Who do you send as the second U.S. ladies’ skater to Worlds?

Mathman

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Jun 21, 2003
That doesn't sound like a process. It sounds like "we'll just pick whoever we want and just say her 4th-9th place international finishes demonstrate consistency."
I think that this is inevitable. Any "Commitee" given power to make decisions tries to increase its power as much as possible. Any collection of "experts" thinks it knows mote than anyone else. Any deliberative body likes to give itself some wiggle room rather than to be confined by a set of strict rules.

As for the skaters, there is nothing any skater can do except to skate as well as possible every chance she gets, and hope for the best. No skater would ever say, my strategy for the season is to medal at NHK and then finish 9th at U.S. Nationals and hope the Selection Committee appreciates my body of work.
 

drivingmissdaisy

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Feb 17, 2010
As for the skaters, there is nothing any skater can do except to skate as well as possible every chance she gets, and hope for the best. No skater would ever say, my strategy for the season is to medal at NHK and then finish 9th at U.S. Nationals and hope the Selection Committee appreciates my body of work.
Yes, a skater should skate their best every time out. However, having clearer criteria would help the skaters believe the process is fair. When you have close calls like choosing between Amber, Karen, or Mariah, it would be helpful to have clear rules like "a skater must finish in the top X at Nationals" or "finishes within a margin of X points will increase the weight of other events." The USFSA could easily do this, they just don't want to be pinned down by any rules that prevent them from picking whoever they want.
 

Mathman

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Jun 21, 2003
Yes, a skater should skate their best every time out. However, having clearer criteria would help the skaters believe the process is fair. When you have close calls like choosing between Amber, Karen, or Mariah, it would be helpful to have clear rules like "a skater must finish in the top X at Nationals" or "finishes within a margin of X points will increase the weight of other events." The USFSA could easily do this, they just don't want to be pinned down by any rules that prevent them from picking whoever they want.
X= 5. The rules say that the top 5 at Nationals go into the selection pool. (There are also some back door rules about skaters retruning from injury, etc.)
 

Blades of Passion

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There can't be a strictly robotic selection criteria, because there's other factors to consider than the competition results on paper (how well each skater/team is progressing, how they can be expected to handle pressure at the biggest event, what their scoring potential is), particularly since the scoring from event-to-event can vary in how much it should be trusted.
 

brightphoton

Medalist
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Jan 23, 2009
What I found sad was that even Bradie couldn't publicly celebrate going to World's after her kiss and cry. Think about that. Even the national champion had to hedge her words and say that she hopes the committee would look favorably upon her results and choose her for the world team.

It would be one thing if the committee's cleverness with third or fourth place winners getting bumped up resulted in good World and Olympic placements, but that hasn't been the case.
 

Blades of Passion

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What I found sad was that even Bradie couldn't publicly celebrate going to World's after her kiss and cry. Think about that. Even the national champion had to hedge her words and say that she hopes the committee would look favorably upon her results and choose her for the world team.

She didn't have to do that, it's obvious she would be going. Either way, it would be much smarter to be authoritative about it, and proclaim yourself a World-bound victor. That kind of confidence sways opinions and gains fans. If someone ends up being wrong, then so what? At least they showed some personality.
 

Mathman

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She didn't have to do that, it's obvious she would be going. Either way, it would be much smarter to be authoritative about it, and proclaim yourself a World-bound victor. That kind of confidence sways opinions and gains fans. If someone ends up being wrong, then so what? At least they showed some personality.
I think it could go either way. If Bradie said to the Selection Committee, "Up your nose, USFSA, I'm going to worlds whether you like it or not," that might lose her some brownie points in some future situation.

Just like if Amber had demonstrated "confidence" by bragging about how her 2nd place finish guaranteed her rightful spot, Committe be damned.
 

Mathman

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Jun 21, 2003
There can't be a strictly robotic selection criteria, because there's other factors to consider than the competition results on paper (how well each skater/team is progressing, how they can be expected to handle pressure at the biggest event, what their scoring potential is), particularly since the scoring from event-to-event can vary in how much it should be trusted.
This is certainly the case if you agree with the Federation that the goal of the selection process is to win the most medals and placements (as they declare flat out).

The opposite point of view would be to concentrate on the athletes. Have a fair and aboveeboard competition with transparant rules, and however it turns out, that's how it turns out. Like, in a tnnis match, whoever wins the semifinals advances to the finals, even if the loser has a more impressive resume and is by consensus the stronger player.

I can see merit in either point of view.
 

Blades of Passion

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Just like if Amber had demonstrated "confidence" by bragging about how her 2nd place finish guaranteed her rightful spot, Committe be damned.

Amber is in a much different situation, this is the first season she's even been relevant. Bradie just became 2-time National Champ, while consistently being a top 2 Senior Lady in the USA for the past 4 years; there's no possible reason she would be left out.
 

Amei

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Nov 11, 2013
i think no matter who they picked for the 2nd spot, they can't win. people are going to be upset if Mariah was picked with an inconsistent season and a 5th place finish, Amber who has been inconsistent for years who finally put together a medal worthy performance, or Karen who has also been inconsistent for years and finished behind Amber. there would have been reasoning to not send anyone for the 2nd spot. there was no clear choice and there would have still been people upset no matter who got it.

I think had they went with Nationals results they would have had less people annoyed then what they have now, it's not like Karen's recent body of work is overwhelmingly better than Amber's, and Mariah's shouldn't matter considering she finished so poorly at Nationals.

I think this past Nationals would have been the time to say it's time to put up or shut up ladies, top 2 age-eligible ladies go to Worlds, its not like anyone did a much more remarkably difficult program than everyone else they were all relatively close in TES BV. Make it a test, who can take the pressure that you have 2 skates to give it your all and get to Worlds.
 
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Blades of Passion

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If Karen had been scored 0.36 points higher at Nationals, virtually nobody would even been questioning her selection. 4 of out 7 judges in fact scored her higher, and that's after the tech panel went after her as hard as they possibly could. It's frustrating how easily a tiny shift, a superficial change in title to "National Silver Medalist", completely changes the perception of the masses.
 

drivingmissdaisy

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Feb 17, 2010
If Karen had been scored 0.36 points higher at Nationals, virtually nobody would even been questioning her selection. 4 of out 7 judges in fact scored her higher, and that's after the tech panel went after her as hard as they possibly could. It's frustrating how easily a tiny shift, a superficial change in title to "National Silver Medalist", completely changes the perception of the masses.
No one would be questioning anything because she would have been in the top 2 and three places ahead of a skater who had a superior body of work. But that's not the situation here. She ranked 3rd, and had the 3rd best body of work of the top 5 skaters in the selection pool (and objectively closer to 4th than 2nd on that criterion), yet ends up with one of the two Worlds spots.
 

alexocfp

Final Flight
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I started this thread and I was advocating for Amber vociferously, but it appears that USFed got the selections right when all was said and done. Have no problem admitting I was wrong.

Their #2 pick outscored the National Champion.
 

drivingmissdaisy

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Feb 17, 2010
The free skate is yet to come, and while Karen is lovely her URs weren't called. We also won't observe the counterfactual -- how Amber would have performed. She showed a lot of potential at Nationals.
Exactly right. Karen skated really well in the SP, but everyone does their strongest triples in this segment. She is a lot less consistent on her LP triples than the other top skaters. If Karen finishes in the top 7 or so, I would say there is no doubt she was the right pick for the team.
 

kirauza343

On the Ice
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Oct 1, 2020
Exactly right. Karen skated really well in the SP, but everyone does their strongest triples in this segment. She is a lot less consistent on her LP triples than the other top skaters. If Karen finishes in the top 7 or so, I would say there is no doubt she was the right pick for the team.
I will say she’s been stronger in the free than the short for her last few competitions (4CC, Skate America, and Nationals) so I’m optimistic! I hope she does well
 

CanadianSkaterGuy

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Joined
Jan 25, 2013
She didn't have "URs".

The most talented U.S. lady is shining through.
One uncalled UR on her 3T (even the most lenient tech person should have given that a 'q' at best), and arguably a 'q' on her 3Z (but I'll give her the benefit). This isn't the best we've seen from Karen but I have to agree that in this particular segment she was the more talented US lady, and elements aside I much preferred her performance to Tennell's.
 
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