Australian skating news

Bunny Hop

Queen of the Workaround
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4,956
I'm sorry for the athletes who'll need to relocate their training, because that's always a hassle, but at least Sydney does have other rinks they can access comparatively easily. The hockey kids and aspiring figure skaters based at Noarlunga rink weren't nearly so lucky.
Fair point, and I agree that compared to other capital cities Sydney is relatively well served for rinks, with five (going down to four) for 5 million people. Penrith and Liverpool are also no longer considered to be outside of Sydney (as they were when I was a child) and are now easier to reach with improved roads.

But once you factor in the notorious Sydney traffic 'comparatively easily' is debatable. Technically I live 25 minutes from the rink where I skate, and 20 minutes from Macquarie, which is actually 5 minutes from where I work. Google Maps says it should take me half an hour to get from my rink to work near Macquarie. In reality it frequently takes me an hour, heading off just before 7am. That's between the two more central rinks in Sydney. So when you're talking about people trying to skate before or after school or work, the additional commuting time to get to or from a rink is much greater than it appears to be. I predict a lot of skaters will quit rather than find an alternative rink because the commute will just not be practical.

Anyway, here's another petition:
Petition 3
 
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misskarne

Handy Emergency Backup Mode
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17,939
Signing them all. It has another effect too, one that won't be as well known. Other cities are fighting to try and get new rinks. How are they supposed to win over their local governments if Sydney is closing them?

And yes, my understanding is that 4CC will effectively be a skate-off for the Worlds spot.
 

essence_of_soy

Well-Known Member
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4,743
Fair point, and I agree that compared to other capital cities Sydney is relatively well served for rinks, with five (going down to four) for 5 million people. Penrith and Liverpool are also no longer considered to be outside of Sydney (as they were when I was a child) and are now easier to reach with improved roads.

But once you factor in the notorious Sydney traffic 'comparatively easily' is debatable. Technically I live 25 minutes from the rink where I skate, and 20 minutes from Macquarie, which is actually 5 minutes from where I work. Google Maps says it should take me half an hour to get from my rink to work near Macquarie. In reality it frequently takes me an hour, heading off just before 7am. That's between the two more central rinks in Sydney. So when you're talking about people trying to skate before or after school or work, the additional commuting time to get to or from a rink is much greater than it appears to be. I predict a lot of skaters will quit rather than find an alternative rink because the commute will just not be practical.
Agreed.

Also, some of the skaters who train at the rink would be too young to drive, and their parents are the ones taking them there. Having attended the national championships as a spectator both at Penrith and Macquarie, from my hotel near Central Station in the middle of Sydney, it took anywhere from 70 to 120 minutes by public transport to get to Penrith, and 60 to 90 minutes to get to Macquarie.

Public transport from Macquarie to the Penrith Ice Palace takes anywhere from 90 to 150 minutes, and vice versa. That could mean enduring up to three connecting points, too.

In terms of access, Penrith is in the middle of an industrial estate, with the nearest bus about 10 minutes away by foot. Whereas, Macquarie is part of a major shopping centre and multiple transport options, too.
 
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Aussie Willy

Hates both vegemite and peanut butter
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22,133
Latest news is AMP have put the plans on hold. Which is a good thing. But now the campaign starts to get them to listen to the needs of the community.
 

mag

Well-Known Member
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10,790
Latest news is AMP have put the plans on hold. Which is a good thing. But now the campaign starts to get them to listen to the needs of the community.
Well if Australia wants a chance at the Olympic team event, closing down the ice dance rink is probably not the best way to go about it. I saw something on social media from Chantelle Kerry about it. I assume that is her home training rink?
 

Aussie Willy

Hates both vegemite and peanut butter
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Well if Australia wants a chance at the Olympic team event, closing down the ice dance rink is probably not the best way to go about it. I saw something on social media from Chantelle Kerry about it. I assume that is her home training rink?
It is her home rink but there are other rinks in Sydney. An Olympic team event is not dependent on one rink. And all the other skaters who potentially could be part of a team event train overseas.
 

essence_of_soy

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4,743
It is her home rink but there are other rinks in Sydney. An Olympic team event is not dependent on one rink. And all the other skaters who potentially could be part of a team event train overseas.
Irrespective of whether our elite athletes train part of the year overseas, the sport is still dependent on getting people started at the grass roots level.

It is well-documented that many of our top skaters are forced to go to the US or Canada, simply because Australia doesn't have enough rinks and ice-time to support their training.

Also, parents are willing to drive only so far to get their kids to training. One less facility will stretch others to capacity and beyond. Meaning, there are only so many hours in a day to schedule costly training time versus public sessions.

Victorian competitive skating suffered for decades because once a rink is gone, it's gone.
 
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Aussie Willy

Hates both vegemite and peanut butter
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22,133
Irrespective of whether our elite athletes train part of the year overseas, the sport is still dependent on getting people started at the grass roots level.

It is well-documented that many of our top skaters are forced to go to the US or Canada, simply because Australia doesn't have enough rinks and ice-time to support their training.

Also, parents are willing to drive only so far to get their kids to training. One less facility will stretch others to capacity and beyond. Meaning, there are only so many hours in a day to schedule costly training time versus public sessions.

Victorian competitive skating suffered for decades because once a rink is gone, it's gone.
I was responding to the comment that because of the rink closing it puts the chance of Australia being able to compete at the team event at risk which is not true. As person who has been involved in the sport for years I am fully aware of the rink situation in Australia and how it impacts on skater development.
 

anonymoose_au

Member
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43
I urge everyone to sign the petitions and write-in! Macquarie Ice Rink is the only rink on the North side of Sydney where I live, if it goes I'll have to give up skating (not that I'm any good, but I love to do it) because it just won't be feasible to go to the other rinks which are up to two hours away.

The owner also recently spent a whole lot of money upgrading the place!

Failing that I call for a skate-in, if the bulldozers come, we shall stand on the ice in our skates and not be moved!
 

essence_of_soy

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It's not been a great 2019 for Alexandrovskaya & Windsor, either. They withdrew last week from Four Continents due to injury. Does anyone know the specifics, and if they will be back in times for the world championships?
 

Orm Irian

Well-Known Member
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282
Oh no, poor Brooklee! That's going to take some time to heal. :(

I read on another thread here that Harley had an ankle injury, but haven't heard any more detail than that. On the good news front, though, Brendan just had a top 10 finish at Four Continents - ninth place, to be precise! Which is awesome in its own right, and also a financial help, because ISA awards a $2,000 incentive payment for placing in the top 50% at FCC which can only be useful. Poor Andrew, though, was unfortunately just the wrong side of the cutoff line...
 

essence_of_soy

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It's so crazy since Andrew began doing dance and all of the extra ice time he needs dedicated just to that, his singles' skating has improved out of this world.
 

essence_of_soy

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Oh no. How disappointing. And the pairs field is so thin this season everyone will automatically qualify for the free skate.
I thought only the top sixteen qualified for the free skate.

Anyway, what a shame. This season was kind of a bust for A & W.
 

starrynight

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1,230
They’ve changed it to the top 20 and there are only 19 pairs for Worlds.

That change to increase the number was in response to the really deep pairs field last season (and a bunch of top fed pairs teams not qualifying). But suddenly all the teams have vanished
 

essence_of_soy

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They’ve changed it to the top 20 and there are only 19 pairs for Worlds.

That change to increase the number was in response to the really deep pairs field last season (and a bunch of top fed pairs teams not qualifying). But suddenly all the teams have vanished
Thanks for this.

Although, maybe it is only a senior level ruling. Only the top sixteen at junior worlds qualified for the free skate earlier this week.

It's still sad to see how difficult a season A & W had. Teams they had beaten at the junior (and senior level) are now overtaking them.
 

insideedgeua

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They’ve changed it to the top 20 and there are only 19 pairs for Worlds.

That change to increase the number was in response to the really deep pairs field last season (and a bunch of top fed pairs teams not qualifying). But suddenly all the teams have vanished
It’s a shame that the ISU didn’t increase the size of the dance field to 24 instead. There’s so much depth there right now.
 

mag

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10,790
Thanks for this.

Although, maybe it is only a senior level ruling. Only the top sixteen at junior worlds qualified for the free skate earlier this week.

It's still sad to see how difficult a season A & W had. Teams they had beaten at the junior (and senior level) are now overtaking them.
It was a difficult season, but sometimes you need short term pain for long term gain. They are training in a great environment and reworking their technique. I assume their goal is 2022. If that is the case, they just need to keep at it.
 

essence_of_soy

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It was a difficult season, but sometimes you need short term pain for long term gain. They are training in a great environment and reworking their technique. I assume their goal is 2022. If that is the case, they just need to keep at it.
I hope you're right, and that they are not discouraged.

Harley's lifts looked good in Sydney at the National Championships last year. His throw technique timing appeared a work in progress.
 

Sylvia

Anticipating the JGP!
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Bunny Hop

Queen of the Workaround
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Update on the Macquarie Ice Rink situation (from the rink's FB page):
Lease extended at Macquarie Ice Rink until January 2021

Statement from Dr Frank Gregg, owner Macquarie Ice Rink

We are delighted with AMP Capital’s decision to extend the lease until January 2021. This gives the Rink’s user groups and the public more certainty for next year.
I thank them for their consideration and cooperation over the last couple of months. We look forward to working with AMP Capital into the future as they continue to work on plans to ensure an Olympic size ice rink is maintained at the Macquarie Centre.

Statement from Mark Kirkland, AMP Capital MD Shopping Centres:
As part of AMP Capital’s engagement with the community about the future of Macquarie Centre, we have been meeting with regular users of the ice rink to better understand their needs. A key issue they have raised is having certainty around whether the current rink will be open next year.
We remain committed to an Olympic-sized ice rink as part of any redevelopment but while we work through options for a more permanent solution for the rink, we are pleased to advise that we are offering to extend the operator’s tenure to 31 January 2021.
We hope this decision brings comfort and assists in planning for their 2020 program.
We’ve been pleased with the level of engagement we’ve had from the community in planning for the next stage of development. We remain committed to creating something great at Macquarie Centre by building a vibrant leisure and entertainment precinct. The development aims to expand night time dining options, improve accessibility to transport services and importantly an Olympic sized ice-rink solution for all users.
We will continue to engage with stakeholders as we work through the detail and will provide further information when we can.
 

Orm Irian

Well-Known Member
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282
Correct me if I am misinterpreting this post. But, it makes no sense to demolish an Olympic sized rink (that has recently been renovated) to build a new one.
I think it's the entire complex that's being redeveloped, not just the rink? I don't know the layout, but depending on the structure it might be quite tricky to demolish/rebuild or renovate the rest of the shopping centre in the way they plan to without taking down the rink as well. Especially if how they can expand their public transport interchange is constrained by needing to access fixed-location elements like train lines.
 

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