USFS Qualifying Season Plans

Coco

Rotating while Russian!
Messages
15,576
It would be interesting to have a preliminary round at Nationals that is just a free skate or free dance, held in a smaller arena Monday-Wednesday-ish. Then the SP or SD could be semi-finals, and competitors would be those with byes plus Y number of finishers from prelims to get 3 warmup groups. Then the top X scores from the SP or SD would compete in the finals (FS or FD), with X = number needed for two warmup groups.

With the large arena only being needed for 2 FS/FD warmup groups per discipline, they might be able to rent it less days, maybe.
 

concorde

Well-Known Member
Messages
547
It would be interesting to have a preliminary round at Nationals that is just a free skate or free dance, held in a smaller arena Monday-Wednesday-ish. Then the SP or SD could be semi-finals, and competitors would be those with byes plus Y number of finishers from prelims to get 3 warmup groups. Then the top X scores from the SP or SD would compete in the finals (FS or FD), with X = number needed for two warmup groups.

With the large arena only being needed for 2 FS/FD warmup groups per discipline, they might be able to rent it less days, maybe.
I like that idea for both Senior and Junior levels skaters. I believe the overall numbers are low enough so that would work.

Where it would get tricky is how do you handle Novice skaters? The numbers there can still be high - last 2 years at South Atlantics, there were 3 groups of Novices. Added to that, top Novices then skate Junior which would be a hurdle since I don't see it as being realistic for them to skate Novice programs early in the week and Junior program later in the week. Under last year's system, top Novices had about 6 weeks to get used to skating the Junior program. This difference between Novice and Junior is a bit more time and on the short, the Junior short has a specified jump (Lutz this year) and the Junior long has an extra jumping pass as compared to the Novice. I think I got the differences right.

Some skaters skated both Novice and Junior in last year's NQS so they were hedging the bets to get to Sectionals. While I expect top Novices will be doing this again, it one things to skate Novice and two weeks later skate Junior (and vice versa) but I do think it is unrealistic for them to skate different programs within the same week.
 

Sylvia

Wishing I could go back to the Lake Placid JGP
Messages
62,783
Nothing has been announced yet re. spectators being allowed to watch.

I’m hoping NBC Sports Gold will stream these competitions live (eta: or the Senior & Junior level events on demand at least) but we’ll have to wait and see.
 
Last edited:

Debbie S

Well-Known Member
Messages
12,399
Ok while you guys argue the technicalities, dumb fan wants to know if we can watch online or am I buying a hazmat suit and driving to Leesburg?
I assume NBC Gold will show the qual comps at Junior and Senior level, like they have in the past, but as Sylvia said, we'll have to wait for an official announcement. If not, I would imagine USFS would broadcast them on the Fan Zone.

I hope they'll have another big comp in Leesburg when it's safe to go and watch. Unless we have a vaccine by then, early Dec should be smack in the middle of a second wave. :(

I'm a bit behind on this thread....regarding the qual structure (in normal seasons), this setup is an interesting idea, but is likely an increased expense for most skaters (farther to travel) and in a normal season would probably result in skaters being shut out of comps due to space limits. Also factor in that at the grassroots level, Regionals is a big goal for many skaters, most of whom have no chance at ever getting to Nats or even Sectionals, so it would be sad to see the pinnacle of their season disappear.

OTOH, Regionals is a lot of work (and expense) for host clubs and no guarantee they'll make a profit (usually depends on how much practice ice they have available and can sell) and maybe a condensed qual season is more sensible economically. But then you wonder how many kids will get discouraged once they get to the higher levels and quit the sport.

Re a qual round at Nats...given the expense involved with training for and attending Nats, I don't think an elimination round is fair or feasible. Yes, Regionals often have elimination rounds (usually Novice and below) and by the time the kids reach their final round FS, they are usually so tired they almost don't want to skate. I don't think Nats should be run that way.
 

concorde

Well-Known Member
Messages
547
Ok while you guys argue the technicalities, dumb fan wants to know if we can watch online or am I buying a hazmat suit and driving to Leesburg?
Leesburg is Ion. Right now Ion is allowing parents to sit inside the building and watch their skaters. Based on that, I think there is a chance that fans will be allowed inside the rink. I don't think that chance is high.

Many rinks do not allow parents inside the building. If one of the competitions is being held at a rink with that policy, I highly doubt fans will be allowed.
 

meggonzo

Well-Known Member
Messages
8,097
Well, she scored better at Nationals by 20 points. But I hate to say, several of those triples in the free at Nationals weren't around, but judged clean or just <. The toe loops were clean looking though. I'm not sure anyone else skated better so 11th place might still be justified and it was a good skate, but I feel like Audrey Shin and Julia Biechler were just as deserving of a place at Nationals based on Sectionals...so I am really ok with this.

I lost track of which skater people were talking about.
 

DreamSkates

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,561
Ok while you guys argue the technicalities, dumb fan wants to know if we can watch online or am I buying a hazmat suit and driving to Leesburg?
If NBC Sports Gold wants to make any money from FS fans, then they will find a way to stream it! Please!!!!
 

MacMadame

Staying at home
Messages
37,682
If NBC Sports Gold wants to make any money from FS fans, then they will find a way to stream it! Please!!!!
I'm thinking they will have an incentive to stream it. Otherwise, they are throwing away a chunk of money.

I think it is possible that they will also stream the domestic GPs. Why not?
 

Coco

Rotating while Russian!
Messages
15,576
I like that idea for both Senior and Junior levels skaters. I believe the overall numbers are low enough so that would work.

I gotta be honest, I thought Nationals were 'streamlined' down to just junior and senior divisions.

There would still need to be qualifying competitions so people could earn their scores to qualify for Prelims. So the Novice skaters would compete there and then however they want to determine the 'top' Novice skaters, invite them to compete at Juniors.
 

Theoreticalgirl

your faves are problematic
Messages
1,121
OTOH, Regionals is a lot of work (and expense) for host clubs and no guarantee they'll make a profit (usually depends on how much practice ice they have available and can sell) and maybe a condensed qual season is more sensible economically. But then you wonder how many kids will get discouraged once they get to the higher levels and quit the sport.

I think that's the point of the Excel Series—to keep those skaters engaged without having to burn out on the elite track.
 

concorde

Well-Known Member
Messages
547
I gotta be honest, I thought Nationals were 'streamlined' down to just junior and senior divisions.
Yes and no.

Yes - only those two levels are competing.
No since the top Novice skaters are now "elevated" to Juniors and skate as Juniors. Isabeau did that last year. She qualified as a Novice but skated at Nationals as a Junior.
 

gkelly

Well-Known Member
Messages
15,478
Are we talking about this year or for the indefinite future in hopes that training and travel will be more normalized in a year or two?

That could probably work for a two-tiered qualifying structure rather than the current three-tier version (regionals, sectionals, nationals...and NQS) for singles.

First level, for all levels, spread out at 8 or 9 or more events in the summer and fall, spread across the country, giving all skaters juvenile through senior an opportunity to qualify for
 

Debbie S

Well-Known Member
Messages
12,399
I think that's the point of the Excel Series—to keep those skaters engaged without having to burn out on the elite track.
Right, but I'm thinking of skaters who are moderately competitive at their levels (might make FR but not Sectionals) and view Regionals as their end goal each season. If a qual comp wasn't accessible to them, would they be OK with just doing club comps or Excel or would they lose interest and move on to other sports/activities?

And a problem with the Excel Series is the timing - the final is mid-June and skaters are supposed to qualify between January and May, which isn't prime club comp season. I know it's new, but there isn't much interest from the skaters and coaches in my area. Similar to Open Juv, most skaters want to compete at the 'regular' levels. Excel might draw more interest if it was timed more like the Solo Dance Series...qualify via summer comps with the final in early fall.
 

Theoreticalgirl

your faves are problematic
Messages
1,121
Right, but I'm thinking of skaters who are moderately competitive at their levels (might make FR but not Sectionals) and view Regionals as their end goal each season. If a qual comp wasn't accessible to them, would they be OK with just doing club comps or Excel or would they lose interest and move on to other sports/activities.

Oh I totally agree—just pointing out that there are opportunities. In my earlier post I mentioned that I think Regionals/etc is a more equitable method of providing access to these kinds of competitions.
 

gkelly

Well-Known Member
Messages
15,478
I gotta be honest, I thought Nationals were 'streamlined' down to just junior and senior divisions.

There would still need to be qualifying competitions so people could earn their scores to qualify for Prelims.

What are "Prelims"? This qualifying round at Nationals that FSUers have invented in this thread?

We're still trying to figure out what's really happening this year, so also trying to figure out how a completely different newly invented system might work could get confusing, especially if people don't specify when they're speculating about the real plan vs. making stuff up on the fly.

(I started a post earlier about how the made-up system could work, but I decided not to post it, for that reason.)

So the Novice skaters would compete there and then however they want to determine the 'top' Novice skaters, invite them to compete at Juniors.

Yes, if they're going to use a similar system as last year to qualify top novices from the November competition to compete junior at Nationals.

What's still not clear for this season, real life, is what is going to happen with the juveniles and intermediates, and novices in general. A few years ago they had qualified through regionals to sectionals and from there to Nationals at their respective levels. As of last year their season ended at sectionals (except those top two novices in each section), but they had to qualify to sectionals from their respective regionals, or through the NQS.

Since there are no regionals or NQS this season, will juvenile and intermediate skaters be competing at one or two of the championship series as this year's participation in the qualifying season, even though they will not be qualifying to anything beyond that?

And of course there would need to be novice events if they're going to take top novices to Nationals.

If this series is only for juniors and seniors, that will need to be stated explicitly, in a way that lets skaters who have the possibility to skate either novice or junior, or senior, given the relaxed test requirements, figure out what their best options would be this year and also whether skating up this year would affect what level they'd be allowed to compete in 2021-22 if that goes back to something more like the 2019-20 season structure.

OTOH, Regionals is a lot of work (and expense) for host clubs and no guarantee they'll make a profit (usually depends on how much practice ice they have available and can sell) and maybe a condensed qual season is more sensible economically. But then you wonder how many kids will get discouraged once they get to the higher levels and quit the sport.

I think that's the point of the Excel Series—to keep those skaters engaged without having to burn out on the elite track.

That's true, for some skaters . . . Although the Excel Series was also canceled this season. And it is much more recreational in design: no short programs, strict limits on jump content.

However, there are a significant number of what we might call "competitive" skaters -- neither recreational nor elite -- who do want to attempt double axels in their programs, who do want to train and compete short programs, who may want try a triple or two. As a point of personal pride, even if they don't expect to get beyond regionals. And in some cases with the possibility that if everything does fall into place for them at the right moment, they might advance after all.

At Juvenile and Intermediate levels, it's often too soon for these kids to know whether they will be able to step up their game at higher levels or will need to back off (for physical reasons or financial reasons or family priorities or whatever). Many are still eager and hopeful at those levels. And those are the levels that really swell the numbers at regionals.

So would there still be a place for skaters at those skill levels in a "condensed" qualifying season?
 
Last edited:

Sylvia

Wishing I could go back to the Lake Placid JGP
Messages
62,783
We're still trying to figure out what's really happening this year, so also trying to figure out how a completely different newly invented system could get confusing, especially if people don't specify when they're speculating about the real plan vs. making stuff up on the fly.
Yes.

2 key excerpts from USFS’ August 6th press release linked in post #1:

Prior to Aug. 17, U.S. Figure Skating will publish a comprehensive Championship Series Athlete and Coach Handbook with a full outline of the Championship Series and technical information.

Advancement to the 2021 Toyota U.S. Figure Skating Championships and naming of the National High Performance Development Team will be processed and made available to the public the week of Dec. 7.
 

AngieNikodinovLove

Well-Known Member
Messages
5,460
Novice question here, if I pay for streaming does it work like a DVR where I could go back and rewatch it days or weeks or months later?
 

annie720

Well-Known Member
Messages
822
Usually. There have been some glitches with NBC Sports on different devices, but the whole season is supposed to be archived.
I wonder if they fixed the glitches because I just accessed Sports Gold through my Roku and it was showing a lot of seasons for replays, even back to 2017 GP events. Last winter I was having the same issues as others when using Roku when it was only showing a few events. I didn't actually try to play them because it wanted me to enter a new code since I was switching to Roku from the NBC app, and I'm too lazy to do that.

I also just checked Sports Gold on the web and everything back to September 2018 is available.
 

HeManSkaterDad

Well-Known Member
Messages
410
The nine regions were based on a 1960 skater census that has not been updated. Since that time, the number of skaters in the Eastern section has exploded whereas the number of skaters on the West has remained low. At the Juvenile and Intermediate levels (girls only), South Atlantics typically has 100+ skaters for each of those two levels whereas one region (Northwest I believe) tends to have only 1 group of skaters (< 24) for both of these levels. If you compare the content between the big vs small regions at those levels, you will see a discrepancy in content with the East Coast skaters tending to be doing harder tricks. What is interesting is that by the Junior and Senior level (women), the content level of the West Coast skaters tends to be higher than the content level of the East coast skaters. I looked closely at this several years ago and if I remember right, Midwest skater numbers were more the average the East/West.

I do not discount the unfairness of a judging panel. The second year my daughter skater Juvenile, Juveniles used two ice sheets and one set of judges scored 3 groups and a different set scored the other 3. Not sure if it was weird coincidence or due to different judging panel, but one sheet had scores about 10 points lower than the other sheet. In that case, it was all balanced out since the final used the same scoring panel.

I get your point but with this system, I think all have the same chance of moving on. Under the previous system, East Coast skaters were at a disadvantage due to sheer numbers.
I know the feeling, my daughter skated every level at South Atlantics, Juvenile thru Senior.
 

GarrAargHrumph

I can kill you with my brain
Messages
19,094
From the USFS's webinar tonight: USFS has found that most athletes want to compete this season. Most wanted in person competitions when surveyed before and during this meeting. Surveyed in the meeting, most athletes plan to compete at two of the events.

5 of the 8 sites selected to participate were the original planned locations for (I believe the competition series?), the rest were based on using the home address data of athletes to identify the most central locations v. where athletes are. Know that this isn't perfect.

They are not looking at adding additional competitions to the list at this point.

All of the competitions are sharing one competition website, and one handbook.

Foreign athletes who train in the US cannot compete in this series. Citizenship must be by 9/1.

Age requirements as of Sept 1.

Testing requirements: can compete up to two levels than current test level. Realize test sessions right now are challenging.

No qualifying rounds, no final rounds. Everyone who enters can get a final score.

For singles, identify your preferred competition, and register for that first, by 9/1. Then, based on availability, as of 9/7 you can register for an additional competition. For dance and pairs, you can register for two competitions right up front. Encouraged to register asap (opens 8/17 4pm) because some of these competitions may fill. Once max entries for a comp are met, registrations stop.

If want to qualify for championships or high performance development team camp, must register for the series. That includes if you have a bye by placing top 5 at last year's nationals.

Singles advancement based on your sectional rank. Eastern, Midwestern, Pacific. Pairs and ice dance on your national rank. Advancement details (to Nationals and to the camp) will be published 9/1. If you have a bye, you still need to register for the series.

Health and safety regulations: Not finalized yet. Based on things like local regulations. So people registering for this series will probably do so without knowing the health and safety rules.

Chaperones (for athletes age 17 and under) will be permitted to accompany skaters, likely one chaperone per athlete per competition. Chaperones may be allowed to watch the competition, but that depends on things like local site regulations for max. number of people in the facility.

At this point, there will be no spectators. There will be a live stream. Jr and Sr will be on NBC Sports Gold. Lower levels on USFS Fanzone.

If a competition is cancelled, they'll try to reallocate your entry to a comp that works for you, or give your money back.

Athlete handbook will be published on Monday.

People are asking questions like, what if several events are cancelled; who gets to advance? Only those whose competitions were held? Not answered directly. Reiterated that they'll try to fit you into another competition.

Many people asked this one: what about the 14 day quarantine period for Massachusetts - especially since that's one of the only two comps that take pairs. Pairs skaters keep asking about the quarantine in Mass., as it determines which competition they'll sign up for when entries open on Monday. The folks holding the meeting are obviously deliberately avoiding the 14 day quarantine period for Massachusetts questions. They absolutely deliberately ignored those questions. Wow.
 

Sylvia

Wishing I could go back to the Lake Placid JGP
Messages
62,783
I assume anyone who has represented Team USA internationally (Carreira/Ponomarenko, Krasnozhon) or was eligible to register for U.S. qualifying season last year (Paniot) will be allowed to compete as long as they register by the deadline.

C/P already have a bye to 2021 Nationals (4th in Greensboro). Mervin Tran already has his green card.

Thanks for the summary, @GarrAargHrumph.
 
Last edited:

GarrAargHrumph

I can kill you with my brain
Messages
19,094
I assume anyone who has represented Team USA internationally (Carreira/Ponomarenko, Krasnozhon) or was eligible to register for U.S. qualifying season last year (Paniot) will be allowed to compete.

Thank for the summary, @GarrAargHrumph.

I don't know. They said foreign athletes who train in the US cannot compete in this series. Then they said citizenship as of September 1. Does that mean that no foreign athlete can compete, it's only for US citizens? Or does that mean that any Team USA member can compete? Or... My interpretation was US Citizens as of 9/1, or you can't compete. I'd be interested in clarification on this. I'm sending them an email now.

And you're most welcome!
 
Last edited:

Debbie S

Well-Known Member
Messages
12,399
@GarrAargHrumph You wrote that even those with a bye to Nats/top 5 last year need to register....does that mean they are required to compete or is it just a formality for signing up for the season, like normal registration for Regionals by 9/1?
 

GarrAargHrumph

I can kill you with my brain
Messages
19,094
From what they said, I suspect it's a formality. They said something about contacting those with a bye once they register.
 

Users who are viewing this thread

Top
Do Not Sell My Personal Information