Sunday, January 27, 2008

Fourteen and too young for Worlds

What's the world coming too? Or at least the world of figure skating? Being a 14 year old national champion doesn't get you a trip to Worlds anymore. Well, they haven't for a couple of years now, but I can still complain, right? Take little Marai Nagasu, who took home the top prize in last night's senior ladies competition. She floated through her dance elements like a polished ballerina--of the quality usually reserved for more experienced skaters. She flew through her jumps, torquing her twists at such a speed that it was hard to tell she ever left the ice. Truth is, there's not much gravity holding her back. At 4' 11' (the height of my protagonist Dree, my fourteen year old gymnast) it might seem easy, but I bet it's hard to gain that much speed when your legs are only as big as twigs. But this is what impressed me the most. She fell in her opening double axle, then rebounded and skated her remaining program without a mistake. Flawless. Beautiful. Exquisite. The qualities of a much older competitor. Afterwards, in the kiss and cry area, she confessed that she was a bit perturbed that she fell and thought it "stupid" so she "attacked" the rest of her program. Good for her! What a star! That's what William (my fourteen year old junior skating champion) would have said in the same situation. "That was bloody stupid!".
It was fun seeing Charlene Wong as Marai's coach. Charlene was the perpetual silver medalist in Canadian figure skating circuit for most of the eighties. I loved her tenacity and always wanted her to break through a take the title, but it didn't happen. Now, she coaches champions. Good for her.
If you missed any of the action last night, check out the ice network for great videos of the competition.
I'll be busy with my manuscript trying to sneak in a scene of William training. Now THAT should be fun!


  1. Love hearing about how GG is coming along! Keep up the great work. 14??? WOW National Champions are younger and younger huh? I think if you win a National Championship you should automatically go to the Worlds! Yeeesh...age discrimination!

  2. Laura,
    GG's is coming...slowly. I keep making it better but I think it's time to really get it out there. An agent has had a partial for a week now and I'm getting together another query/sub for another interested agent.
    How's you partial coming? Thank God for figure skating on TV or else I'd be going nuts with anxiety!

  3. I have to say- I did enjoy Nagasu's performance. She was exquisite and that flexibility!!!! But because she is so young, she doesn't feel the pressure that the older skaters face- they know that their careers are short so the pressure builds each year. Listening to her speak, I had to laugh. Although she was cute, she sounded more like a ten year old. Charlene Wong? I never could see her breaking out because every performance was expected- there wasn't anything new to enjoy (read- boring.) If you stay around too long, you'll never elevate. Glad she's enjoying success as a coach. Now Shannon Miller- agree with you there. Perfection. Too bad she got a nose job.

  4. Man, you're tough! Although you were never much of a Canadian women's figure skating fan...although, do you remember Tracy Wainman? Loved her!
    I wonder if she is on You Tube? Gotta check it out!

  5. no no... i loved the pairs (sale and pelletier- best ever) and ice dancers (bourne and Kraatz- all time favourite routine is riverdance) and the men (orser). and i did love wainman. i'll check out you tube for sure!!

  6. Speaking of Sale...did you see her interview the women? Not exactly polished but I love that Canadian accent!


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