stagnant, he knows
    When he goes back to his mobile home, that's when it's
    Back to the lab again, yo
    This whole rhapsody
    He better go capture this moment and hope it don't pass him

    You better lose yourself in the music, the moment
    You own it, you better never let it go
    You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
    This opportunity comes once in a lifetime yo
    You better lose yourself in the music, the moment
    You own it, you better never let it go
    You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
    This opportunity comes once in a lifetime yo
    (You better)

    The soul's escaping, through this hole that is gaping
    This world is mine for the taking
    Make me king, as we move toward a new world order
    A normal life is boring, but superstardom's close to post mortem
    It only grows harder, only grows hotter
    He blows us all over these hoes is all on him
    Coast to coast shows, he's known as the globetrotter
    Lonely roads, God only knows
    He's grown farther from home, he's no father
    He goes home and barely knows his own daughter
    But hold your nose 'cause here goes the cold water
    His hoes don't want him no more, he's cold product
    They moved on to the next schmoe who flows
    He nose dove and sold nada
    So the soap opera is told and unfolds
    I suppose it's old partner but the beat goes on
    Da da dum da dum da da


    No more games, I'ma change what you call rage
    Tear this mother****ing roof off like two dogs caged
    I was playing in the beginning, the mood all changed
    I've been chewed up and spit out and booed off stage
    But I kept rhyming and stepped right into the next cypher
    Best believe somebody's paying the pied piper
    All the pain inside amplified by the fact
    That I can't get by with my 9 to 5
    And I can't provide the right type of life for my family
    Cause man, these goddamn food stamps don't buy diapers
    And it's no movie, there's no Mekhi Phifer, this is my life
    And these times are so hard, and it's getting even harder
    Trying to feed and water my seed, plus
    Teeter totter caught up between being a father and a prima donna
    Baby mama drama's screaming on and
    Too much for me to wanna
    Stay in one spot, another day of monotony
    Has gotten me to the point, I'm like a snail
    I've got to formulate a plot or I end up in jail or shot
    Success is my only mother****ing option, failure's not
    Mom, I love you, but this trailer's got to go
    I cannot grow old in Salem's lot
    So here I go it's my shot.
    Feet fail me not, this may be the only opportunity that I got


    You can do anything you set your mind to, man
  23. blue_idealist

    blue_idealist Well-Known Member

    I voted for Nicole Bobek since I used to love her. I was totally in love with her 1999 pro LP to '70s music.
  24. Alex Forrest

    Alex Forrest Banned Member

    i'm going back on track with the subject. If Chin had realized her potential, no one would know Debi Thomas. Chin was a world apart until Marjorie screwed things up. Then Debi basically had a free ride to Calgary, minus that whole Trenary 87 mess at Nats. Jill always talked about the lion and the mouse, well, she was always the mouse. Jill was quite lucky that Debi had Organic exams while she was off spraying her hair with Aquanet.
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2013
  25. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    I loved Chin's skating but her own decline aside I think Trenary, Kadavy, and Thomas all just passed her by. At the 86 Nationals she skated a clean short and was still well beaten by both Thomas and Kadavy. Then she skated a simplified long, but still pretty clean with 2 triples, and Kadavy who only made 2 of her own triples clean easily beat her (and nearly a 5 triple Thomas which just shows Kadavy f-ed up her big chance to win Nationals and gains some momentum in the U.S ranks). At the 87 Nationals she skated clean figures and a clean short and was only 4th in figures, and 3rd in the short only since Kadavy bombed her short. Trenary took 2nd with a triple flip combo, but probably could have even done a triple toe combo just like Chin and still beaten a clean Chin. She was quite possibly the best free skater at the 84 Olympics and sadly figures and a lack of international rep kept her (probably unfairly) from a medal, and she looked like the future of U.S skating. However she blew her big chance to win Worlds in 85, and even a chance to win Worlds in 86, and from there even without her problems she probably was just swallowed up by the depth of U.S women.
  26. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Yuzuru, Medvedeva, T&M, Shibs, P&C

    Elaine Zayak was a trailblazer- the first skater to land 6 clean triples in a program! I am surprised that she did not get any votes at all.

    Nicole would have been quite low on my list; she wasted such a great talent! She was good enough to win the world championship, but all she could do was a bronze medal at worlds. She was one of the most charming skaters on the ice. Was it Peggy that called her 'Marilyn on ice'?

    Although I voted for Kristi (mainly because of her stellar career afterwards, and her great skate at the nationals when she finally won the title), I think Debie Thomas is a very deserving lady to get my vote.

    If not for the scandal, I think Tonya would have gotten a lot more votes. She too was a trailblazer in the USA- first US lady to land a triple axel.
  27. mikemba

    mikemba Active Member

    I agree. Although Nancy was certainly a good skater, I thought she had some extremely awkward moments in all her programs, including the 1994 Olympics: her layback spin always looked stiff, unattractvie, and painful, and she could not curve her arms gracefully. Almost all of her choreography included straight arms, and when she did try to curve them it was rather unattractive. Even her 1994 Olympic LP had some poorly executed choreography, especially when she glided backwards on 2 feet while thrusting her arms out at the sides.

    I disagree on one point, though: I didn't even think Nancy's 94 Olympic LP was that strong technically, (but neither was Oksana's). In the best performance of her life Nancy completed only 5 triples with no flip and only one lutz. She was a bit of a technical disapointment after the many 6 or 7 triple jump programs executed by the likes of Midori, Surya, Kristi, and Tonya.

    Kristi got my vote on the poll: she combined everything, and was very consistent. I also find it interesting that so many people here who like Kristi also like Tiffany so much. Tiffany was my all-time favorite until Kristi came along, and Kristi has been my favorite ever since.
  28. briancoogaert

    briancoogaert Well-Known Member

    I agree that Nancy Kerrigan is not an "artistic" skater, but her presentation was exactly what we wait from a total package. I found her elegant.
  29. mikemba

    mikemba Active Member

    I was always surprised by that at the time. I never understood why Nancy was considered artistic, since she had an awful lot of upper body problems. In my case, it's not that her artistry didn't stand the test of time, it was that I never found her very artistic when I watched her back then. The only thing I thought of at that time was that people considered her an artist mainly because she was much less athletic than - but only slightly more artistic than -- Tonya and Midori. I think it was an effort to pit the "athletes" against the "artists" and Nancy was included with the artists, particularly by pro-United States media.
    gkelly and (deleted member) like this.
  30. FunnyBut

    FunnyBut Well-Known Member

    I voted for Kristi. There much to like about each of the ladies, but Kristi had by far the most memorable career, amateur and pro. She also appeared as an ambassador for the sport for years after she retired, had that great run on DWTS, she is the figure-skating gift that keeps giving :lol:

    But for the best Nationals single performance, it's definitely Tonya Harding 1991. A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. I've watched it so many times over the years, still I find it incredible and exciting.