Ottavio Cinquanta has died

Sylvia

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FISG press release today (July 18, 2022):

"A day of mourning for the Italian Ice Sports Federation : at 83 , Ottavio Cinquanta left us. Born on August 15, 1938 in Rome, Cinquanta was undoubtedly one of the most important figures in the history of Italian ice and, more generally, of the entire Italian sports scene.

Ottavio Cinquanta has held, over the decades, a fundamental role in the ranks of the International Skating Union, of which he was a member and President of the Technical Committee from 1975 to 1992, then Vice President from 1992 to 1994 and finally President from 1994 to 2016."

His wikipedia page: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ottavio_Cinquanta
 
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Louis

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Will god and the saints judge him by majority ordinal or OBO? :lol: Hopefully a flip-flop in ordinals won't send him to purgatory :lol: (Sorry if that's in poor taste.)

Cinquanta was stubborn, clueless, and incompetent, but I do think he (eventually) got the sport into a better place with the international judging system. As flawed as it is, and as controversial as it was, it has stood the test of time.

RIP.
 

Carolla5501

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The man is dead there’s no need to act hateful

Feeling the need to trash talk a deceased person, says more about you than them. Wonder what people say about you when you pass on.
 
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Bouffantrex

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Didn't they pretty much do that to kill the pro skating going on at the time?

Ding ding ding! The GP was created to cash in on the professional opportunities while keeping skaters competing in ISU comps.
Incorrect. The inaugural Grand Prix was in '95, and pro skating continued to flourish until '98. The death knell for professional skating was largely due to oversaturation, the increasingly inferior quality of skating and events, plus a changing television landscape. The creation of the Grand Prix Series was vital to grow the sport, and the fact it continues to endure 25+ years later is testament to that fact.
 
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tony

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Incorrect. The inaugural Grand Prix was in '95, and pro skating continued to flourish until '98. The death knell for professional skating was largely due to oversaturation, the increasingly inferior quality of skating and events, plus a changing television landscape. The creation of the Grand Prix Series was vital to grow the sport, and the fact it continues to endure 25+ years later is testament to that fact.
Well, not really. In the fall of 1998 the ISU took over/created 10 pro-am competitions, including the World Pros, and skaters like Butyrskaya were doing everything. I mean, Nikodinov was doing Challenge of Champions (a previously fairly prestigious event) and she hadn’t even been to Worlds yet. I think maybe Ice Wars was the only totally pro competition that season. The ISU did this to try to keep skaters Olympic-eligible following Nagano. By 1999, some of these events returned to pro only but most just disappeared completely.
 

Louis

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Yeah, I'm with tony. Cinquanta was famously quoted as saying (paraphrasing), "we'll create more Oksana Baiuls" in response to her decision to turn pro. And, true to his word, Oksana Baiul was the last real champion to have any kind of pro career. The ISU did everything possible to give skaters a reason to stay eligible v. turn professional. To be clear, I think that's a mostly good thing, and Cinquanta was extremely smart to bring more money and opportunities to eligible skaters. I don't disagree with Bouffrantrex that other factors helped accelerated the death of pro skating, but at the same time, I think it was clear that Cinquanta absolutely wanted to kill pro skating and was successful in doing so. (That's a neutral statement on my part.)
 

Yuri

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I agree than Cinquanta did manage to kill off pro skating by adding prize money to Olympic-eligible events in establishing the Grand Prix Series and Finals. Certainly skaters like Grishuk & Platov had much more incentive to continue in the eligible ranks after they originally were going to turn pro after the 1995 World Championships. Certainly the trend of especially ice dancers remaining eligible to win medals in two or even three Olympic cycles was helped by prize money and I think overall it's a good thing.

While I am not crazy about all of the judging and scoring rules he changed, at least Cinquanta recognized it was ridiculous under the ordinals system for two skaters/teams to flip-flop placements after both had skated due to the scores of a subsequent skater/team. Not only was it unsettling, I believe there was a bit of mischief eliminated under the revised scoring systems.
 

Bouffantrex

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Well, not really. In the fall of 1998 the ISU took over/created 10 pro-am competitions, including the World Pros, and skaters like Butyrskaya were doing everything. I mean, Nikodinov was doing Challenge of Champions (a previously fairly prestigious event) and she hadn’t even been to Worlds yet. I think maybe Ice Wars was the only totally pro competition that season. The ISU did this to try to keep skaters Olympic-eligible following Nagano. By 1999, some of these events returned to pro only but most just disappeared completely.
Indeed. Neglecting to mention that gluttonous 1998 pro-am strategy may have been an intentional omission on my part. 😜 Talk about a gross miscalculation by everyone involved. Clearly by 1998, the viewing public wasn't gagging to watch Angela Nikodinov take on Katarina Witt in a battle of ballads, commentated by the captivatingly clueless Roz Sumners.

To be clear, I think that's a mostly good thing, and Cinquanta was extremely smart to bring more money and opportunities to eligible skaters. I don't disagree with Bouffrantrex that other factors helped accelerated the death of pro skating, but at the same time, I think it was clear that Cinquanta absolutely wanted to kill pro skating and was successful in doing so.
Fair enough. I maintain, unlike others in this discussion, creation of the Grand Prix series was definitively positive for the sport (and continues to be to this day). To say the Grand Prix (and Cinquanta) killed pro skating is an oversimplification of the facts.

Certainly skaters like Grishuk & Platov had much more incentive to continue in the eligible ranks after they originally were going to turn pro after the 1995 World Championships. Certainly the trend of especially ice dancers remaining eligible to win medals in two or even three Olympic cycles was helped by prize money and I think overall it's a good thing.
Yes. And not coincidentally, Grishuk/Platov created their most compelling content from 1996 to 1998, with several programs that are still relevant and revered today. Had they continued to the professional ranks after 1995, I doubt they would have come close to that artistic/technical zenith, and more likely would have been content to make easy money grinding to the latest Madonna single every few months.
 
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Sylvia

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Obituary of ISU Honorary President Ottavio Cinquanta (ITA): https://www.isu.org/isu-news/news/1...sident-ottavio-cinquanta-ita?templateParam=15
During his time at the head of the helm of the ISU, Ottavio had a big impact on ISU sports. He played an essential role in making Short Track Speed Skating an Olympic sport and reformed the ISU Judging System in Figure Skating. He successfully negotiated major media rights contracts which was crucial to the development of skating and in particular helped to establish the currently successful ISU Event calendar with over 40 ISU Events per season.
 

VGThuy

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“Grinding to the latest Madonna singles” sounds like the perfect description of Pasha. And I like her a lot and love Madonna, so I guess that can be construed as a compliment. I’m not sure…:confused:
 

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