This is just in this morning, I am still in shock re: a number of changes that are being proposed. There are so many changes, even I haven't been able to digest all of it. But I thought some of you would be extremely interested to know a few major ones that are coming up, especially if you are a Mao or Yu Na fan.
- Ladies will now be allowed to do a Triple Axel in lieu of a Double Axel in the SHORT PROGRAM
I certainly didn't see this coming, as do many other observers.
In addition, the SP will now consist of 7 required elements, as opposed to 8. Men will be doing only 1 step sequence instead of two. Spiral Sequence will now be removed as a required element for ladies in the SP but will be considered as part of transitions if executed. This change will presumably increase the weight of jumps overall, favoring someone like Brian Joubert for example whose relative poor step sequences hold him back against Chan or Takahashi.
Separate proposal is being made to give a 10% bonus base value for jumps done in a jump combination. For example, Triple Lutz + Triple Toe has a Base Value of 6 + 4 = 10. Under the new proposal, it will now receive a 10% bonus for a total base value of 11, prior to the application of GOE.
Another big change is that men will now be allowed to try two different types of Quads in the SP. Previously, if a skater did, say a Quad Salchow + Triple Toe as a jump combo, he will not be able to do another Quad as a solo jump, even if that Quad is not a Salchow. The proposed change will now allow the said skater to do another Quad as a solo jump provided that it is a different type of Quad. This change will likely push men who are able and willing to include two Quads in the SP. Such change will greatly favor men like Kevin Reynolds who consistently lands two different types of Quads, he will be delighted by this kind of change. But I expect more men will now try to do another Quad other than the Toe Loop as well, this is potentially huge for men.
- No change to the number of elements performed or maximum allowed in the Free Skate but the second Step Sequence for Men will now receive a fixed base value ( ), same goes for the Spiral Sequence in the Free Skate for Ladies
- Spiral Sequence (Ladies) in the FS will now have an All or Nothing clause if the requirement is not fully met
This can be potentially be quite serious and scary IMO because it used to be you will still get some points even if the element is downgraded, but someone like Mirai Nagasu who has had trouble meeting all the requirements in her Spiral could see that element be given a zero for instance.
- Double Axel can only be performed a maximum of two times in the Free Skate, as opposed to three
This last change will hurt someone like Yu-Na Kim the most, who heavily relies on three Double Axels to compensate for the lack of a Triple Loop.
- Moves in the field will now be given extra attention in order to reward transitions
Honestly, a vague clause like this will continued to be ignored in practice and someone like Plushenko will continue to receive outrageous transition marks inconsistent with his level of skating
There will also be a cap on the number of actual entries into the World Championships and all skaters must meet a minimum total score internationally in order to be eligible to enter into the Worlds by their federation. Qualifying Round for certain lower rank skaters will be re-introduced so that top skaters will not have to qualify like before.
There is a lot of changes, I am summarizing the major highlights to give you guys a heads up.