U.S. Pairs 2021-22 season - News & Updates, Part X

Cleo1782

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@yeslek Mostly because they do harder SBS jumps than other pairs teams. When they do SBS 3Ts she's generally clean. The troubles come when they try the harder triples like 3Lo - which she does cleanly sometimes but not others. But maybe that's why no other pair's team tries that jump SBS.

They do tend to have more problems with throws and lifts usually.

Have they ever done SBS toes? I can't recall them ever trying those, but I could be wrong. Ashley was always more of an edge jumper even in singles. Tim did SBS toes with DeeDee, but I don't recall Cain/Leduc ever doing them.
 

olympic

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Random Questions -

C/J looked better than normal on the SBS jumps at the John Nicks Challenge according to the protocols. Has their competition schedule changed at all this season?

CG/L - Was it confirmed that she had YKW? I thought it was rumor ... Those marks weren't great from ACI, so is it the consensus that she is in recovery and it is taking time to be back at 100%?

L/M - These 2 are skating well. What is his citizenship status? Meaning, can they represent the US at the Olympics or Worlds? For some reason, I thought he was not a citizen, but maybe I'm confused (?)

More of a comment, L/O seem to be getting wobbly which is depressing because for me, this is a better pairing than K/O. I think she also used to splat regularly when she was paired w/ Brian though.
 

clairecloutier

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CG/L - Was it confirmed that she had YKW? I thought it was rumor ... Those marks weren't great from ACI, so is it the consensus that she is in recovery and it is taking time to be back at 100%?

L/M - These 2 are skating well. What is his citizenship status? Meaning, can they represent the US at the Olympics or Worlds? For some reason, I thought he was not a citizen, but maybe I'm confused (?)

Misha Mitrofanov was born in Madison, WI, and is an American citizen. So no issues there.

Ashley posted on Instagram yesterday that it's been a rough road coming back from CV19. Hopefully she feels better by the time of their GP events.
 

Sylvia

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When they do SBS 3Ts she's generally clean.
Have they ever done SBS toes?
Cain-Gribble/LeDuc have never done sbs 3T that I can recall (and, yes, she preferred edge jumps as a singles skater). In their first season together (2016-17) they were doing sbs 3Lo and 3S in their free skate.

@olympic, Calalang/Johnson have been assigned to Finlandia Trophy (with C-G/L) before Skate America:
Upcoming U.S. pairs assignments before Skate America:

JGP #6 in Gdansk, Poland (Sept. 29-Oct. 2): Smirnova/Siianytsia, Martins/Bedard
JGP #7 in Linz, Austria (Oct. 6-9): Smirnova/Siianytsia, Martins/Bedard, Cate Fleming/Chase Finster (JGP debut)

CS Finlandia Trophy in Espoo, Finland (Oct. 7-10, 2021): Cain-Gribble/LeDuc, Calalang/Jonhson
CS Asian Open Trophy in Beijing (Oct. 13-17): Chan/Howe (their CS debut), Lu/Mitrofanov
 

clairecloutier

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Did Cain-Gribble / LeDuc ever do SBS flips, or am I imagining that?

It was discussed a little bit in this June 2018 interview with them:

FSO: How about side-by-side jumps? Last year, you started the season doing triple flip in the short program. Then you switched to triple loop. Which jump will you use in the short program this season?


LeDuc:
Our plan is to keep the jumps the same as what we did in the second half of the season last year. Because that’s when we started finding our groove and finding better GOE [marks].


Cain:
And with the +5/-5 GOE happening, we’re looking at [triple loop as] a jump that we are very consistent in and very confident in, that we can get big positive GOE on. We do triple flip and triple Lutz every single day; we work on them. But, we’ve competed triple loop and triple Salchow so many times that our bodies know how to do them. And we want to maximize the amount of points, because we’re putting so much into our choreography this year, that we won’t be able to perform the choreography full out [unless] we’re feeling confident on the elements we’re doing. We always still train flip and Lutz and toe loop. Because we don’t ever want to be a team that just stays with what we’ve always done. We want to keep evolving. I think that, as the sport moves forward, you’re going to need triple flip and Lutz, and you’re going to possibly need a triple/triple in pairs. So we always want to be practicing those.
 

chachacha

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Yes, she confirmed it on her IG complete with picture from the hospital. She made a long-ish post yesterday after their ACI bronze - https://www.instagram.com/p/CT9tHK2lbqe/.
Well if she had ********* and was not fully recovered she should not be competing and allow herself time so that they are ready by the Grand Prixs. But her coaches are the same people that didn’t stop them from finishing a program when she had that splat out of the lift and had a concussion. However I’m sure it’s all just early season issues vs recovering or why would they have gone when it’s a senior B.
 

Spiralgraph

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In Sylvia's post upthread (number 20) she cites C/J's assignment to Finlandia, so can I safely assume that whatever problems that kept Jessica and Brian from competing outside of the US have been resolved for good?
I hope that's true; when they're skating well they're lovely to watch.
 

sk8nlizard

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Thank you @GoneWithTheWind and @clairecloutier. I'm glad my memory isn't totally failing me (yet, LOL).

I'm usually not one to introduce conspiracy theories, but I feel like the callers are particularly strict with Cain-G and LeDuc on their SBS jumps. I know they see things from a different angle, but they don't seem to ever give them the benefit of the doubt IMO.
I think a lot of it is unfortunately reputation. Once you get a reputation for cheated jumps, you get more heavily scrutinized. The same thing happened to Mirai and happens to Karen. It’s unfortunate but is the way it is.
 

DreamSkates

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Well if she had ********* and was not fully recovered she should not be competing and allow herself time so that they are ready by the Grand Prixs. But her coaches are the same people that didn’t stop them from finishing a program when she had that splat out of the lift and had a concussion. However I’m sure it’s all just early season issues vs recovering or why would they have gone when it’s a senior B.
These choices are hers and her partners, as adults, more than her coaches.
 

zoe111

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I think a lot of it is unfortunately reputation. Once you get a reputation for cheated jumps, you get more heavily scrutinized. The same thing happened to Mirai and happens to Karen. It’s unfortunate but is the way it is.
And unfortunately it was a well earned reputation. Ashley has long had rotation issues with jumps. She doesn’t rotate very quickly and a lot of times those jumps are short. And now with having to recover from ykw, her snap into rotation looks even slower, even in the throws.
 

Sylvia

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Nica Digerness and Mark Sadusky teamed up in July (lift clip from Mark's TikTok that was posted in the previous Pairs thread): https://www.tiktok.com/@marksadusky/video/6982279853257133317

U.S. junior pairs competed on the JGP for the first time this season in Gdansk, Poland, and both teams set all new ISU personal best scores.
Anastasia Smirnova/Danylo or Danil Siianytsia placed 4th (153.63) - their 3rd place FS (98.56): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwTK-vXOLuc
Cool twist pic: https://www.instagram.com/p/CUe3jBIIseE/

Isabelle Martins/Ryan Bedard were 5th (141.96) - their 5th place FS (94.87): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06usIAHk0do
Practice clips shared by Isabelle (sbs 3S & throw 3S): https://www.instagram.com/p/CUakVxJrMng/

Both teams will compete in Linz, Austria this coming week, to be joined by Cate Fleming/Chase Finster who are making their JGP debut.
 
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Jammers

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I honestly think that the 2nd Olympic spot is going to be hotly contested between CG/L and C/J if Finlandia is an indication. Interesting that international judges put C/J with more mistakes close to CG/L with relatively fewer mistakes
C/J just need to land their jumps cleanly and they will beat CG/L in just about any competition they are both entered in. But that is a big if.
 

Sylvia

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@clairecloutier recently interviewed Lu/Mitrofanov:
This season, Lu/Mitrofanov hope to put out consistent, solid programs to show their improvement as a team and help build their body of work. After starting their season with a sixth-place finish at Cranberry Cup, Lu/Mitrofanov then won a bronze medal at the John Nicks Pairs Challenge in New York City, where they skated one of the best long programs of their career to date. The duo are now preparing for their upcoming Grand Prix events, NHK Trophy and Rostelecom Cup, as well as 2022 U.S. Nationals.
Lu and Mitrofanov recently took some time to chat with Figure Skaters Online about how they got started in skating, what they enjoy most about the sport, and what their lives are like off the ice. The team also discussed their new programs, the progress of their technical elements, and their goals for the season.
 

Sylvia

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Here's a 3-minute IGTV video titled "Great Park Pairs Friday Fun" that was posted on the Meno/Sand coaching account over the weekend: https://www.instagram.com/tv/CUy6OVCDEJ8/
13 teams were featured in the video (practice clips and/or photos).

Senior:
Knierim/Frazier - showed sbs 3T (improved unison) at the beginning and a nice throw 3F at the end of the video
Kate Finster/Matej Silecky
Liu/O'Shea
McBeath/Bartholomay
Calalang/Johnson (away at Finlandia Trophy so a photo of them was shown)

Junior:
"Cat & Timmy" = Catherine Rivers/Timmy Chapman who moved to Cali after the Nicks comp. in Sept.
Ashley Fletcher/Aidan Brown
Sonia Baram/Daniel Tioumentsev - impressive 3twist (they will have 1 season of ISU junior eligibility in 2022-23)
Megan Wessenberg/Blake Eisenach
Cate Fleming/Chase Finster (they were away making their JGP debut in Austria with Chris Knierim)

Novice: Melania Delis/Nathan Rensing
Intermediate: Alissa Korytek/Carter Griffin
Juvenile: Ashley Ma & Connor Fant
 
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Sylvia

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Junior Pairs results from Linz, Austria:

6 Anastasiia SMIRNOVA / Danylo SIIANYTSIA USA 156.40 7 6 (new ISU PB scores in FS & total)
8 Isabelle MARTINS / Ryan BEDARD USA 134.89 8 8 (new ISU PB of 50.30 in SP)
10 Cate FLEMING / Chase FINSTER USA 123.66 10 9

Smirnova/Siianytsia's FS (new ISU PB of 104.85 & successful opening sbs 3S): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6_QNkq4KWA
Cool photo of their high 3twist in SP (first one): https://www.instagram.com/p/CUyRRMKoSx5/

The U.S. has 2 pairs spots for 2022 Junior Worlds and these 3 are the only teams with the TES minimums (23/34) right now.
 
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RoseRed

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Here's a 3-minute IGTV video titled "Great Park Pairs Friday Fun" that was posted on the Meno/Sand coaching account over the weekend: https://www.instagram.com/tv/CUy6OVCDEJ8/
13 teams were featured in the video (practice clips and/or photos).

Senior:
Knierim/Frazier - showed sbs 3T (improved unison) at the beginning and a nice throw 3F at the end of the video
Kate Finster/Matej Silecky
Liu/O'Shea
McBeath/Bartholomay
Calalang/Johnson (away at Finlandia Trophy so a photo of them was shown)

Junior:
"Cat & Timmy" = Catherine Rivers/Timmy Chapman who moved to Cali after the Nicks comp. in Sept.
Ashley Fletcher/Aidan Brown
Sonia Baram/Daniel Tioumentsev - impressive 3twist (they will have 1 season of ISU junior eligibility in 2022-23)
Megan Wessenberg/Blake Eisenach
Cate Fleming/Chase Finster (they were away making their JGP debut in Austria with Chris Knierim)

Novice: Melania Delis/Nathan Rensing
Intermediate: Alissa Korytek/Carter Griffin
Juvenile: Ashley Ma & Connor Fant
Megan Wessenberg is 23 years old, so they should be seniors shouldn't they?
 

Cleo1782

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Megan Wessenberg is 23 years old, so they should be seniors shouldn't they?
There is age eligibility requirements for internationally competing as a junior, but not for domestic competitions. It's fairly common for newer pairs to be over the age of junior eligibility. It's more about skill level. As someone new to pairs, it would be hard and risky for her to jump to senior immediately.
 

skylark

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She under-rotates and downgraded more often than most pair girls.
Do you mean more often than pairs girls who are also among the top ten pairs teams in the World Championships, twice? Or do you mean more often than 50 percent of all pairs girls competing in the World or even in the US? It's one thing to be openly "campaigning" against someone in threads, and trying to convince others of your favorites or non-favorites. But I'm not sure your statement about Ashley Cain-Gribble is accurate. Of course if you've comprised statistics, that's another thing.

I'd like to say a huge congratulations :cheer2:to Ashley Cain-Gribble and Timothy Leduc for their good skating at Finlandia last week-end, and for their bronze medal.* It was a good step for them to have two clean skates in the competition, and it was also fabulous that they skated two lovely performances of beautiful skates! I love these programs, especially the SP, and I believe they both highlight the unique beauty of Ashley and Timothy's skating: their gorgeous lines, their unison, their passion and mutual commitment to the music. I like to see a lot of diversity in styles in pairs skating, so I'm very appreciative of their good qualities, which are different from the qualities of most pairs skaters. *ETA: this was a stacked field, so C-G/L's accomplishment is even more impressive.

Consistency is wonderful and allows the judges to begin to trust skaters and ready to give them their due. Still ... I'd rather watch a team that has some interesting moments and may or may not deliver consistently than a solid team that doesn't give me something emotionally.
 
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