The Judges’ Table Does Rostelecom 2018

alexandra-stepanova-and-ivan-bukin-3

Our judges did not have the most uplifting things to say about the penultimate Grand Prix of the year. They didn’t watch much of the event, and they’re not sorry about it. Rostelecom was messy, creating room for several surprise medalists who took advantage of mistakes by others. Still, in the ladies’ and men’s events, Olympic champions Yuzuru Hanyu and Alina Zagitova took the gold, and the champions in the pairs and dance events were all but a given.

Thanks so much to these judges for sharing their thoughts with The Judges’ Table during Rostelecom Cup 2018:

Amanda H. (@BlondeAssassin1)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I’m a lifelong fan who skated as a kid, competing locally and skating in club shows wearing terrible costumes. I was also on a precision skating team (the precursor to synchro) that competed at Sectionals and Nationals.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Satoko Miyahara at 2016 Worlds
Events judged: Skate America 2015, Skate Canada 2015, US Nationals 2016, World Junior Championships 2016, Throwback: 1994 Olympics Ladies, Skate Canada 2016, NHK Trophy 2017, Olympic Ice Dance Event 2018, Rostelecom Cup 2018

Becky Y.
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Hardcore fan since Calgary ’88. Unfortunately, my klutzy side has limited my figure skating career – dance only & hold the ice. My youngest kid (born during the Sochi ice dance event) is named after one of my favourite skaters!
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Weaver & Poje 14/15 Worlds.
Events judged: Canadian Nationals 2018, Rostelecom Cup 2018

Iris W. | Tumblr
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Previous casual fan, but took a deep dive into skating the last couple of years! It’s been a super fun time since then.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years?Pretty much anything from Piper and Paul!
Events judged: Olympic Team Event 2018, Rostelecom Cup 2018

Isabel N. (@madrskating) | Mad For Skating
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I became a hardcore fan after the 2014 Olympics and I never looked back!
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Ashley Wagner, particularly the 2018 Nationals That Never Happened.
Events judged: World Team Trophy 2017, Russian Nationals 2017-2018, Rostelecom Cup 2018

LET’S GET JUDGING. Click “continue reading” below to continue. When you’re finished reading, leave a comment to let us know what you thought about NHK Trophy, how you think the real judges did, and how you think our judges did. If you disagree, sign up to judge an event next year and share your thoughts!

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The Judges’ Table Does the Olympics Ladies’ Event 2018

satoko olympics

With a tie between Alina Zagitova and Evgenia Medvedeva in the free skate, the battle for gold in the ladies’ discipline ultimately came down the short program, where Zagitova bested her training mate by just over a point. Bronze medalist Kaetlyn Osmond became the first lady not named Alina or Evgenia to crack 151 in the free skate (and joins Yuna Kim as the only non-Russians in the top 20 free skate scores ever).

Olympic posts are going to have to be formatted a bit differently than others. As you’ve probably noticed, the IOC and a variety of networks (NBC, which is affecting me in the state, CBC, EuroSport, etc.) are removing or blocking access to videos after the fact. I did the best I could to find links. Some are embedded into the post as normal; others are just linked into the responses.

Thanks to these judges for sitting at The Judges’ Table during the Olympic Ladies’ Event!

Amanda P. (@storyologist_ap) | The Storyologist
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I’ve loved skating all my life, but only laced up my own skates a couple years ago. Now I’m slowly working my way through the skills and watching every competition I can find a stream for!
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Weaver/Poje’s 2015 free dance at Worlds.
Events judged: Grand Prix Final 2016, World Championships 2017, Cup of China 2017, Junior Grand Prix Final 2017, Olympic Ladies’ Event 2018

Andrea G. 
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Began watching skating and going to rinks for fun in Melbourne in the 1970’s. Rediscovered figure skating in the early 2000’s after moving to Japan, switching the TV on one Saturday afternoon and seeing Johnny Weir. 
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Takahito Mura’s free program at 2015 Japanese Nationals.
Events judged: Japanese Nationals 2017-2018, Olympic Ladies’ Event 2018

Camden R. (@camdenrider| YouTube Channel
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I have skated for the last 11 years! Currently at the intermediate level. One time Ashley and Adam called me their son and that was my peak.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Satoko Miyahara’s free skate at 2017 Skate Canada.
Events judged: Grand Prix Final 2016, Rostelecom Cup 2017, Junior Grand Prix Final 2017, Olympic Ladies’ Event 2018

Jenny H.  (@IceCharades)| Ice Charades
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I’m better judging the skaters’ costumes than GOEs, but I’ve got chapter 15 of Dick Button’s book.  Watch out Pyeongchang!
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Mao’s LP at Sochi.
Events judged: Olympic Ladies’ Event 2018

Justine K. (@beanyskates) | Princess Beany Skates
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I skated for years and have now coached for just as many. I fell in love with the sport when I saw Alexei Yagudin live at the 2001 World Championships in Vancouver. Since then I’ve been to another 6 World Championships, most recently in Helsinki and started a figure skating (Yuzuru Hanyu) blog.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? I still think Scott & Tessa should be two-time Olympic Champions.
Events judged: Cup of China 2015, Japanese Nationals 2015-16, Canadian Nationals 2016, Throwback: 1994 Olympics Ladies, Trophee de France 2016, Canadian Nationals 2017, Internationaux de France 2017, Olympic Ladies’ Event 2018

LET’S GET JUDGING. Click “continue reading” below to continue. When you’re finished reading, leave a comment to let us know what you thought about the Olympics, how you think the real judges did, and how you think our judges did. If you disagree, sign up to judge an event later in the year and share your thoughts!

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The Judges’ Table Does US Nationals 2018

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That was a lot. I AM SO TIRED. Upsets and surprises were the main story of nearly every event. In the remaining competition, pairs, the top 3 teams all have impressive comeback stories that made their performances a delight to watch. Only Nathan Chen managed to defend his national title and few 2014 Olympians will be on the American team in Pyeongchang. I would put money on Canadian podiums this weekend being a little less surprising.

A side note: please reach out if videos are difficult to access. Media organizations have been removing videos from YouTube.

Thanks to these judges for sitting at The Judges’ Table during a crazy US nationals!

Craig S. (@timzbaygullls)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I competed Junior Pairs and Men until I was 20. I still show back up to the rink to throw down some triples every once in a while. I love tracking scores and make my own fantasy competitions with my best friends from the skating years!
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? The most recently skated program not by one of Eteri’s students.
Events judged: US Nationals 2018

Grace W. | Tumblr
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I’ve never been a skater myself, but I’ve been a fan since 1998 and have attended 3 world championships, most recently in Helsinki in 2017.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Misha Ge’s free skate at the 2017 World Championships.
Events judged: NHK 2016, World Team Trophy 2017, US Nationals 2018

Pinar G. (@pinar_gurel)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I have been skating since age 7, coached a little in high school and college, competed for Dartmouth College at the Intercollegiate level, and was a part of the 2012 Intercollegiate National Championship team. I am now competing in the adult circuit, 2016 pewter medalist at adult nationals championship master junior/senior level.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Marin Honda’s free program at 2017 Skate Canada
Events judged: US Nationals 2018

Rylie S. (@rsmittay)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I have wanted to become a figure skater ever since I was little, when I first stepped foot on the ice at three years old. I enjoy following the figure skating season, and I have attended Stars on Ice. I will be attending Skate America in November. I have also won Summer With Team USA two years in a row.
Events judged: US Nationals 2018

Samantha H. (@samantharrin)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I skated for 10 years growing up, and I’ve been watching skating as long as I can remember. I’m more likely to get emotional about a good quad loop than pretty choreo. But that place where really athletic meets really artistic is sublime.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Mao Asada’s long at Vancouver 2010 comes to mind.
Events judged: US Nationals 2018

Sam H. (@quadlutze)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I was just the kid who was obsessed with Michelle Kwan but had no idea what was going on. Dropped the four year fan act in 2010 and never looked back.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Satoko Miyahara’s entire career.
Events judged: Junior Grand Prix Final 2017, US Nationals 2018

LET’S GET JUDGING. Click “continue reading” below to continue. When you’re finished reading, leave a comment to let us know what you thought about the Japanese Nationals, how you think the real judges did, and how you think our judges did. If you disagree, sign up to judge an event later in the year and share your thoughts!

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The Judges’ Table Does US Nationals 2016-2017

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I don’t think anyone expected to be calling Karen Chen “National Champion,” or to start referring to Nathan Chen’s five-quad free skate, or see so many nervous falls in America’s best discipline. But US Nationals served up these surprises and more, including the incredible comebacks of Deanna Stellato and Dennis Phan and the disappointing performances of World team contenders (and 2016 top 10 World Championship finishers!) Max Aaron and Gracie Gold.

Thanks to the judges who sat at the table for US Nationals!

Bronwyn (@inabauers) | Lutz and Glory
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Your friendly Detroit-area skating fan.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Tatsuki Machida should have won 2014 Worlds.

Emily E. (@JoyofEmily)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Lifelong figure skater. Currently coaching teeny tiny Learn To Skate and Low Freestyle skaters, passing on my love of the Kerrigan spiral.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years?  Hubbell & Donohue’s 2015/16 Short Dance certainly did not receive the credit it was due all season.

Hannah C. (@hannahskates96) | A Skater’s Perspective
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I started skating 13 years ago and have been competing for 10 years. I am currently at the Novice level and I literally spend all of my free time on skating. Literally. Watching skating, researching skating, dreaming about skating.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Ashley Wagner’s 2016 Worlds Short Program. She should have been the leader.

Joseph K. (@thebrothaj)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Former novice level skater (Early ’80’s). Forever a fan of quality skating over quantity skating. Last competition attended was Skate America 2016.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Carolina Kostner, 2014 Winter Olympics short & long programs.

Lauren (@lbee329)
Favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years: Can I possibly do past six years because by a mile for me is Meryl and Charlie’s Samson and Delilah 2009 Worlds. It should have won the free dance. They should have medaled. I watched it every so often and every time I am still mad.

LET’S GET JUDGING. Click “continue reading” below to continue. When you’re finished reading, leave a comment to let us know what you thought about US Nationals, how you think the real judges did, and how you think our judges did. If you disagree, sign up to judge an event later in the year and share your thoughts!

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US and Canadian Nationals 2017: The Judges

 

The holidays are over, the cold of January is settling in, Americans are either celebrating or thanking their lucky stars that US Nationals are providing a welcome distraction to that thing that’s happening on Friday. But American skating fans have plenty of reasons to be frustrated by sport as well – Adam Rippon, Polina Edmunds, and Alexa Scimeca and Chris Kneirim are just some of the big names taken out of competition this weekend by injury, leaving big gaps on the podium and possibly even larger gaps on the world championship team as competitors look to maintain or reclaim three spots in Pyeongchang.

In significant contrast, Canada looks to be on the upswing – a resurgent team of really strong ladies, a two-time pairs world championship team that seems to peak at just the right time each season, a quad salchow from the guy who won Canadian Nationals eight times without it (eight, 8, one two three four five six seven eight), and the dramatic return of Tessa and Scott should make Canadian Nationals the prelude to a fantastic second half of the international season for Team Canada.

Thank you to these judges who will be giving their takes on American and Canadian nationals!

American Nationals
Bronwyn (@inabauers) | Lutz and Glory
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Your friendly Detroit-area skating fan.

What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Tatsuki Machida should have won 2014 Worlds.

Emily E. (@JoyofEmily)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Lifelong figure skater. Currently coaching teeny tiny Learn To Skate and Low Freestyle skaters, passing on my love of the Kerrigan spiral.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Hubbell & Donohue’s 2015/16 Short Dance certainly did not receive the credit it was due all season.

Fannya C. (@LAFANNYA)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I have been a fan of figure skating since 2012. I became one when I was randomly changing channels and came across Nationals. I thought it was such a beautiful sport and art. Ever since I have watched every season and have tried to attend more competitions.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Karen Chen

Hannah C. (@hannahskates96) | A Skater’s Perspective
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I started skating 13 years ago and have been competing for 10 years. I am currently at the Novice level and I literally spend all of my free time on skating. Literally. Watching skating, researching skating, dreaming about skating.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Ashley Wagner’s 2016 Worlds Short Program. She should have been the leader.

Joseph K. (@thebrothaj)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. Former novice level skater (Early ’80’s). Forever a fan of quality skating over quantity skating. Last competition attended was Skate America 2016.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Carolina Kostner, 2014 Winter Olympics short & long programs.

Lauren B. (@lbee329)
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? By a mile for me is Meryl and Charlie’s Samson and Delilah 2009 Worlds. It should have won the free dance. They should have medaled. I watched it every so often and every time I am still mad.

Canadian Nationals
Cassandra (@CKimm1314) | Tumblr
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I’ve been skating since I was three, and am working on becoming a fully certified coach. My first live event at SCI 2015 is what got me into this full time. Long time fan of Patrick Chan though! Now I’m obsessed and if I’m not watching figure skating I’m probably at the rink! 🙂
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Probably gonna go with Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir’s free dance in Sochi.

Justine K. (@beanyskates) | Princess Beany Skates
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I skated for years and have now coached for just as many. I fell in love with the sport when I saw Alexei Yagudin live at the 2001 World Championships in Vancouver. Since then I’ve been to another 4 World Championships (and I’ll be in Finland this year!) and a number of smaller events, started a figure skating blog, and dedicated many seasons to getting up early to watch events live from Japan.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? I still think Scott & Tessa should be two-time Olympic Champions, definitely underscored in Sochi.

Ryan P. (@jetsfan_85)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I used to compete from ages 15-17 and casually skated for years later. Just got back into it this year (31y.o now). I watch every GP competition of the year as well as Canadian and American Nationals etc.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Bourne/Kraatz River Dance 1998 Worlds…they should have won gold.

Sharon (@RosaCotton) | Tumblr
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I became a year-round figure skating fan when my roommate and I watched Skate America, and I fell head-over-heels for Davis/White’s Die Fledermaus. Ice dance remains my favorite discipline (men a close second). Having followed the ShibSibs for five years, I was so thrilled for them winning silver at Worlds with two fantastic programs. So excited to see what will happen in ice dance this season!

Taryn (@tleeh)
Tell us a little about your experiences with figure skating or as a fan. I started skating at age 3; quit at age 10 when lessons were at 5 am. I’ve always watched! I’ve attended 2 Skate Canadas, 1 Worlds and one Canadian Nationals. I plan to attend Canadian Nationals this year.
What’s your favorite grossly underscored skate of the last five years? Weaver/Poje Worlds 2016
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