The Knierims have switched coaches from Sappenfield to ... Aljona Savchenko!

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Unless they somehow end up getting beaten at U.S. Nationals. Which I don't think would happen - but weirder things have happened.

Best of luck to the Knierims. I was a bit surprised at this news - I was under the impression that Alexa and Chris would never leave Delilah - but I think this change will be for the better. I think Aljona should help them with packaging their programs and nailing their elements better.
Tarah and Danny beat them by almost 15 points in 2016. Also they only won this year by 6, not a high margin considering Tarah and Danny weren't perfect and were coming off major injury. They shouldn't be thinking that they are unbeatable at Nationals. If they can't land those jumps a clean program with less difficulty will be able to do it
 
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mattiecat13

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I thought Tarah and Danny should have beaten them at Nationals this year. It was pretty much a given the Knierims were going to get the lone Olympic spot based on body of work but I hope the judges judge was is actually put on the ice next season.
 

skatepixie

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*sings* Bye, bye, bye....Delilah!

I think this is a good move for them -- and Aliona has worked miracles in the past with Bruno. If anyone can get the Knierims landing jumps, well, she can...
 

AxelAnnie

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My first thought was Whoo Hoo! Next thought....the sweet and charming couple are going to be eaten alive by Aljona. Then I realized..................what was I thinking? Kiernan She is one strong woman............look at what she has been through. That is one strong woman! And He kiernan is no slouch either.

This will be a match made in heaven.
 

DimaToe

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It seems like the Empress didn’t want to be bored after retirement so she wanted to take on a Challenge :p Great move by the Knierims. Montreal was already going to be over packed, Likely the same with Zimmerman’s camp after J/C’s world medal. I’m very excited to see how this all goes.
 

cocotaffy

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Great move, I can't wait to see what comes out of this partnership. Who better than Aljona if you want to reach the next level and they have excellent qualities. Their SD and smooth glide for one.
 

PRlady

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She's been doing some coaching/consulting the past year and is now going to coach Hocke/Blommeret. Bruno is going back to France to do some coaching as well. Will be interesting to see if they can translate doing to teaching.
As I think Annika Hocke is utterly adorable, I’m really thrilled by this. I hope some goddess is transmitted to the next generation of German pairs.

The Knirems are already well along in their careers but Aliona herself is proof that’s it’s never too late to change things.
 

Skittl1321

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Yes, she (and the other coaches) needs to be a member of USFS and the PSA, purchase the PSA liability insurance, pass the annual background check (done through a USFS vendor) and complete CERs (online classes consisting of reading material/Power Points and a quiz) in order to be credentialed at a U.S. comp. Rinks have their own policies but most require the full USFS certification.
This is just to be with them at competitions. If a rink allows it, anyone can coach (though surely she'd want insurance...)

The main hurdle is a US work visa.
 

Quadjump

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These are stunning news. I just cannot see Aljona to come back on the ice now. But they will clearify this on thursday. I think Bruno told her that his decision to retire is totally irrevocably.

Alexander König will move to Berlin (Maybe he has already moved). He will definitly not be part of the coaching Team in Obersdorf (but Bruno? Someone mentioned him to move back to France with his pregnagnt fiance). Nevertheless this is an incredible start for Aljona as a coach. Seems like the Knierims bet everything on the same horse to maximize their potential for 2022. They have a lot of potential but struggled a lot with their jumps.

I just can imagine Aljona´s coaching style. I think she will put all her effort into her students including willpower, ambition and harshness.
 

Spiralgraph

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Wow I didn't expect this news at all. But it proves the Knierims took their sub par performances at Worlds and the Olympics very seriously and want to prove to everyone and perhaps themselves too, that they are better skaters than what they have done so far.
Now if a few more US pairs show this kind of gutsy commitment to improve, I'll be even happier than I am now.
 
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rfisher

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Congrats on your future Four Continents Title and World/Grand Prix Final medals
As long as none of the Chinese teams show up at Four Continents, maybe. :lol: There is an outside chance they might get a GP medal. Maybe. But, Sappenfield left the building years ago in regard to producing winning teams. So, maybe....
 

eurodance2001

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As long as none of the Chinese teams show up at Four Continents, maybe. :lol: There is an outside chance they might get a GP medal. Maybe. But, Sappenfield left the building years ago in regard to producing winning teams. So, maybe....
She is the pairs version of Tom Z and Christy Krall.. Actually the whole C.S. coaching situation.. Kinda blah and students (with a few exceptions here and there) whom I don't think we've ever seen them to their full potential. Tammy Gambill should fit in perfectly then :rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes::rolleyes:
 

clairecloutier

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As long as none of the Chinese teams show up at Four Continents, maybe. :lol: There is an outside chance they might get a GP medal. Maybe. But, Sappenfield left the building years ago in regard to producing winning teams. So, maybe....
Alexa/Chris already have 4CCs and GP medals. Not from last season, mind you, but they've been there before, and could be again. We'll see.
 

julieann

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Good for them! It's hard to make a change but a disappointing individual Olympics and Worlds probably made them think, either retire or really make a big change. No one can help them more right now than Aliona.
 

AYS

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Wow. For some reason I thought it almost certain Knierims were retiring based on their interviews at/directly after Pyeongchang (and had actually assumed same for S/M). But, it's a fascinating move. I really look forward to seeing what changes this will bring to their skating.
 

Sylvia

U.S. Regionals are underway: 6 down, 3 to go!
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^^^ Caydee first toured with Holiday on Ice in Europe last fall and winter (I think she's back in Florida now).

Are Aliona and Bruno doing the Holiday on Ice winter tour? It is quite a schedule!
Selected dates so far for S/M: https://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/th...on-ice-keep-options-open.103886/#post-5363985

ETA: Savchenko/Massot's Jan. 24 scheduled tour date in Stuttgart is the same day as the Championship Pairs SP at 2019 U.S. Nationals in Detroit. Pairs FS is on Jan. 26.
 
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Atreugal

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U.S. Figure Skating announces that Alexa Scimeca-Knierim and Chris Knierim have left Dalilah Sappenfield and will now train part of the time with Alexander König and Jean-Francois Ballester (Aliona Savchenko & Bruno Massot's coaches) in Oberstdorf as well as in Chicago. Savchenko will join them in Chicago
Good move. I'm just curious about the training expenses. Is the US federation supporting this endeavor?
 

Skittl1321

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Good move. I'm just curious about the training expenses. Is the US federation supporting this endeavor?
Wouldn't you assume they are supporting them in the same way they always have? Athletes receive funding based on their envelope, as national champions they are envelope A tier 2. The US doesn't even pay for most domestic training.

I wonder if they will be able to get permits to work (such as coaching younger students) in Germany.
 

Josh78

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Wonderful move for them, and I really hope it pays dividends (I think it will for sure)...If Alexa and Chris feel they could still improve and didn't want to leave the performances they gave this year as the last note on their career, I say good on them for having the desire to prove they are better than that! I also get the impression that, with everything they have been through in their careers (in different ways) that Aliona and Alexa will end up having a "kindred spirit" sort of relationship, which will really help in the transition to a new teaching method/choreographic mindset -- I'm excited for them!
 

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