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Thread: International Challenge Cup - The Hague, Mar 8-11

  1. #226
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    2 pence response to your two cents :P

    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    Here's my two cents on Carolina:
    1.) I was definitely irritated last season that Carolina seem to get magic points for watered down content last season.
    2.) That totally changed for me this season and namely because of two very fantastic, well-choreographed programs this season. Both programs really highlight exactly why Carolina is a factored despite the lack of a lutz — the skating skills, ice coverage, speed, etc.
    3.) I'd rather have Carolina's FS here or even from GPF than a very badly-choreographed 7-triple program from Alena Leonova, who basically does three flips.
    4.) I've been talking alot about strategy and management lately, especially in defending Jason Brown, another skater who is very good but is criticized for his current lack of a 3A. Many people see Carolina's team strategy as "giving up" or "playing it safe." In contrast, I see it as more a rebuilding or a redevelopment of confidence, especially since she had an injury. Even when she was being a train wreak in 2010, you can tell that judges still acknowledged her skating skills/artistry. I think her team realized that she need to rebuild her jump arsenal, but as long as they had programs that highlighted her strengths, that she would still do really well. I think the strategy has worked. It is not her fault that her competitors could not rise to the challenge (or they weren't there do so). I think she will get the Lutz back. We're already seeing a second flip and she has been able to skate relatively clean programs; so I'm hoping that the Lutz is next.
    5.) I get that for some of you it's much more fun to see 7-triple programs with 3-3. But for me, I'd like to see a well-executed 7-triple program with 3-3. I'd say Elizaveta T. has been the closest to that goal, but even then there are weaknesses — she still doesn't have great ice coverage and her choreography is not as
    developed. I'm a big fan of Gracie Gold as well, but she is also still weak on the PCS side (namely choreography/interpretation; she has decent skating skills). Adelina and Julia are close to the whole package also. If all those girls develop more on the PCS AND maintain that tech content, Carolina will not be able to win with her current technical content.
    1) I'd argue the same with Ando's FS program last year with back loading jumps and no 3:3. While it is strategically smart, she built up excellent momentum leading to the championship like Carolina is apparently able to do this year. Ando's technical program also paved the way for the 'Carolina Standard' this year. The state of Ladies... urgh!

    I know people's explanation and sympathies about why she left out her lutz and why her jump content wasn't as strong because of injuries blah blah blah. But this is a sporting championship at the highest level, and it should be about what is actually delivered on the ice on the day, irrespective of who it is by, why, and how. If it is the gold standard of ladies figure skating, frankly this ceased to be about the sport anymore...but then it never is, is it?

    2) and 3) With no Yuna or Ando challenging her and Mao in a sad unstable state, she has the full support of the Europeans and the previously repressed Carolina Fans who has a real shot at regaining the championship for the 1st time outside Asia in 6 years, and back in Europe in 8 years. Carolina is a good skater, a great skater in certain areas, but her score is outrageous given what was put out there. You look at her FS and then Yuna Kim's FS at the Olympics that set the world record for ladies figure skating, be it technical content, artistry, depth of musical interpretations/realization, the difference is only 0.82 apart? Really? Wow!

    4) The 'rebuilding confidence' and 'strategic smart' are water down excuses and discredit figure skating as a sport. It is easy to rebuild confidence when you have the judges on your side, and you just have to stay on your feet. It is about the people you know rather than what you are doing. Is that why we watch sport? Or merely formalities watching the popular girl getting her prom queen crown because she has the right superficial package?

    5) I agree with you entirely on this. For me Juniors are far more exciting this year. Watching Liza and Julia blossoming in front of the world getting their creds especially Liza almost humiliate the seniors never mind her physical limitations means naturally she does have less ice coverage. These girls remind me the ethos of bringing their best, taking risks, putting out the stuff they can be proud of even at risk of failing. Doing it from the ground up. Win based on the merit of their sporting/artistic achievements rather than taking advantage of any particular favoritism or being 'strategically smart'. I am still hopeful for Mao/Akiko can put their 3A/3:3 out there and EARN a gold rather than someone like Carolina who seems consistently able to float above everyone on her exclusive Carolina express.

    And oh.. I did watch her in Moscow, she is no way as fast as people claims, though was faster than Ando. When her score come up, everyone on my section were disgruntled and sooo soo surprised including some Canadians and Americans. Alena on the other hand at least tried desperately hard, and I'd always want to give people extra bonus for bother trying.
    Last edited by os168; 03-13-2012 at 07:59 AM.

  2. #227
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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    But this is a sporting championship at the highest level, and it should be about what is actually delivered on the ice on the day, irrespective of who it is by, why, and how.
    Right. And it's a figure skating contest. A contest on who can deliver the best package of technical content which includes a variety of different jumps, spins, steps, spirals, and other blade-on-ice skills, with the best overall quality, with difficult combinations of skills, executed in time to music to show technical control of the timing, and if possible with extra qualities of performance, musical expressiveness, and program construction to add "artistry" to the technical feats.

    It's not a triple lutz contest, or even a who-can-land-the-hardest-jumps contest.

    If it is the gold standard of ladies figure skating, frankly this ceased to be about the sport anymore...but then it never is, is it?
    What do you mean by "this"? A performance that is good to very good on all skills except for one kind of difficult jump?

    Alena on the other hand at least tried desperately hard, and I'd always want to give people extra bonus for bother trying.
    I thought you wanted this to be a sporting championship at the highest level, about what is actually delivered on the ice on the day.

    It's not a trying hard contest either.

    Yes, skating with energy, attack, commitment, whatever you want to call it, is worth more than "phoning it in." But that's a completely separate issue from jump content.

  3. #228
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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    I know people's explanation and sympathies about why she left out her lutz and why her jump content wasn't as strong because of injuries blah blah blah. But this is a sporting championship at the highest level, and it should be about what is actually delivered on the ice on the day, irrespective of who it is by, why, and how. If it is the gold standard of ladies figure skating, frankly this ceased to be about the sport anymore...but then it never is, is it?
    I'm with you. Many people say Takahashi has already passed his prime because he is not as consistant with his quads as before he tore his ACL despite of his superb skating skills and artistry. (I hope he will get his quads back and prove them wrong, though.) For Kostner, "Oh poor Carolina, she had injuries! She doesn't need a 3Lz because she is such a lovely skater with great skating skills and artistry." What a double standard!

    I don't blame general public if they don't take Ladies Singles little more seriously than they do Miss Universe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeko666 View Post
    I'm with you. Many people say Takahashi has already passed his prime because he is not as consistant with his quads as before he tore his ACL despite of his superb skating skills and artistry. (I hope he will get his quads back and prove them wrong, though.) For Kostner, "Oh poor Carolina, she had injuries! She doesn't need a 3Lz because she is such a lovely skater with great skating skills and artistry." What a double standard!

    I don't blame general public if they don't take Ladies Singles little more seriously than they do Miss Universe.
    I don't understand your point. The fact is that there is not a "Patrick Chan" in the ladies' field at the moment (None of the girls competing right now in the senior circuit has both very difficult technical elements and great artistry). the level of men's competition is way higher: if you're not doing a quad you can't be on top, and you could lose even with that. So the comparison with Takahashi doesn't make sense for me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikeko666 View Post
    I'm with you. Many people say Takahashi has already passed his prime because he is not as consistant with his quads as before he tore his ACL despite of his superb skating skills and artistry. (I hope he will get his quads back and prove them wrong, though.) For Kostner, "Oh poor Carolina, she had injuries! She doesn't need a 3Lz because she is such a lovely skater with great skating skills and artistry." What a double standard!
    The injury is gone (thank God) this was concerning last year...she's not doing the lutz because she's not secure on and I don't see any problem on that as I didn't find a problem for Kim not having the loop and Asada not having the salchow and a proper lutz! AGAIN there's much more in figure skating than a single jump! Otherwise it would have been a jump competition..no figure...

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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    Carolina is a good skater, a great skater in certain areas, but her score is outrageous given what was put out there. You look at her FS and then Yuna Kim's FS at the Olympics that set the world record for ladies figure skating, be it technical content, artistry, depth of musical interpretations/realization, the difference is only 0.82 apart? Really? Wow!
    When carolina skates as she skatend at the challange cup she's not in any way inferior to kim! The program she skated was GORGEOUS! The best I've ever seen! However it wasn't an offcial competition and scores in general were higher than they would have been (still 70 points in components were well deserved)

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    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    Right. And it's a figure skating contest. A contest on who can deliver the best package of technical content which includes a variety of different jumps, spins, steps, spirals, and other blade-on-ice skills, with the best overall quality, with difficult combinations of skills, executed in time to music to show technical control of the timing, and if possible with extra qualities of performance, musical expressiveness, and program construction to add "artistry" to the technical feats.

    It's not a triple lutz contest, or even a who-can-land-the-hardest-jumps contest.
    Yes and No. (Hi gkelly... respect to you, but I am going to have to be cheeky here )

    Yes it is about the package, therefore a package that is decidedly lack in the critical areas that determine it as a sport is definitely NOT a complete package. Had Carolina upped the technical layout to be a comparable program to previous championship winning content, no one else (or at least me) would have complained. I did quite early in the year when I see what is happening, and that hasn't changed.

    As for difficulties being unimportant, try tell that to Plushy and explain why all the men are killing themselves currently going for the quads (ok I exaggerate) and why Patrick should win over Daisuke, why Midori is the greatest ladies figure skater in Asia (little inside joke to myself via FSU), and why Mao went to the extreme length aiming for the 3A glory, and why many at least attempt 3:3s while Yuna is still competing.

    Without these 'hard things', let's might as well have Protopopovs, Torville and Dean et al coming back to compete in singles, because surely they are in for a shot for the gold given they are better in the 'everything else' area. Or maybe that is the way it should be?


    I thought you wanted this to be a sporting championship at the highest level, about what is actually delivered on the ice on the day.

    It's not a trying hard contest either.

    Yes, skating with energy, attack, commitment, whatever you want to call it, is worth more than "phoning it in." But that's a completely separate issue from jump content.
    If Carolina putting out the best content and committed performance on the day regardless of so called 'effort', she deserve to win hands down. At the same time, the scoring should reflect accurately on what she put out there instead of the latest over compensation for the so called 'momentum building', it ends up just lazy or crazy judging from TPTB. Other than being blatantly unfair to other competitors who aims for risk taking content to be competitive like Ashley, Akiko and Mao, it does not do Carolina any favours when her legitimacy might be called into question when her content clearly does not stack up to those before her. Unfortunately for the judges, there are those with a brain, eyes, ears and yes harsh cynicism annoyed at them pulling the same shtick as last year playing Speedy's champion merry-go-round.

    I am not a hater, just want a fair contest.
    Last edited by os168; 03-13-2012 at 12:55 PM.

  8. #233
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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    Other than being blatantly unfair to other competitors who aims for risk taking content to be competitive like Ashley, Akiko and Mao, it does not do Carolina any favours when her legitimacy might be called into question when her content clearly does not stack up to those before her.
    Who's being unfair to Ashley Akiko and Mao? This season Carolina hasn't faced them exception for Akiko who didn't skate well at the final and deservedly ended up in second! And it's not that they are perfect and carolina is not! Mao has no salchow, no proper lutz and she had the 3axel but know is not so secure...Ashley has big nice flutz and even if she has strong and secure jumps she lack in artistry (even if I like her LP A LOT)..Akiko is the strongest right now but she tend to make some mistakes here and there her programs cannot be compare to carolina's IMHO! Still, the competition hasn't even started so I see no points in saying that she's favoured and the others are not! She won fairly every competition she entered. And even if Worlds are in Europe it doesn't mean anything..otherwise she would have medalled in turin at worlds...

  9. #234
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    Then none of the last champions should have been rewarded with a gold medal either: Ando was missing a 3F, Asada a true 3Lz and 3S (and many would argue her 3A being clean), Kim the 3Lo if I understand everyone's arguments here (the Gold Standard for ladies should be a full set of triple jumps through Lz and a 2A). I don't see that any of these ladies took "risk" either since they have all had issues with one or more jumps and didn't include a full compliment of jumps.

    Carolina was given credit for what she actually accomplished on the ice. Just because it was a huge score doesn't mean it was scored incorrectly or she's being held up or her PCS is being boosted because she's European. What she did technically, she did well and she delivered it well with fantastic speed and edge flow. The program really fits her ice persona and highlights her strengths, which is really what you want a choreographer and coach to do when they layout a program.

    Please, tell me who you think SHOULD beat Kostner this year? Leonova? She does 3Flz (and makes not much of an attempt to get on an outside edge on her approach) and has less polish to what she DOES accomplish. Asada? She looks worn out and tired and definitely needing a break; she has a 3Flz, under-rotated/downgraded 3A (most of the time), and typically problems with her 3S. Suzuki? I might agree with you there IF she delivers. Wagner? She at least has made an attempt to fix the 3Flz and on a good day Flatzes now but she, too, would need to deliver (at least like she did at 4CC) for me to say yes, she would deserve to beat Kostner. Czsiny? Not with the current state of her skating. Murakami? Again, needs polish and to fix some of her inconsistencies.

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    I think Carolina would definitely be a deserving World Champion The way she skates and all, it's champion material. I just hope that if she wins worlds, it'll be with a clean performance (not like her 2008 silver with all the hands down etc). I would love for Wagner and Suzuki to be the other medalists Possibly if Kostner is unsteady and misses things, either or both (skating lights out themselves) should beat her.

    Leonova as World Champion? Oh please no!! Though that's mostly because of a personal dislike of her skating style. If Czisny could medal that would be huge. I really expected/hoped for her to medal last year, it looks so much less likely this year, but it'd be amazing if she proved everyone wrong.

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    1. Scores aren't static. For example, if we compare Chan's 2010 GPF winning LP with Dai's 2008 4CC, Dai seems to win by only one point. But judges were using two different standards, and Chan had about a five-eight point advantage over Dai just on the rule changes alone. So os168, you can't compare scores across seasons.

    2. But even presuming that, I don't know why you'd be so dismissive of Kostner's PCS. Is it just that it's close to Kim's two year-past standard? What score should she get for PCS and why?

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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    3) With no Yuna or Ando challenging her and Mao in a sad unstable state, she has the full support of the Europeans and the previously repressed Carolina Fans who has a real shot at regaining the championship for the 1st time outside Asia in 6 years, and back in Europe in 8 years. Carolina is a good skater, a great skater in certain areas, but her score is outrageous given what was put out there. You look at her FS and then Yuna Kim's FS at the Olympics that set the world record for ladies figure skating, be it technical content, artistry, depth of musical interpretations/realization, the difference is only 0.82 apart? Really? Wow!
    I don't understand why you are so outraged. Kim had the best combination of technical content and presentation and won convincingly that night, but since when was her programs at the Olympics consindered the golden standard for artistry and depth of musical interpretation? Kostner is just every bit as good in all of the PCS and better in some. I personally find Carolina's presentation more genuine and her musicality more natural, less put on. The choreography of her programs is also artistically more mature and complex than Kim's.

    4) The 'rebuilding confidence' and 'strategic smart' are water down excuses and discredit figure skating as a sport. It is easy to rebuild confidence when you have the judges on your side, and you just have to stay on your feet.
    Can you give an example of where Kostner is being overscored and why you think so?
    Last edited by shine; 03-13-2012 at 10:30 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ImaginaryPogue View Post
    1. Scores aren't static. For example, if we compare Chan's 2010 GPF winning LP with Dai's 2008 4CC, Dai seems to win by only one point. But judges were using two different standards, and Chan had about a five-eight point advantage over Dai just on the rule changes alone. So os168, you can't compare scores across seasons.

    2. But even presuming that, I don't know why you'd be so dismissive of Kostner's PCS. Is it just that it's close to Kim's two year-past standard? What score should she get for PCS and why?
    I realise about the scores are not static, but I am amazed at how different degrees of variance (overmarking/ undermarking) from one competition to the next aren't checked and recaliberated against each other based on a 'universal' standard on what it 'should be' if it is marked correctly. COP need to resolve the 'latency' and 'expectations' problems of human judging that are prone to easy mistakes based on 'emotional biases' and 'preconception'.

    Koster did the best skate on the day hands down. I have no problem with that. It is probably one of the best skate of her life even with one hands down but imo still lack in finesse and variance (change of mood, pace, depth of full realisation, tone etc) I look for in a FS program, which this year's best belong to Ashley Wagner's black swan. While you can't compare Mozart to Tchaikovsky, it is a matter who fulfilled their program brief better.

    My problem is the scoring, the judging and the pattern of momentum building which ends up spiralled out of control and continued to get unchecked, so by the end of the year it is no longer a level playing field for others to compete fairly. Which again, I must emphasis should be based on what is delivered that day not and not the 'perception' what the ranking should be based on previous performances. Otherwise the weakness of human judging get easily exploited when the small buffer of variances ends up to being inflation from one competition to the next that went unchecked. Figure skating cease to be a sporting performance worthy of Olympic standard sporting fairness, where everyone should able to compete fairly 'where ever you are' and 'who ever you may be'. It ends up unfair to other skaters who compete at the world championship that might not have the momentum but has the the goods which they were able to deliver ON THE DAY.

    Put it this way, this fact the score of this FS program with 1 hands down is 0.82 points different from Kim's FS error free high degree of everything program at the Olympics is a warning sign of the things to come. Yes the seasoned watchers who are familiar with how things are have longed accepted the system, but imo many are too close to it to be objective. To any outsider who likes believe there's still a some degree of fairness, transparency and sporting integrity in the system. Looking at stats, looks at the comparison, it just get mind boggling. Is it any wonder why the sport is losing fans because they believes it is fixed?

    Let me put in another way, if Kim won the Olympic skate over Mao with Carolina's output/technical content based mostly on high PCS there'd outrage all over. So what makes it different today? Has 2 years of rule changing and values changing made such a huge difference. Is this right for the state of ladies figure skating? Or are these scores somewhat artificially inflated to give an illusion of something that is in fact incorrect or off the mark?

    It is either the previous competition hasn't been marked correctly, or this competition hasn't. If something is not right, why arn't TPTB looking to correct things. Because if they don't, the next panel of judges would use this competition as a bench mark to mark future competitions, and that is why it can get ridiculous.

    Quote Originally Posted by shine View Post
    I don't understand why you are so outraged. Kim had the best combination of technical content and presentation and won convincingly that night, but since when was her programs at the Olympics consindered the golden standard for artistry and depth of musical interpretation? Kostner is just every bit as good in all of the PCS and better in some. I personally find Carolina's presentation more genuine and her musicality more natural, less put on. The choreography of her programs is also artistically more mature and complex than Kim's.

    Can you give an example of where Kostner is being overscored and why you think so?
    I guess I have to disagree with you on the PCS. Regardless of personal taste, you don't suddenly develop musicality and interpretation over 1 season. Caroline does good routines like great gymnast can do on time to the beat, but none of the choreographed movements are felt from the heart with an unique opinion from this to other program she perform in the past. If you switch the music off on all Carolina's program, they are hardly different. Ultimately, the whole idea PCS is suddenly the most important thing in figure skating is ridiculous, when their technical content do not match up to the standards of the past gold standard and most importantly to others they compete with IN the same competition. If this standard applies to the ladies, why arn't it applies to the men, where Jeremy and Daisuke certainly deserve higher PCS since they excel in the areas you mentioned.
    Last edited by os168; 03-14-2012 at 07:35 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    Put it this way, this fact the score of this FS program with 1 hands down is 0.82 points different from Kim's FS error free high degree of everything program at the Olympics is a warning sign of the things to come.
    Maybe the hand down is the 0.80 points difference with yuna skate! Without it she may have scored higher! really I cannot understand why all this issue with carolina's components. You prefere yuna so you tend to prefer her over carolina as I do the opposite and say that yuna free program even if perfect and well constructed put me to sleep, while carolina gave me goosebumps. Still it's not possible to compare two programs of different competitions! There's two years difference and different judges! It's just IMPOSSIBLE!
    And it's not that yuna has never been overscored in her career...

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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    Koster did the best skate on the day hands down. I have no problem with that. It is probably one of the best skate of her life even with one hands down but imo still lack in finesse and variance (change of mood, pace, depth of full realisation, tone etc) I look for in a FS program
    Au contraire mon frere: compare the moods in the beginning and end of Kostner's program: contemplative and peaceful (with the brilliant choreographic choice of starti the loop after a long figure eight) versus joyful during the ending step sequence. All that echoed in Kostner's facial expressions and style of moves. Simply brilliant!

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