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Thread: Daisuke Takahashi Talks About The Worlds And The Future

  1. #16
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Thank you mot. I am glad to know that there is a Japanese word for "OK-ish."

    I appreciated Takahashi's directness on the isuue of momentum and "winning the practices."

    I think throughout the season, Patrick was expected to win the world title. I watched his performance at the Canadian Nationals and official practice in Moscow, and I felt that was going to happen. I could not change the momentum. I could not even make people believe that I was the one to challenge Patrick; I lost to him at that stage.

  2. #17
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    Mot, thank you so much for translating the article for us, it's always great to understand from the skaters' perspective.

    Mathman, can you explain what do you mean by "winning the practices" as I have no idea what it is?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I appreciated Takahashi's directness on the isuue of momentum and "winning the practices."

  3. #18
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    "Winning the practices" means this. The judges attend all the official practices and take notes. The skaters that do well in the official practices become entreched in the judges' minds before the actual competition begins. Sometimes the impression is so strong that the skater who has a good practice begins the competition with a few points in the bag already in the minds of the judges.

    A good example was Shizuka Arakawa at the 2006 Olympics. Irina Slutskaya built up virtually unstoppable momentum leading up to the 2006 Olympics. But she started to falter at the end, perhaps due to exhaustion and chronic illness. She lost the Grand Prix Final to Mao Asada and was starting to slip out of the favorite's seat.

    When the Olympic practices began, Arakawa was landing triple-triples right and left. Slutskaya and Cohen were struggling. Arakawa established her dominance in the judge's minds. When it came to the actual performace, in fact Arakawa omitted both of the planned triple-triples that she had practiced. But it didn't matter. She was the triple-triple queen and won the gold medal.

    This is why skaters show up at official practices with all guns blazing. They know that the competition has already begun.

  4. #19
    Like subtlety in ice dancing Serious Business's Avatar
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    Another example is Katarina Witt, who was known for staring down rivals during practices, and cutting off their jump paths to screw with their heads. It was supposedly a huge factor in her win over Debi Thomas in the Battle of the Carmens.

  5. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    "Winning the practices" means this. The judges attend all the official practices and take notes. The skaters that do well in the official practices become entreched in the judges' minds before the actual competition begins. Sometimes the impression is so strong that the skater who has a good practice begins the competition with a few points in the bag already in the minds of the judges.

    A good example was Shizuka Arakawa at the 2006 Olympics. Irina Slutskaya built up virtually unstoppable momentum leading up to the 2006 Olympics. But she started to falter at the end, perhaps due to exhaustion and chronic illness. She lost the Grand Prix Final to Mao Asada and was starting to slip out of the favorite's seat.

    When the Olympic practices began, Arakawa was landing triple-triples right and left. Slutskaya and Cohen were struggling. Arakawa established her dominance in the judge's minds. When it came to the actual performace, in fact Arakawa omitted both of the planned triple-triples that she had practiced. But it didn't matter. She was the triple-triple queen and won the gold medal.

    This is why skaters show up at official practices with all guns blazing. They know that the competition has already begun.
    Is that why Joubert only did his jumps and nothing else in his Worlds official practice?

    I think skaters show the judges what they are capable of but judges still have to judge by the competition skate. But skaters can use the practices to intimidate the rivals which was what Arakawa did. Other times, the competitors are simply put in awe and worries and conciously or unconsciously concede before the competition, or they end up not focusing and commiting errors.

  6. #21
    Six Point Zero Krislite's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    "Winning the practices" means this. The judges attend all the official practices and take notes. The skaters that do well in the official practices become entreched in the judges' minds before the actual competition begins. Sometimes the impression is so strong that the skater who has a good practice begins the competition with a few points in the bag already in the minds of the judges.

    A good example was Shizuka Arakawa at the 2006 Olympics. Irina Slutskaya built up virtually unstoppable momentum leading up to the 2006 Olympics. But she started to falter at the end, perhaps due to exhaustion and chronic illness. She lost the Grand Prix Final to Mao Asada and was starting to slip out of the favorite's seat.

    When the Olympic practices began, Arakawa was landing triple-triples right and left. Slutskaya and Cohen were struggling. Arakawa established her dominance in the judge's minds. When it came to the actual performace, in fact Arakawa omitted both of the planned triple-triples that she had practiced. But it didn't matter. She was the triple-triple queen and won the gold medal.

    This is why skaters show up at official practices with all guns blazing. They know that the competition has already begun.
    Do the judges always attend the official practices or just for certain competitions? Do they watch most/all of the skaters or just the medal contenders?

    I don't understand why this practice is permitted, since it does leave an impression on the judges that can color their judgment during the actual competition.

  7. #22
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    In fact the only time Arakawa did a triple triple the whole Olympic season was the Japanese Nationals free skate when she did a 3S/3T. Her reputation for triple triples that season was the past and practices!!!

  8. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by fscric View Post
    Mathman, can you explain what do you mean by "winning the practices" as I have no idea what it is?
    My take on that is "reputation scoring."

    Patrick admitted as much after Skate Canada when he said something like," the judges saw me in practice and know I can do those jumps."

    The problem as I see it is that Patrick did not do those jumps very well in the actual competition.

    He won SC on reputation. That is what Dai is talking about. Evan won the '09 WC so naturally the next season judges began boosting his PCS.
    By the time Vancouver came around one would think Evan was one of the great artistic skaters based on his PCS.

  9. #24
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    I'm sorry I don't see how Skate Canada was relevant to Patrick's win at the World and I surely hope Daisuke didn't mean what you and Mathman inferred. I don't want to speculate on Daisuke's mindset but if, after seeing Patrick's National performances and his formal practices at The World, he felt he couldn't win because of Patrick's Skate Canada skates, I'd be very disappointed. I hope Mot can give more insight on this.

  10. #25
    Custom Title demarinis5's Avatar
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    ^
    You do realize that how folks infer or interpret an interview is only their opinion.
    Lets not make this a Dai vs. Patrick thread.

  11. #26
    Banned janetfan's Avatar
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    ^
    I don't see comments here that make this a "Dai vs Patrick" thread.

    Dai's comments can certainly be interpreted different ways. My comment is just my opinion and I believe Dai saw Patrick fall four times at SC and still win. He saw him fall at Rostelcup and saw him qualify for the GPF with two lacklustre GP performances.

    Dai, like many of us saw Patrick winning the WC as inevitable. If the judges were not quite convinced then politicing lead by Lori helped assure a less than stellar Patrick would prevail at Worlds.

    Fortunately Patrick skated well at Worlds and earned his victory by the way he skated saving skating from more controversy.

    Skating has always been like this. It is only a real sport in the minds of those who don't follow many other sports.

    In the SuperBowl if you drop a pass in the endzone you don't get credit for a touchdown even if you ran a perfect route, fooled the defense and were wide open.

    Partial credit is big in CoP skating and reputation is exactly the same as it was in the 6.0 era.

    If Yuna had not disappointed Speedy by sitting out the GP season she would have won Worlds. If it was close ISU was never going to give her the Gold because Miki, the good soldier earned it by skating the GP and 4CC.

    I like Miki but felt her win at Worlds was very politically driven.

  12. #27
    Custom Title demarinis5's Avatar
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    ^ That is your opinion and my comment was my opinion. Of course folks can interpret
    Dai's interview anyway they wish, but it is still an opinion.

  13. #28
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    Thank you so much, mot! That was a candid, warm, and heart-felt article from Dai! He is so admirable!

    Quote Originally Posted by Hernando View Post
    Skating has always been like this. It is only a real sport in the minds of those who don't follow many other sports.
    I fail to see why it's not a real sport? If we judge figure skating on cleanness, like some posters pushed and suggested, I could agree with you. But the actual judging is not. The fact that the most athletic skaters win, not the most artistic skaters win, or not the cleanest performances win, says all. It is a real sport. But it is an unique real sport with art involved.
    Last edited by Bluebonnet; 05-20-2011 at 09:03 AM.

  14. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Krislite View Post
    Do the judges always attend the official practices or just for certain competitions? Do they watch most/all of the skaters or just the medal contenders?
    As I understand it the judges are expected to attend as many of the practice sessions as possible. I do not think that it is strictly required in the competition rules, but the judges like to do it to get a head's up on what to expect.

    Similarly, the skaters must submit a jump card before the actual competition. This alerts the tech panel as to what jumps to expect the skater to attempt. If the skater changes his mind during the performance and does something different, this puts an extra burden on the tech panel to call what they see rather than what they expect.

    I think the reason for this questionable practice is that figure skating judging is too hard. With so many things going on in rapid-fire sequence, if you come in cold you will not be able to process it all.

    Another strange thing, especially at the lower levels, is that the judges are supposed to give advice to the skaters and their coaches as to how the skater might improve his/her scores. This seems like a blurring of the lines or responsibility, and could easily lead to the perception of favoritism.

    The CoP actually helps out a little here. The skaters can see for themselves from the protocols where they can do better, so the judges don't have to take them aside and give them a head's up.

  15. #30
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fscric View Post
    I'm sorry I don't see how Skate Canada was relevant to Patrick's win at the World and I surely hope Daisuke didn't mean what you and Mathman inferred. I don't want to speculate on Daisuke's mindset but if, after seeing Patrick's National performances and his formal practices at The World, he felt he couldn't win because of Patrick's Skate Canada skates, I'd be very disappointed. I hope Mot can give more insight on this.
    I think Takahashi's own words are quite clear. It is not so much Skate Canada as Patrick's performance at Canadian Nationals, together with what he accomplished in Worlds practices, that made Daisuke feel that

    I could not even make people believe that I was the one to challenge Patrick; I lost to him at that stage.
    The context of the quote was Daisuke's boot problems. He was saying that as defending world champion and knowing he couldn't win, it didn't really matter much whether he was second or fifth.

    This is not a Takahashi versus Chan thing. This is a compliment to Chan, that he was so dominant this year, getting stronger and stronger as the season progressed, that there was no chance for anyone even to be considered a legitimate challener to him. IMHO Chan fans should be pleased with this assessment, even as, say, Dick Button fans should have been pleased that Button was way out in from of his competitors in the 1950s or Sonia henie fans should have been pleased in the 1930s.

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