First, sad news to report for American Joshua Farris. Today, his name was removed from his two Grand Prix assignments. No word on the issue, but hopefully it isn't a serious injury. He really has had bad luck with injuries as of late. I was really hoping he could build on some of the success he had last year, so I am hoping to see him compete at Nationals.
US Figure Skating announced a new competition for this season- The Team Challenge Cup- that will be held in Spokane, Washington in April. The event has a concept similar to that of the World Team Trophy, where three teams 1) North America, 2) Europe and 3)Asia each consist of three ladies, three men, two pair teams and two ice dance teams. The selection process of the athletes is a little funky- all of the pair/dance teams are chosen based on ISU rank along with the top two men and ladies, but the last two members ( a man and a lady) are chosen by FAN VOTE. Interesting.... Also of note- the top two from each discipline CANNOT be from the same country(i.e.- No Gold/Wagner, Tuktamysheva/Radionova, Miyahara/Murakami or Peng&Zheng/Sui&Han). The fans can vote in those skaters though. BUT- not any skater that you want! Fans will choose from a list of 5 men and ladies nominated by the Team Captain and all of these skaters on the list must be entered into that year's World Championships- WHEW!
It's all new and different information at this point, but hey- it's more skating for us to watch and that is always a good thing! Hopefully this will soften the blow of the season being over after worlds and I can see this competition being held on a semi-annual basis to rotate with WTT. It's a great opportunity for those on the West coast to see some good skating and hopefully the top athletes agree to attend. IceNetwork will provide live streaming free worldwide and it will be shown on network TV.
This week, we have the Nebelhorn Trophy and JGP Torun. Both have a live stream (yes!) and the Nebelhorn lineup is pretty good! I will live tweet when I can, but the times are a tad early for some events.
Have a great week!
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Reviews, predictions and opinions in the magical, sparkly and dramatic field of figure skating.