Yuzuru Hanyu to skip the Grand Prix series due to Coronavirus

labgoat

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Yuzuru Hanyu won't be competing in the GP series this season,
He cites personal health (his asthma), logistics of travel for himself and coaches, and also that his participation might cause others to travel to see the competition and therefore further spread Covid-19. (my very simple summary of his statement)
https://twitter.com/megdale1021/status/1299264200909320192?s=20

-Here's a more detailed translation of his statement:
https://twitter.com/axelsandwich/status/1299268013888139264?s=20 -Many thanks to the translators.

This just makes me love and respect him more. I was hoping to have seen him in Montreal, but health and life are more important. Someday perhaps...
 

TallyT

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I appologize but i need to say it :)
It is easier decision for athlete who has earn everything in his career than young ones who still try to get to the top...they just dont want to lose possibility...they need to use every opportunity they have. Can you really belive that some youmg athlete who has earn her first gp assigment will announce that because of the situation in the world i will not participate??? No way...only Hanyu and some more can afford it! And according to GP there probably not aloud croud to the rink so no panic at all! I am sorry that at the moment Covid is the only "elite" illness in the world who kills like we do not have any other illness at all.
And you are supporting athletes the worst way by whishing that all competition to be canceled! They need these competition as much as air...so i think ISU is doing a good job when they try to run these event safely! Peace!

Thing is, they are not appearing to try very hard at all, just a lot of handwaving. Despite the figures, despite the hotspots that are appearing every time people relax (Usain Bolt, anyone?), they have yet to say much that would reassure skaters, support staff, press (and yes, if there is a Yuzu, there will be press - look at 4CC) etc that they have thought and are preparing for the general and specific problems. And winter is coming.

Yes, of course Yuzuru is in a special position. He has already won/achieved more than anyone else in the IJS era, he is famous and wealthy beyond the dreams of pretty much every other current skater, if he stopped competing tomorrow he would be able to - post covid - draw huge audiences live and online for any show he graced. He doesn't need to risk his health (which has always been somewhat fragile, amazingly so for a GOAT in any sport, and has always included that damned asthma) or those of other people for any competition at all, let alone a GP.

He is also in a special position in that he has way more responsibility to the public, being looked up to and having an influence on so many in Japan and Asia. Nearly every three-minute-or-less appearance with his white wall(TM) this year has included a plea to be careful, act safely, observe isolation, and that "not spreading the virus further is the best support for the people working on the medical front lines." He is also probably the one who knows best and close up the uncontrollable and frightening face of natural disaster, which for the Japanese gives him added authority.

As I said a lot of those younger, poorer and with too much to prove in deeply competitive fields will probably go anyway. Look at the test skates going on in Russia with audiences. If one of them turns into a hot spot, will we and the ISU all wring hands and say "but they didn't haaaave to go"?
 

el henry

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I am very impressed by Yuzu's statement and decision. Much respect:clap:

I don't understand trying to get a dig in at Yuzu's fans through this statement. From what I can see, his fans have been respectful and understanding, even though they are disappointed.

I think it may be more difficult for a skater in Yuzu's position to make this decision, actually, than some skater just embarking on his or her career. As bionic as he may seem, he only has so many years of skating left. ETA: although I of course agree that it may be easier for him as he has nothing left to prove.

Hopefully a younger skater has many years of skating in front of them, such that they could take the effects of a pandemic as seriously as it should be taken.:pray:
 
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sailormoon

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The only viable option was participating in the NHK Cup like other Japanese skaters will do. This is what the ISU intended. Brian Orser could instruct Hanyu remotely from Canada but without a coach, his NHK Cup could become a total disaster. The quarantine rules made it difficult for him to pick the Canadian GP unless he is determined to stay in Canada for the rest of the season. However, Evgenia is likely to choose the hard option by travelling to Canada whenever possible.
 

icetug

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Apr 23, 2017
The only viable option was participating in the NHK Cup like other Japanese skaters will do. This is what the ISU intended.
That's why Yuzuru decided to make his announcement right now, before tickets are on sale. Japan's been badly hit by the second wave of pandemy. So the option given by ISU wasn't really acceptable for him (however his health problems are for sure the most important reason of his decision).
I miss him immensely but I'm relieved that he doesn't put his health at risk.
 

TallyT

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I don't understand trying to get a dig in at Yuzu's fans through this statement. From what I can see, his fans have been respectful and understanding, even though they are disappointed.:

Pretty much all the ones I have seen are torn between regret (for us) and relief and respect (for him). We've been worrying pretty much since 4CC.

That's why Yuzuru decided to make his announcement right now, before tickets are on sale.

I have a feeling the need to ensure people knew before they bought tickets based on the hope he would be there (which they have done in previous years before even challengers were announced, so it's a valid thought) could have influenced his decision on when to speak up.
 

Shayuki

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Well, he can afford to make such a decision. However, I hope that other athletes who aren't as established or in as comfortable a financial situation aren't condemned if they do decide to participate.
Personally, I think the main reason is not wanting to be a risk to others, not the risk to himself.


Yes, this is the Japanese mentality. Respect!

If he has Asthma, he probably is quite concerned with the risk to himself.
 

1111bm

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Hell, if he's now aiming to unleash the 4A at Nationals... half of Japan will spontaneously combust.

But he's not gonna attend Nationals, I would think? The same reasons he cites for not participating in the GP apply to Nationals as well (even if they delay Nats to early next year).
 

TallyT

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Well, he can afford to make such a decision. However, I hope that other athletes who aren't as established or in as comfortable a financial situation aren't condemned if they do decide to participate.

I don't think, even if one of the competitions did end up a hotspot and people caught the virus, the skaters would be blamed. They all have to do what is best for themselves, especially at a time of such difficulty both personally and financially for many of them.

And we have the ISU for that.

Some may be on a sports scholarship/endorsement of one or another kind, so would feel more pressure to get at least some competitions under their belt to meet commitments; some - as I said, with the Russian ladies - need to keep a position in a tough field. Some may genuinely feel that the safety measures in place are sufficient.

Personally, if I was in their boots, I admit the choice would be hard.

If he has Asthma, he probably is quite concerned with the risk to himself.

He did make it clear that that was one of his reasons. Fans (and probably Brian's hairline) are just grateful he is even thinking about his health for once :agree2: given the scares he has provided over the years.

But he's not gonna attend Nationals, I would think? The same reasons he cites for not participating in the GP apply to Nationals as well (even if they delay Nats to early next year).

We don't know what will happen - or what the JSF will do about it - before then. One step at a time. Me, I think he primarily spoke up now to ensure fans buying tickets know where they stand before they do it 'on spec'.
 

Ella5555

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I just saw a segment about a young woman who is a personal trainer and suffers long-term effects from the virus. She has problems doing even simple Yoga and the symptoms continue to come and go. She has no idea now long this will last or if it will become a chronic condition. Not enough is known about the virus presently to know its effects in the long haul. I’m guessing many athletes (especially Yuzuru who has asthma) would not want to take such a risk with their athletic careers or lives - or the lives of their support teams and families. No one should bear a stigma for choosing not to compete. For those who plan to compete (provided the Grand Prix season goes forward), I’m hoping they all take extreme care when attending these events.
 

giulia95

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Summertime, will GP series start in two months?
Summertime, JSF announced Yuzu’s WD so no chance of him skating at GPF in Beijing .
Summertime ,Yuzu’s coach told the press he knows nothing about Yuzu’s programs.

Pre-Olys season has officially started , I guess.:laugh:

One of these mornings, you're gonna rise up singin'
Yes, you'll spread your wings and you'll take to the sky
But 'til that mornin', there is nothin' can harm you
 

icetug

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I just saw a segment about a young woman who is a personal trainer and suffers long-term effects from the virus.

A professional diver, age 31, got the virus with no symptoms at all, felt perfectly healthy. As he had to prolong his diving license, underwent medical examinations. His lunges turned out so damaged that he couldn't pass a spirometry test. No license, no work, and nobody can tell if he is able to dive again.

Please everybody take care of yourselves. Hope you understand those skaters who decide to skip competitions till it's safe. Hope you equally understand those who decide to take part in competitions this season. And prey all of them are healthy and safe.
 

ExcessSummer

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I, for one, was very relieved to hear about Yuzu’s decision to withdraw. As he had stated, his concerns included both his health and others‘, and I don’t doubt the sincerity of that. At the end of the day, it is his decision as an individual, and while he is an athlete and a superstar, what he has done is similar to the decisions we make everyday in choosing to leave (or not to leave) our homes, wear masks, disinfect, etc. In the same way that we don’t condemn those who choose to stay at home or refuse to attend mass gatherings or go to the mall, so should we not judge Yuzu for his decisions as an individual.
 

Yuzuruu

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The only viable option was participating in the NHK Cup like other Japanese skaters will do. This is what the ISU intended. Brian Orser could instruct Hanyu remotely from Canada but without a coach, his NHK Cup could become a total disaster. The quarantine rules made it difficult for him to pick the Canadian GP unless he is determined to stay in Canada for the rest of the season. However, Evgenia is likely to choose the hard option by travelling to Canada whenever possible.

Yuzuru is perfectly capable of planning his own training, it's been confirmed by BOrser himself that he's been doing that for years. I doubt it would be a problem for him to compete without coaches. This decision has nothing to do with lack of coaching but only with health - his and his fans'. He's just careful and extremely emphatic :)
 

Jeanie19

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I, for one, was very relieved to hear about Yuzu’s decision to withdraw. As he had stated, his concerns included both his health and others‘, and I don’t doubt the sincerity of that. At the end of the day, it is his decision as an individual, and while he is an athlete and a superstar, what he has done is similar to the decisions we make everyday in choosing to leave (or not to leave) our homes, wear masks, disinfect, etc. In the same way that we don’t condemn those who choose to stay at home or refuse to attend mass gatherings or go to the mall, so should we not judge Yuzu for his decisions as an individual.

Great first post. Post often. :)
 

TallyT

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I, for one, was very relieved to hear about Yuzu’s decision to withdraw. As he had stated, his concerns included both his health and others‘, and I don’t doubt the sincerity of that. At the end of the day, it is his decision as an individual, and while he is an athlete and a superstar, what he has done is similar to the decisions we make everyday in choosing to leave (or not to leave) our homes, wear masks, disinfect, etc. In the same way that we don’t condemn those who choose to stay at home or refuse to attend mass gatherings or go to the mall, so should we not judge Yuzu for his decisions as an individual.

Welcome! I absolutely agree. Yuzuru has done more than enough for the sport, risking his health once more and that of people he cares about is not something he owes anyone.

Mind you, if it's true that Alina is also not doing the GP series among other things? - the bean counters are going to be less than happy with the sport's two biggest draws giving it a miss.
 

giulia95

Medalist
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Jun 19, 2012
Update:
Due to paparazzi now we know for sure Hanyu regularly trains in his hometown rink.

Yuzuru is skating , he has something to prove to himself , he aims to his own goals.

He interrupted contacts with Orser and didn’t tell him about new programs – the canadian coach recently stated.
After 3 weeks Hanyu is still the only skater in the world who had the privilege to be announced out from GP series by his federation before ISU final decision and assignements.

A good start of the new season 😁
 
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