Sochi 2014 Figure Skating Coverage Schedule

In anticipation for the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, I have compiled the ultimate broadcast schedule for the figure skating fan. 🙂 Fun fact: Team Canada has the largest team for figure skating during these games: 17 skaters in total!

Sochi 2014

Sources:

the things you say/don’t say when you meet your idol in real life…

Last Saturday, I had the amazing opportunity to meet the reigning Canadian National Mens Figure Skating Champion…Patrick Chan! But how, you ask?

He had a fundraiser dinner event on January 29th at a local chinese restaurant, hosted by the 4th World Chinese Entrepreneurs Convention Canada Founding & Development Society. My family doctor happens to be one of the organizers for the event, and my family bought a table of 10 through her.

When we got there initially, I found it hard to believe that Patrick Chan, world-class figure skater, was in the same room as I was. But I wasn’t nervous at all to meet him. I was quite excited, in fact. At the time, I thought to myself, “Gee, if I’m not nervous, everything should go well.”

The funny thing is, all of Saturday night and Sunday, I’ve had this feeling of regret that I didn’t say the things I wanted to say to him. And that he probably thinks I’m dim and immature. But then I started to have a good laugh about it, so I decided to put together the dialogue between myself and Patrick: what I did say, what he said, and what I should’ve said.

Here are pictures of my gift to him – it’s a pair of miniature Canada-themed paper-clip ice skates. I must credit inkyrat for the pattern, and I took some creative freedom with the rest of the design and colour scheme.

So everyone…the lesson of the day is: before you meet your idol irl, prepare so  you don’t say things on a whim that make you sound dumb. sigh.

But still, it was a super awesome night. I felt a little bad for Patrick though, his eyes must have really hurt and mouth stiff from smiling and getting camera-flashed at about 500 times that night. He was such a good sport about it all, and I’m so happy I got a few pictures with him. I also purchased a stuffed bird from this silent auction! The collection of stuffed toys up for auction were from the most recent competition, when his fans threw them onto the ice for him. But as you can imagine, Patrick gets tons of these and cannot possibly take them all home. So he usually donates them to children in hospitals, but he put a few up for the silent auction on his fundraiser event. I even got it autographed! 🙂

With all that said, I am so honoured to have had the opportunity to meet Patrick Chan. My only regret is that I wasn’t able to express myself as well as I know I can, and hopefully I will have another chance to chat with him again. 

I wish him the best of luck in March at the 2011 World Figure Skating Championships in Tokyo, where he will be representing Canada. And we are all so proud of him already – can we get any prouder? 😛

Tessa & Scott = Awesome.

On February 22, 2010, Canada’s Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir became the first North Americans to win the Olympic ice dance competition. They have been partners since 1997, sacrificed much for their training, and achieved a well-earned Olympic gold medal in Vancouver. Tessa and Scott always exude confidence and grace, both on-ice and off-ice. I think it’s safe to say that Canada never once doubted that they would win the Olympics because they are such a strong team.

Recently, I purchased their new biography, Tessa and Scott: Our Journey from Childhood Dream to Gold. It’s written by Tessa, Scott, and Steve Milton (sportswriter), with a foreword by Tracy Wilson (former Canadian ice dancer, 1988 Olympic bronze medalist). If you’re a die hard fan of Tessa and Scott, you have to get this book because it is packed with cute photos from when they were young, and full of tidbits about the pair that you wouldn’t be able to get elsewhere.

But hey, I’m not here to advertise for the book. I only mention it because it has revealed to me that Tessa and Scott’s journey to their Olympic Gold was not as smooth as I had imagined. Of course I have appreciated the fact that training for the Olympics must not have been easy, but I didn’t know that there were many times of doubt about whether or not they would be ready for the Olympics.

In fall of 2008, Tessa received surgery for her chronic exertional compartment syndrome, which had been causing massive pain in her shins. After recovery from the surgery, the ice dance pair had to alter their training routines because Tessa could not skate for long before her shins became too painful to endure. All throughout the rest of the 2008-2009 season, and the 2009-2010 season, Tessa continually received physiotherapy for her legs to help with the rehabilitation. Even during the last few training sessions in Vancouver before their first performance, Tessa was plagued by the pain in her legs. But did the public see any of this? No.

During the time leading up to the Olympics, Tessa and Scott put up a strong and positive front; they didn’t let us see any of the pain, doubt, and frustration they had, because they didn’t want to cause bias amongst ice dance judges. And they were successful, as it is reflected in my oblivion.

I have always known that Scott and Tessa are professionals, but now my respect for them has multiplied a million-fold. I admire Tessa for being so strong throughout her injury and recovery, Scott for being so supportive, and the both of them for sticking with each other through thick and thin to ultimately achieve their childhood dream. And also for being beautiful skaters. 😀

Tessa and Scott’s story is a perfect example that nothing ever comes easy. They are my inspiration to work and study harder, as I tank my way through university to become what I want to become.

Now I just have to meet them. 🙂

———

Source:Tessa and Scott: Our Journey from Childhood Dream to Gold by Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, with Steve Milton; foreword by Tracy Wilson. House of Anansi Press; 2010.

Image: Getty Images via Daylife

Skate Canada International 2010 Results!!

Just a quick note about the 2010 Skate Canada International, which was held this weekend in Kingston, Ontario. Team Canada looks very strong and ready to fight, so I am really looking forward to the rest of the season!

To the right is a picture of Vanessa Crone and Paul Poirier doing their free dance – one of my favourite performances from the competition!

For the results, go here!

Vancouver 2010 Olympics – DAY 11 – Ice Dance Free Dance

So I have no time to post tonight…but

CONGRATULATIONS TO TESSA VIRTUE AND SCOTT MOIR FOR WINNING AN OLYMPIC GOLD MEDAL IN ICE DANCE TONIGHT!!!!!

London and Ilderton, Ontario, as well as the whole of Canada are so proud and happy for you!

=)

I promise I will post on them later.

Vancouver 2010 Olympics – DAY 10 – Ice Dance Original

Okay so I don’t have much time to blog tonight, but I just want to say… TESSA AND SCOTT ARE SO HOT! (lol that rhymed!)

Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir’s original dance tonight was a fiery Flamenco. They were not the last to dance, but their powerful performance was one of those that kept everyone captivated with every free leg extension and turn of their gorgeous faces, until the intense ending to their perfect dance brought everyone to their feet. Even me, at home, I was jumping up and down and squealing like a pig on drugs after their dance was over. (I felt a bit bad for Belbin & Agosto for having to skate after them.) Their score, like their dance, did not disappoint: 68.41, bringing their running total score to 111.15…putting them into first place!
(Photo by Getty Images, from ctvolympics.ca)

USA’s Meryl Davis & Charlie White performed an amazing Indian folk dance, earning them 67.08 to put them into second place with a score of 108.55.
The Russians Domnina and Shabalin landed in 3rd spot after an Australian aboriginal dance with absurd costumes…and not quality dancing either. Their running total is 106.60.
USA’s Tanith Belbin and Benjamin Agosto are in 4th position with 103.33.
Canada’s Vanessa Crone and Paul Poirier are now in 17th spot with 79.31. Not bad, kids!

Tomorrow night…Pacific Coliseum…Canada will be watching the most talented Canadian ice dance pair that we have seen in a long time : Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir. I am NOT going to jinx it by asking if they will win a certain colour of medal, but there is no doubt that Canada is hoping for it along with Tessa and Scott. Best of luck to them, and I can’t wait to be emotionally moved by their free dance again. no matter what results come out of it! =)

Oh and I should have mentioned this earlier, but you can rewatch everything on ctvolympics.ca! Without the commentary though…I think.

Vancouver 2010 Olympics – Tragedy strikes Joannie Rochette

Tragedy strikes Joannie Rochette

The Globe and Mail
By Rod Mickleburgh and Beverley Smith, The Globe and Mail Posted Sunday, February 21, 2010 1:12 PM ET

The mother of Canadian figure skating champion and Olympic medal hopeful Joannie Rochette died suddenly in Vancouver Sunday morning, shortly after arriving to watch her daughter compete.

Canadian team officials said Therese Rochette passed away after being rushed to Vancouver General Hospital.

Rochette died of a heart attack. She was 55.

Joannie Rochette was given the news by her father Normand and her coach Manon Perron at the Olympic Village Sunday morning around 6 a.m.

Officials said Rochette intends to compete at the Olympics, despite the shock of her mother’s death. The short program for women’s figure skating begins Tuesday night at Pacific Coliseum. The free skate, after which medals are awarded, is scheduled for Thursday. Rochette, 24, will skate 26th of 30 skaters Tuesday night. (click here to read more…)

Vancouver 2010 Olympics – DAY 8 – Ice Dance Compulsory

Tonight I couldn’t wait to turn on the TV because it was the start of the Ice Dance competition! This compulsory dance was Tango Romantica.

Russia’s Oksana Domnina and Maxim Shabalin are currently in 1st spot with a score of 43.76. Their score, however, raised questions over the judging panel…some international judges thought that they should not have scored so high because of some lack of quality and did not have the level of expression of Canada’s Virtue & Moir (!!!!) or USA’s Davis & White. There is fear that a Russia-favouring jury could benefit these Russians. Well, this problem isn’t mine to discuss. I only hope that there will not be another scandal like the one that happened two Olympics ago in Salt Lake City that almost costed Jamie Sale & David Pelletier their Gold. I hope that the Gold will be awarded to the most deserving ice dance pair, whoever it will be.
(visit CTVolympics.ca for more on the current controversy.)

Canada’s Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir skated last and came in a very close second at 42.74. (More on them later!) USA’s Meryl Davis and Charlie White, who share coaches with Virtue & Moir, came in third at 41.47. USA’s Tanith Belbin and Benjamin Agosto are 4th with 40.83.
(Picture from ctvolympics.ca)
Canada’s surprise team of Vanessa Crone and Paul Poirier came in 15th after a great skate with 31.14. (I say surprise because they won the second Olympics Canadian ice dance spot from the anticipated Kaitlyn Weaver & Andrew Poje at Nationals in January!)

Now…for the main subject of this post: Tessa and Scott.I can’t even begin to express how much I love them! I love them to bits! Okay, enough with the craziness. But seriously, who wouldn’t like watching them? Their tango tonight (last dance of the night) was sizzling hot! Rumour has it that they may have also danced the last tango in ice dance history, because the ISU(International Skating Union) will be voting soon to shorten the Ice Dance competition…and there won’t be a compulsory dance.
(Picture by Getty Images, from ctvolympics.ca)

Tessa and Scott are such a beautiful and talented pairing with undeniable chemistry that draws me in with each and every dance that they dance. They have been skating together since Tessa was 7 and Scott was 9, and now they are 20 and 22, respectively. On ice, off ice, they have so much respect for one another…they are so cute! I can’t help but wonder if they are a couple off ice…so far with every interview, Tessa has either skillfully deflected the question or warped her answer to seem like she is answering the question but really is not.

Click on this picture to watch a super cute interview of them on CTV!
Here, Tessa says maybe…teehee!

Their cuteness aside, they really are a very talented pair of ice dancers. Commentators have said many many times: they have the potential to take ice dance to a whole new level. That said, they really are Canada’s hope for an Olympic Gold medal! Every dance that I have watched them skate has been flawless, if not almost perfect, and I hope they continue to ride this wave all through to their free dance and knock down any judging biases.

My favourite Tessa & Scott dance, of all time, will have to be their free dance to Mahler’s 5th Symphony. I first fell in love with this dance at Skate Canada in November 2009 when they performed a spell-binding version of it.
Unfortunately, the good version of it got deleted on Youtube, so here is their free dance at 2010 Nationals (just as good!) Just click on the picture to go to the link.
Their lifts are so amazing, and my favourite move is what they call “Goose,” where Tessa balances on Scott’s right thigh, then jumps up and Scott catches her. So beautiful!

I absolutely cannot wait to watch it at the Olympics free dance on Monday! (Apparently Tessa has another new dress for it!) But up next – Original Dance on Sunday. =)

Vancouver 2010 Olympics – DAY 7 – Mens Free Skate…Quality over Quad!

Congratulations to Evan Lysacek for winning Gold in Mens Figure Skating at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games (score 257.67)! Also I must thank him for winning, because by doing so he has proved to Evgeni Plushenko that quality can be worth more than the quad. Evan’s skate was clean, perfect, and enthralling – definitely an Olympic Gold medal performance and he certainly deserves this glory.

Plushenko settles for Silver (256.36), and Daisuke Takahashi takes the Bronze (247.23), finally winning a medal in mens figure skating for Japan.
(Picture from Paul Chiasson, The Canadian Press)

Also, Congratulations to Patrick Chan for finishing in 5th place at his first Olympic games ever (score of 241.42). This is already an amazing accomplishment and Canada is so proud of him. In our hopes of winning the gold medal for mens figure skating, we may have forgotten that Patrick is only 19 and it is only his first Olympics…well, he is, and it is! This Olympics has been a great experience for him, and from here on he can only continue to improve and work towards achieving better results in competitions of the future. Like he said last night, he’s climbed the Mt. Everest of athletes once, the Olympics, and every other competition will seem so much easier to cope with. He’s so talented and I can’t wait to see him skate more…the nearest is the Exhibition Gala on Feb 27th! =D

(Pictures by Getty Images, from ctvolympics.ca)

I must also send my regards to Stephane Lambiel(4th at 246.72) and Nobunari Oda (7th at 238.54). Lambiel seems to have it all – both quad and quality. Unfortunately, he hadn’t delivered as well as he could this Olympics, and he just missed the podium by a little less than 1 point. And Oda…he would’ve pulled up in front of Patrick Chan if not for his skate mishap near the end of his performance, which caused him to lose 2.00+ points. It was so unfortunate, but I suppose the good thing is that it didn’t make him lose a spot on the podium.

And skating tomorrow night : Ice Dance – Compulsory! Canada’s Vanessa Crone and Paul Poirier are skating in the 4th flight, while Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir are skating very last, in the 6th flight. Hopefully the kids at Canuck Place tomorrow night will let me watch some figure skating on TV – so I can follow along!

Vancouver 2010 Olympics – DAY 5 – Mens Short FS

Tonight’s Mens Short program at the Pacific Coliseum was an exciting yet tense event for contending male figure skaters – it was the chance to prove themselves worthy.

Russia’s Evgeni Plushenko came out of retirement to compete once more in the Olympics, and he has come back as proud as ever. Tonight he brought a quad in combination and now has the top score entering the free skate on Thursday(see below for score list). To my understanding, it is his belief that he is the best, and that a male figure skater without a quad is not worthy to compete.

Plushenko probably entered the Olympics thinking that no other skater would even come close to him in score – well if that’s what he thought, then he certainly thought wrong…very wrong. Tonight, second and third places were very closely held by Evan Lysacek of USA and Daisuke Takahashi of Japan, both of whose SUPERB programs did NOT include a quad.


(Picture taken from ctvolympics.ca)

Canada’s Patrick Chan is the one Canada was watching tonight, and I believe he made an admirable effort. He is one who believes that the quad is not everything, and rightfully so – nobody can match the grace and delicate details he puts into every move he makes, and if anybody can rack up points from that second artistic score, it’s Patrick Chan. Although his performance tonight was not his best (stepped out on the triple axle, small mistakes, and 1.00 deduction from not ending in time with the music), he still came out 7th and may still be considered in contention for a medal placing. His spot now is probably better for him mentally than of he were placed higher, since he doesn’t have so much pressure going into the free skate and has a better chance to show everything he’s got…and help prove Plushenko wrong!

~~~~~~~~~
Dear Patrick,
you made a really great effort tonight, and Canada is so proud of you! Take a break tomorrow and embrace the Olympic atmosphere of Vancouver, then come back on Thursday and give it your all. You are so talented and we love you so much. GO PATRICK GO!
Love, Joan from Vancouver – your fan!!!!
~~~~~~~~~

Some major disappointments tonight include the performances of Brian Joubert of France, Vaughn Chipeur of Canada, and Tomas Verner of Czech Republic, and Jeremy Abbott of USA. These men unfortunately did not deliver tonight, and are well out of contention for the podium. Next time, boys!

Top 10 Results and other mentions after Mens Short Program
1 | Evgeni Plushenko 90.85
2 | Evan Lysacek 90.30
3 | Daisuke Takahashi 90.25
4 | Nobunari Oda 84.85
5 | Stephane Lambiel 84.63
6 | Johnny Weir 82.10
7 | Patrick Chan 81.12
8 | Takahiko Kozuka 79.59
9 | Michal Brezina 78.80
10| Denis Ten 76.24

15| Jeremy Abbott 69.40
18| Brian Joubert 68.00
19| Tomas Verner 65.32
24| Vaughn Chipeur 57.22

(results reported from ctvolympics.ca)

Mens Free Skate will be happening on Thursday…til then! Keep your head up, Patrick!

(On another note, I just saw on TV that the lovely Mary Murphy from SYTYCD is in town…and she screamed her way across the zipline in downtown Vancouver.)