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Thread: Thoughts about Tonia Kwiatkowski

  1. #1
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    Thoughts about Tonia Kwiatkowski

    In another thread I mentioned that Tonia might have been a good candidate to switch to pairs. She didn't seem to have much success in her amateur career. This made me wonder what everyone else thought about her.

    Any thoughts?

  2. #2
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    she had a great skate at Ice Wars the year she was involved... her Marilynn Monroe was very cute... if I'm not mistaken she was up against Yuka Sato...

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    Arm Chair Skate Fan show 42's Avatar
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    I always admired her determination and work ethics. Her skating, for me, was mechanical, too planned and rehersed artistically. 42

  4. #4
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    When she was on, Tonia had some wonderful triple jumps and a very energetic presentation for her competitive performances.

    She had the misfortune of being one of many highly talented women in the figure skating "pool", and as such, she remained a rather small fish in a large pond.

    I also thought that Tonia lacked the competitive toughness that is needed to win major titles. This isn't meant as a criticism, as Tonia always comes across as an incredibly nice, sweet, down-to-earth person. And I'm certainly not insinuating that Michelle, Tara, Kristi, or the other women who have won US titles were some kind of mental "terminators". However, these women were able to harnass the mental focus, the confidence, as well as the technical and artistic skills that are all needed to win. Tonia just fell sort of being able to package all of these elements in her skating.

    Tonia's coach Carol Heiss once said (to paraphrase), "I sometimes
    thought that Tonia was just too darned nice for her own good. A woman has to have a killer instinct to win, and Tonia never developed that."

  5. #5
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    I wasn't a fan of Tonia's until 1996. There did seem to be a somewhat mechanical, rehearsed feel to her skating. Yet, it was at the 1996 Nationals that she really impressed me and won me over. Her "Bladerunner" FP was so strong and elegant at that competition. She wasn't on the same level as Michelle or Chen Lu, but she did have determination and a pleasant style. I'm affraid I didn't understand her marks at the 96 or 98 Worlds. She was clean and methodical in Edmonton (she should have been at least 6th)...and really gave it some heart in Minneapolis (I would have personally placed her 4th in the long). But, to go out so strongly at the World Championships was wonderful for her and sixth place is certainly impressive. I miss Tonia, especially at Nationals. She was always so reliable in the short and a wildcard in the long program.

  6. #6
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    Here is another thing I've always wondered about...perhaps I misheard, but didn't she say she "had" to retire when she did because it was her last year to be eligible due to her age? This really confused me. I didn't think there was an age limit for competing. Is that correct? Also, no one has commented, but I still think she could have been a good pairs skater.

  7. #7
    Old school Tim fan
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    There is no age limit. She retired because she felt it was the right time to do so.

    Anyways, I've been a big fan of hers since 1995 when I first saw her at Nationals. My favorite programs of hers were M. Butterfly and Bladerunner/Day One.

  8. #8
    Custom Title IDLERACER's Avatar
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    I thought she was good in this:


    Click on the image for more info.

  9. #9
    Keeper of Michelle's Nose berthes ghost's Avatar
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    Tonia might be a bit big for pairs, which seems to be doiminated by huge guys and tiny gals vis-a-vis the throws and overhead lifts.

  10. #10
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    Originally posted by berthes ghost
    Tonia might be a bit big for pairs, which seems to be doiminated by huge guys and tiny gals vis-a-vis the throws and overhead lifts.
    Good point!

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