Just to explain---I didn't check the article again when I responded to antmanb because in the overall scheme of things, I felt that this point was not important to what's being debated. I didn't care whether I got it wrong or the coach got it wrong. And so I just put blame on myself for being wrong because that seemed more diplomatic and far more likely. But I recognize that it is important to strive to be accurate.
Anyway, regarding the fact that the coach got it wrong, well if this JSF coach is thinking of Mao's interest only, it doesn't matter if this proposal passes or not; in fact, it's better if it doesn't get passed, as I have already argued. Its only importance from JSF's point of view would be the meaning it holds as a symbolic gesture, that they did the decent thing and submitted a proposal that might prevent figure skating from regressing. If ISU doesn't see that, then so be it, would be the attitude that JSF can adopt with free conscience.
I wouldn't even be surprised if JSF were not to submit this proposal when it comes down to it. Why should they, after all? They'd only be accused of being overly nationalistic or something like that.
Last edited by hurrah; 03-30-2010 at 01:06 PM.
If the proposal is accepted, which it won't, it may in fact make Mao even worse off. Instead of getting credit for a well executed Double Axel, her Triple Axel attempt may be downgraded and resulting in negative GOE instead of positive GOE. So instead of gaining an advantage, she could easily lose 3 points or more on the Double Axel due to GOE go from say +2 to -1.4
If the proposal is not accepted, Mao Asada still needs to demonstrate her Triple Axel is reliable and not UR. Right now, everytime she does a Triple Axel, it makes the judges worried. "Is it fully rotated or is it not?" If they are scared or unsure, she may or may not credit for it but the judges will be hesitant to award her positive GOE, which discounts the overall value of the element as somone else who does a good Triple Lutz could easily match the base value of a Triple Axel.
Let's face it, the reason why Asada won the 2010 Worlds with only one ratified Triple Axel out of three attempts is because pretty much because the entire field bombed. Kim missed her layback spin = 0, Spiral downgraded to 1, UR Triple Flip, fell on Triple Salchow and poped a Double Axel. Lepisto popped three Triples and stepped out on a Double Axel. Miki Ando fell on a Triple Lutz combo in SP and etc. Oh and Rochette was absent. If any of those girls skated up to their potential, last year's outcome may repeat itself again, which is Asada left off the World podium.
You don't dominate this sport because of one jump, to beleive so is to completely fail to understand how this sport works, especially when that said jump is not even very well mastered.
I totally agree with Wally.
What about Mao's triple axel in Guiness Record??
Personally I think Mao's strategy of focussing on 3A was not wise. She should work on other jumps and jump combinations to be a well-rounded skater. That does not mean that I'm happy with judges' approaches to scrutinize specific skaters just because they decided to go for a harder jump, and I think double punishment (< + negative GOE) is way too harsh and unfair. I'm against half-way jump marks though; Underrotation should be reflected in GOE only IMO. Of course there should be a range, say within a quarter or half a quarter under rotation, to be ratified. The final score of a underrotated but otherwise well executed jump, quad or 3A, should get a little bit higher mark than a well executed tripe or 2A. If it has a underrotation more than the allowed range, down grade it. This way, only skaters with reasonablly confidence about the jump would try it; risk taking is still encouraged, but not abused.
Quadruple Yay~~~~~~~~~~ for all of Wallylutz's comments!
Thanks a million!
I don't think the proposed rule change would help or hurt any specific skater. Every skater would face the same choice. Should I work on my triple Axel and a triple-triple to try to get more points, or should I back off to jumps I know I can do and not take a chance on under-rotating, etc?
If a skater says, hey, no fair -- Mao has a triple Axel and I don't -- well, go work on your triple Axel for next season.
If Mao says, hey this new rule is hurting me because i keep falling on my triple Axel -- well, practice more or leave it out.
I am curious, on a conceptual level, what the SP is supposed to serve as its purpose, and why there are certain requirements and restrictions in it (e.g. the required solo double Axel.)
I agree with Mathman that I don't get why the proposal will favor Mao anyways, since she still needs to get them ratified to get any advantage (not much difference from now).
Janet Lynn was the best free skater anyone had ever seen or heard tell of, but she couldn't win because she couldn't do figures. This was bad PR because audiences would see pretty Janet skating circles around Trixie Schuba every time out, but when it came to figures Schuba was the greatest of all time, utterly without peer or rival.
So this was the start of the phasing out of figures and adding a "short program" which was supposed to...well, I'm not really sure what, but anyway, it would be something that Lynn could do better than Schuba.
Alas, it didn't work. Schuba retired after the 1972 Olympics and at 1973 Worlds Lynn skated her best figures ever, but fell twice in the short program and lost to Karen Magnusen.
Here is a clip that tells about Janet, Trixie, the intro of the SP and reduction in value of the compulsory figures.
and here is a clip of Trixie and Janet from '72 the figures competion:
Can you imagine watching 50 skaters doing this? :indiff:
Rules were changed to accomadate the fans who became very enamored with free skating as opposed to compulsory figures.
In the case of the axel rule I believe it will change when more ladies are including it.
Mao tried three in Torino and had one ratified. Did any other Ladies try a 3A ?
Last edited by janetfan; 03-30-2010 at 06:15 PM.
To hit a couple of high points in the conceptual development of the short program:
Originally singles skaters did compulsory figures and freestyle programs. Pairs skaters only did free programs.
Around 1960, a short program was introduced for pairs so they would have to demonstrate some required moves that all pairs would have to do, and not just whatever they were good at.
Meanwhile, there was a movement afoot to increase the importance of freestyle skating and decrease the importance of figures for singles skaters.
In 1972-73, a short program was introduced for singles. It was only worth 20% of the total score at first, but short plus long program together added up to more than the figures.
I believe that double axel was always a required element for both senior men and ladies in the SP, until 1998-99 when men were allowed to do triple axel instead.
The other jumps either rotated specified takeoffs every year or allowed the skaters to choose (at least one jump in the combo has always been the skater's choice). When other specific takeoffs were required in the 1970s and 80s, they were required as double jumps, on the theory that every senior skater should be able to execute them. In the later 1990s and 2000s the jump out of steps rotates for juniors among loop, flip, and lutz, and skaters have the choice to do double or triple.
When the junior SP was introduced, I think at first both junior men and junior ladies had to do single axel, then the men were allowed or required to do double axel, then junior ladies were allowed and then required to do double, and very recently junior men have been allowed to do triple axel as the solo axel.
The spin requirements have also sometimes been very specific and other times offered skaters more options.
The shape of the step sequence was originally specified. That ended in 1988-89, which is also when the ladies' spiral sequence and the second step sequence for men were added.
So the requirements have always been either something that everyone was expected to be able to do, a choice between easier elements everyone could do or harder elements that would separate the top contenders, or free choice.
But there has always been some kind of required axel.
Why is the axel considered so important? I can only guess it's because the forward takeoff is believed to demonstrate skating (edge control) skill more than the other jumps, and not just athleticism.
Anyway, although the restrictiveness of the SP requirements has changed over time, the SP has always been about doing specified elements on demand, with no second chances to try a missed element again and penalties for executing moves not according to the SP requirements. The required elements are chosen to reflect elements that everyone in the field should be able to execute according to the definition, so that skaters could be compared on how well they execute the same moves, or in some cases the same kind of moves with opportunities for the more skilled skaters to show more difficulty within the requirements. Originally it was supposed to be comparing apples to apples -- more recently especially in seniors it might be more like comparing different varieties of apples as skaters choose different triple jumps and different spin variations.
The free program was historically an opportunity for skaters to showcase their own best skills in whatever combination of elements they could fit into the time limit. The only real restrictions were on repeating triple jumps, starting in 1982-83, and later limits on jump combos and sequences. In the mid 1990s there started to be a move toward standardization with recommendations for what would constitute a "well-balanced program," and in the early 2000s there were minimum requirements for each kind of elements (jumps, spins, steps, field moves) with deductions for leaving them out.
Then came the new judging system, and with it much more restrictive limits on how many of each kind of element a skater could include. Some of this is necessary for fairness, so that a good jumper won't rack up points by filling the program with dozens of triple and double jumps and not spend much time on spins or steps, for example. But the result is that the long program content is now almost as regimented as the SP content; it's not really a "free" program any more.
One additional requirement that was added to the long program along with the new system was "an axel-type jump." In the LP, that requirement can be filled by a double axel, a triple axel, a single axel with or without variations, including a one-foot axel (landed on the other foot). The skater can choose whether to fill that requirement with a difficult, high-base-value element, or to use a lower value element and hope to earn +GOE points for quality. Or both. Unlike the short program, there's no penalty for doing a single instead of a double except in the lower base mark.
So again, it seems to be important to the powers-that-be for skaters to demonstrate some mastery of the forward outside jump takeoff. But there's less sense of comparing apples to apples.
Under the current rules, there's a lot less difference in the level of restrictions or requirements between long program and short than there was >20 years ago when SPs were more uniform in their requirements and LPs were more free. The main differences are just in the time limits and number of jump elements. So it's harder to define what the purpose of the short program is. I think it still exists mainly because of tradition and to reward consistency across more than one performance.