Universal Sports' Notes and Quotes From The World Figure Skating Championships

Universal Sports' Notes and Quotes From The World Figure Skating Championships

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Universal Sports' Notes and Quotes From The World Figure Skating Championships


Many of us can’t see Universal Sports’ comprehensive coverage of the World Figure Skating Championships from Turin this week, but I still get press releases and I post them out of service to you.

Universal Sports PRESENTS COMPREHENSIVE COVERAGE OF THE 2010 World Figure Skating Championships
Olympic Games Suitemates Johnny Weir and Tanith Belbin dish on Vancouver Games;
Belbin and Partner Ben Agosto ‘leaving American ice dancing in very capable hands’
Friday Alert: Ladies’ Short Program Live at 11 A.M. ET
WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif., March 25, 2010:  Fan-favorite Johnny Weir continues to deliver timely analysis and deadpan humor as Universal Sports’ coverage of the World Figure Skating Championships from Torino, Italy, rolls on. Weir and U.S. ice dancing duo Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto joined live studio host Peter Carruthers upstairs in “The Loft”, where Weir and Belbin dished on being roommates (they shared a two-bedroom suite) in Vancouver during the 2010 Olympic Winter Games (see quotes below).
Also Thursday, Agosto and Belbin reflected on their final Olympic performances and the next chapter in their career. Universal Sports’ extensive coverage continues with the ladies’ short program at 11 a.m. ET Friday, and the ladies’ free program at 10 a.m. ET Saturday.
Weir, Belbin and Agosto joined a team consisting of play-by-play announcer Andrea Joyce, plus analysts Carruthers, Paul Wylie, Michael Weiss and Tara Lipinski. Former NBC Olympic researcher Lee Ann Gschwind was on hand with interviews and in-rink updates.
On American ice dancers Merle Davis and Charlie White’s ‘Bollywood-on-Ice’ performance
Weir: “Their Original Dance is my favorite figure skating performance I have seen in four years, from any gender, any ethnicity…anything! Their OD rocks my world!”
On Daisuke Takahashi considering a quad toe or flip jump in the Free skate
Weir: “That’s insanity. My groin hurts just thinking about it.”
On random subjects
Weir: (after Carruthers’ asked Weir if he was ‘chill-axing’ on the couch): “What’s with you and the lingo?” Carruthers: I know, I know. My kids are going to tell me ‘Dad, stop trying to act young.’
Weir (on his pledge at the Vancouver Games to ride a yak in 2010): “I absolutely rode a yak. I was on the George Lopez Show last night, and it has always been my dream to ride a yak, so he rented a yak for the day and I mounted it on national television — well, I got on it, but that sounds worse than ‘mounted.’ I rode this yak, and … the yak charged at the American flag. I was terrified!”
MEN’S: The U.S. is guaranteed three spots for the men’s competition in the World Championships next year, the result of Jeremy Abbott and Adam Rippon placing 5th and 6th, respectively. Daisuke Takahashi clinched the World title, with Canadian skater Patrick Chan securing silver and French skater Brian Joubert achieving the bronze. This is the first World Championship captured by a Japanese male figure skater in history.
ICE DANCING: The top two scores recorded in the Original Dance in International Skating Union history were bestowed today. Canadian couple Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir head into Friday’s Free Dance with 114.40 points, with the American duo of Merle Davis and Charlie White close behind (112.54 points), after both received season-best scores in the OD.
Belbin (on Canadian ice dancers Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir): “The intensity and passion that they put into this program is captivating. When doing the Flamenco, if you don’t have the personality infused into it, then it can fall flat. But Tessa and Scott have taken it and made it their own, and it’s really improved throughout the year. It’s a great program to demonstrate their connection to each other while skating.”
Belbin (on Davis and White’s ‘Bollywood-inspired’ Original Dance): “They did it so well, coming off the Olympics. There’s a huge outpouring from the Indian community, people were so honored and
pleased with the way they represented their culture in this folk dance. After a season of controversy with some programs about whether or not they were respectful in their delivery, I think Merle and Charlie exemplified how to (represent) so well…”
Merle Davis, to Universal Sports’ Lee Ann Gschwind (on their season and personal-best OD score): “We’re hoping to end things with another personal best. We’ve really been improving and we’re hoping to do the best again tomorrow. We’re aiming high.”
Belbin (On the young American Ice Dancing Team of Emily Samuelson and Evan Bates): “Performances like their Original Dance proves that we’re leaving American ice dancing into very capable hands. There’s room to grow, they are younger, they have a lot of rough edges to smooth out, but that will come with time. They are hard workers and on the right track.”
*With special guests Johnny Weir, three-time U.S. Men’s Figure Skating Champion and 2008 World Bronze Medalist; and Tara Lipinski, 1998 Olympic Figure Skating Gold Medalist, Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto, the most decorated U.S. ice dancing team of all time.
On their Olympic performance and retirement from the sport:
Agosto: “It’s difficult to put in perspective.  We were so happy with our skate. When you dream about your Olympic performance, and it comes true, it’s such a high. We’re still trying to come down and decompress.  It’s nerve-wracking watching all our friends compete in the World Championships though!”
Belbin: “It’s nice to sit on the sidelines, but we’re looking forward to a new experiences in the future, but we’ll never forget our time in ice dancing…”

Paul Wylie, 1992 Olympic Figure Skating Silver Medalist (on American Jeremy Abbott): “He missed the hardest jump and the easiest jump in this program and it was a bit of a struggle. He concentrated on the second half of the program, but overall he’s probably disappointed.”
Andrea Joyce, NBC Figure Skating Reporter: “There’s relief on his face that this season is over.”
Brian Joubert, to Universal Sports’ Lee Ann Gschwind: “I just want to be more confident. My goal is not to win a medal, but to do my best, like I did today. I feel more ready than I did before Vancouver. I learned a lot, not only about figure skating, but about my life.”
Wylie (on Daisuke Takahasi’s gold medal performance): “He went for it from the beginning with the point of view, the perspective and the quad flip. It’s huge for him to put all of this content, to put everything into the program, to not simplify it, and skate with all the energy through the footwork sequences and spins. This is a performance he can be proud of for the rest of his life.”
Weir (on Jeremy Abbott): “He was punished a bit (in his Torino short program scores) for not doing well at the Olympics Games. Politics do play a big part in this sport, and, if you aren’t good in the competition just before, you’re going to be judged on a different scale than you normally would. To me, as an athlete, it was a slap in the face.”

On American Adam Rippon and his Senior World Championships debut
Weir: “He was beautiful tonight. He’s my favorite for carrying on the future of men’s figure skating in the U.S. He’s very superior to a lot of the younger skaters coming up as far as artistry is concerned.”

Lipinski: “You’re learning a different jump when you put both your arms in the air. He’s the only one that can do it and it’s incredibly difficult.”

On Daisuke Takahashi
Lipinski: “To go out there and to put in the quad flip, knowing that there’s some skaters that skated clean right behind him, it was gutsy. But that’s what great athletes are all about.”
Weir (on what sets Takahashi apart from the rest of the field): “No comparison: he can land anything.”
Lipinski (on Mirai Nagasu): “I’m so excited to see what she does here. Watching her at Nationals and at the Olympics, she just improved before your eyes.”
Wylie (on Rachael Flatt): “She wants to deliver here and not get the downgrades that we so costly in Vancouver.”
Weir (on Kim Yu-Na): “The ladies’ are scored on a slightly lower scale than the men, but her score was only six points less than my score in Vancouver, so that just tells you how strong she is.”
Belbin: “Merle and Charlie have proved that they can beat Tessa and Scott before – they did it at the Grand Prix final this year – I’m really looking forward to the free program. They have very contrasting programs: Tessa and Scott have a very romantic, soft program and Merle and Charlie have a free dance package that puts together their strength, power and raw energy.”
World Championships Coverage on Universal Sports TV (All times are EDT):

Friday, March 26 – Ladies’ Short Program  (live at 11 a.m. and re-air at 8 p.m.) / Free Dance Program  (live at 4 p.m. and re-air at 11 p.m.)

Saturday, March 27 – Ladies’ Free Program (live at 10 a.m., re-airs at 8 p.m. and 11 p.m.)
Visit UniversalSports.com/tvschedule for additional times and re-airs.

One more press release post coming up.

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