Figure Skating Thread (Olympic Spoilers/Discussion starting at post #16)

@makam Aunt Joyce’s Ice Cream stand evolved into The Skating Lesson YouTube channel. I quite enjoy the content which occasionally includes gymnastics related news and interviews.

Well, it’s been quite the eventful week.

Not least with both Rich and Robin @RedBirdie agreeing with me.


This is right in my top three of shocking moments, with simone’s olympics and that time doug said he would’ve given melnikova’s turns


She missed the second 4T in the team skewing way to one side, so it’s not like it’s completely unheard of. Unless of course, they knew about the test at that point too? kind of like Raducan on bb/fx ef?

if anyone understands German, here’s Katarina Witt who can hardly talk through the tears talking about the whole Valieva FS right after it happened (around 9:30)

Right, but it was not a huge error like hands down or a fall and she did land the first quad.

I am of course talking about the four year fan that are unable to recognize which jump is which or technical deductions.
To the everyman/woman the short program looked flawless especially compared to the long program.


I have agreed with you before though!

I love you like a Russian sister and we argue like siblings too. At the end of the day we respect each other even if we don’t always see eye to eye.

Kisses GIF by Becky G

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she fell completely, didn’t you watch her FS in the team final? She was actually so skewed that I don’t think anybody could have landed that. I can understand you wouldn’t remember tho cause the general vibe was “sure whatever she fell but this is all so gorge!”. She landed 2 quads, then fell on the third at the beginning of the bonus time.

I will have to go back and rewatch because now I don’t remember to be honest, the last two weeks have been a blur.

I love watching the figure skating! So bummed I missed home girl Alysa Liu’s free skate!

My opinion about the drugging scandal: Valieva’s coach berating her fits with the narrative that the coach is telling her to keep on as if none of this bothers her because it will deflect the focus from Valieva’s coaches and training staff, “nothing to see here”. Stephen Colbert got a good a good laugh from his audience when he repeated Valieva’s claim that she took her grandfather’s medicine, like she just accidentally picked up his day of the week pill box. I wonder why would a grandfather be taking this 3-drug cocktail? My other thought is I’ll bet in the Soviet Union that young people are not raised to express individualism, and if she even asked questions about what drugs they were giving her, they probably hushed her.

Translated some interesting notes from Alexei Andronov, Russian sports commentator last night, with the help of Google translate, maybe I’ll reproduce them here later. What I remember of it was he said, I think, mainly about Trusova’s tantrum, that it’s the reason why the athlete’s age limit should be raised. He also said to his audience, “Stop squealing (whining, crying, blaming) about the Anglo-Saxons, find out who gave her the drugs!” And something like “why coddle her because of her age by not taking her out of the competition, while this country puts kids her age in prison for 5 years.” And I think something else about one of their members of their parliament (congress / legislators) being a former person convicted or accused of doping. He said it’s in the culture.

My fave is usually the pairs skating, but I’ve been too busy working to watch them all. Just have TV on in the background while working sometimes.

There were some Russian commenters on one web thread, and one speculated that maybe Valieva threw the performance deliberately so she would get out of the way, due to the scandal, and let others get the medals. That crossed my mind, but from watching her free skate, it didn’t look deliberate. I wondered if her trainers even told her about the positive test. Maybe she learned of it from a friend or something, but I wonder if her training staff tried to shield her from the scandal news. Because even though I am more than 4x her age, I can see why it would affect anyone’s mental game, to feel like they didn’t deserve to be there, while everyone else had tested clean of drugs.

Something smelled about the delay to reveal the test result - that seems odd, maybe strategic, made me wonder if it was a deliberate delay tactic, maybe a pay off in there somewhere, how convenient! And it made me wonder if other athletes coached by the same people are truly clean of drugs. Maybe they all used them, but stopped using them a little sooner before the competition. I wonder how long those drugs stay in a person’s system. On the other hand, you’d think they have to build up their cardiovascular endurance without drugs, since they have to compete drug free.

This made me think of Raducan.

Also, hasn’t anyone told Trusova she needs to improve her artistry to win? She looked mad during her entire free skate, like a machine, except maybe showing slight relief after the jumps. I don’t see why her 2nd place finish should come as a complete surprise to her. Especially in a country like Russia where ballet is so big! Grace and interpretation is something they know about.

On the one hand, the voyeur in me wishes someone could translate the Russian of what the skaters said after their free skate. I was impressed that Johnny Weir could comprehend some of it! Who knew he could understand Russian! On the other hand, it’s rude that the media gets in their faces at their lowest moments. Give the athletes a break already.

Both in berating her and also in something else I read where Eteri commented on Valieva’s drug test, it seemed like Eteri was distancing herself from Valieva, not taking responsibility. This gives me the impression that Eteri is despicable.

If they ever give Valieva a chance to think for herself, I think she’ll never trust that training staff again.

Allowing Valieva to skate seems racist compared to the treatment of Sha’Carri Richardson.

Agree. Johnny said he walked out at first, and couldn’t commentate. During the free skate they were restrained and neutral for Valieva.

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I’m pleased Tara and Johnny witnessed this hot mess. Too bad they weren’t able to see it in person. Johnny understood everything Eteri said. Children’s wellbeing matters more than NBC’s reality TV style narratives. They needed a reminder.

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I think the reason Johnny and Tara seemed harsher than expected to me is because i think they were ALL IN in Valieva. Like, Team usa had 3 skaters and they would say nice things but Valieva was the main show, christmas morning to them. To have her knocked off the pedestal and have to question how much of her abilities are talent and hard work and how much is PED boosted has to be disorientating. So it is probably good that they kept commentary to a minimum. Especially since continuing to gush would be a terrible look if it shakes out that she has to be suspended.

It is too bad she skates for Russia, any other country and she’d be a shoo-in for another Olympics. But they probably already have her replacement in the pipeline.

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I think the replacements are subject to change if the age limit changes go through leading up to 2026.

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I do not. And even if she was told to throw it, she didn’t. She went for every jump.

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I never said that


Apparently the lab in Sweden was heavily impacted by COVID tests, thus the delay

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I don’t even know where to start with this, because there’s just so so many crazy takes.

People raised in the Soviet Union aren’t taught to express themselves?! What the hell? Valieva was born in 2006. Young people in Russia today have much the same lifestyles and interests as young people in the US. Have you seen her social media?!

Racist compared with the treatment of Richardson? Um, Richardson is an adult who admitted to taking a substance she knew was prohibited and in doing so, acknowledged that it had a positive effect on her performance. They have been very clear that the unusual circumstances surrounding Valieva are purely due to her being under 16.


Yes you did, i remember reading it again and again through my teary eyes. 2021 fx ef i think

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I was a little shocked at a lot of journalists willing to take these comments at face value. Like, someone said it’s racist, so it must be. You’re supposed to be a journalist, someone said that, but you check whether the claim holds. It’s certainly not the case that valieva and Richardson are the only athletes involved a doping scandal

Btw now that we’re taking about this, wasn’t she allowed to skate purely because the Russians decided to fight this and say it wasn’t the case, contamination and blahblah, and they couldn’t solve this dispute in time, which is where the whole irreparable harm comes into play?