What has happen to the French Ladies? It is quite unfortunate that the Ice Dance and Men's discipline is still strong, while the ladies has dwindle to nothing (no offense to the Dider Girls... I think their lovely). Even the Pairs discipline is stronger, considering Abitbol and B. were the first real strong French Pairs Team.
But honestly, remember the 98' Olympic hype, where the French Ladies were considered strong enough to sweep 3-4-5th place? Even though all the ladies fell apart during that event, they have been a tremendous force and influence in ladies figure skating. Remember Suyra Bonaly amazing win at 94 Europeans, upsetting Biaul before Olympics? Remember Hubert surprise victory over Lipinski at Trophy Lalique in 98? Remember Gusmeroli innovative 2nd Rank "The Mask" program at 97 Worlds (let's not even get into the debate of how it should have been first)?
The French are not only to blame. Look at Russia. Look at Germany. Look at even mid-power houses like Ukraine and Hungary who were once strong in the Ladies division. Then again, perhaps it was the over-bearing French Federation. Remember when they locked out Hubert Coach out of practice?? It's just extra sad since I have always enjoyed the French Ladies.... strong jumpers, awesome programs, and always pushing boundaries.
And here comes another year, another GP event in France, with no strong French Ladies. Any hope in the Juniors? Who knows....maybe someone can tell me. All I have to say is that maybe the French Ladies should fly to Finland and drink some of their water.... because it's working for those girls.
A reminder of what I and many others have miss: