Every skater they showed skated lights out, personal best, hip-hip-hooray! Angela Wang, Carlline Zhang. Ashley Cain, Hannah Miller, Samantha Cesario, Christina Gao, Yasmie Siraj, Courtney Hicks, you go girls!
Then when it came time for the grand drum roll and cymbol clash that we had been crescendo-ing toward -- awww. (Somebody has to pay for ruining my evening. ) Sorry, Ash.
Having watched the programs- well, Ashley was lucky to hold on, and I think she knew it. Gracie is an excellent athlete, though I could turn off the music and I enjoyed her program just the same that way- still, she has potential and at times she did project liveliness and a sense of connection to the music, even if those times were sparse.
To be honest, I'm sad for Mirai and sad for Caroline, but I'm really annoyed with how Christina was so underscored. To me she was definitely better than Agnes- good enough to overtake Agnes - and she is so much more pleasant to watch than Courtney Hicks, whose jumping skills I admire, but little else. I dunno. It wasn't the cleanest event, but I feel that Christina could (should) have been on the podium, and it's really her placement that is irritating me the most out of the results now.
Bottom line was this: there was no clear winner of the event. It could have gone either way - I bet one could make convincing arguments to have either Wagner or Gold the winner.
That said, in such a close call like this, I figured the judges would lean toward Wagner (this is where some favoritism or politics may come into play, on an unconscious level). If Wagner didn't do so well on the GP, the judges may have leaned in Gold's direction.
In general, though, I'm glad Gold doesn't have the burden of being national champ because with all the media attention on her (Did you watch NBC simply waxing poetic over her the entire night?!??) and with her already showing signs of vulnerability, that pretty much would have been it.
You know I tell it straight as I see it - no favoritism or extreme bias here - As far as getting back the 3rd spot goes, I'm not liking the odds. 1 in 3 - that's Gold's hit rate for the short program this season (and the free skate for that matter). 1 in 2 - That is Wagner's hit rate with the freeskate...just flip a coin and that's how she'll do. To Wagner's credit, she has been consistent in the SP, but without a 3-3 that will leave her behind in the standings. So, since we need BOTH Wagner AND Gold to do well, the lower odds prevail in this case with Gold's SP troubles. You know what they say - a team is only as good as its weakest link. She struggled with nerves at SC and Nationals - Worlds is an even bigger event.
Last edited by R.D.; 01-27-2013 at 07:16 PM.
I don't expect Ashley and Gracie are going to get that third spot back either. But no combination of skaters is going to get it back.
Unless Gracie gets injured or just doesn't improve i expect her to be in the running for a long time. I just wish she'd go to someone who knows how to choreograph programs for her. It's not unusual to have two different choreographers to do the SP and LP so she needs to explore her options. I don't know why her coaches are limiting her.
Still sad for Gao, who I thought really deserved to be 3rd or at least 4th...
Wow, I had no idea that Ashley's winning was irritating to some people. Gracie had a TERRIBLE SP and was VERY far behind Ashley points-wise. I see the result not so much as Ashley being "propped up" as it is that Gracie just had too much ground to make up after the SP. After all, the winning margin was only 2.27, so it's not as though Ashley made those mistakes and still won by a landslide. It was CLOSE! The bottom line is that Ashley did enough in the SP relative to Gracie to maintain the lead over her. Frankly, I'm thrilled that Gracie was able to do such a stellar FS. She was SO happy after her skate, which made me so happy for her. It was definitely the best moment of the night for me.
I do feel bad for Mirai because before the marks I was hoping she would get 3rd. But, I can see why she wasn't on the podium. Her program was lifeless, just a list of elements that were barely gotten through. By Mirai's recent standards, however, it was a very good skate. Her lower technical content and her URs are what kills her. She has to really fight to rotate her jumps, whereas Zawadski's jumps look effortless when she executes them as planned. NBC should not have zoomed in on Mirai in the first moments of her disappointment. Of course she was going to react strongly since she always wears her emotions on her sleeve, but the viewing audience doesn't need to see it up close like that.
If I had been given the power to decide the final standings, my top six would have been:
Gracie's jumps are huge, but I think Hicks can actually match hers as I've seen in past vids- she's a natural athlete.
Not sure what to make of Courtney's skating tho- I think she has raw talent, but maybe not the smoothest skater. Her skating almost looks like a roller coaster ride on ice. Perhaps she's still recovering from that fracture which setback her training, and probably needs more polish, but that raw athletic talent is evident.
Unfortunately, I think Hicks' SKATING (in between the jumps) makes Tonya Harding's skating look artistic, and that's really saying something. While Gracie has a ways to go in order to be in that top group on the PCS side, she at least makes an attempt to pay attention to her music. My husband, who's a confirmed skating hater went "ew" when he saw both of Hicks' program and went back to his game of spider solitaire.
Haha at least she elicited a strong emotion, it's a start