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After nearly 2 years: 2022 Olympics Figure Skating Team Event Decision!


Emeralds

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https://www.google.com/amp/s/amp.theguardian.com/sport/2024/jan/30/us-figure-skaters-gold-medals-team-event-russia-canada

 

Finally....for those of you who follow the sport of figure skating with its ballet inspirations and associations, the outcome we've waited so long for. 

 

The International Olympic Committee has completed its investigation into the Russian doping scandal and will be awarding the 2022 Olympic Figure Skating team event gold medal to USA, and the silver medal to Japan. As for Russia/Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) athletes, the whole team is neither disqualified nor allowed to stay in gold medal position, as Kamila Valieva's results are rendered void but the results of other figure skaters on the team are still valid. So ROC get bumped down to bronze medal position. 

 

On a separate note, Kamila Valieva's results in the 2022 European Championships have also been rendered void as a result of the doping tests so her 2022 Olympic team mate Anna Shcherbakova moves up to gold medal position. (Shcherbakova, the 2022 Olympic champion and 2021 World Champion in ladies singles now has a hat trick or "skating grand slam" of all 3 major competition gold medals, having missed out competing in the 2021 competition which was cancelled due to Covid, and having been barred from the 2023 competition due to Russia invading Ukraine.)

 

As with all ISU (International Skating Union) and IOC sporting results, all sporting federations have a limited number of days  to register any objections or appeals they might wish to. A decision on where and when a medal ceremony (which was not held at the time of the Beijing games) will be held, or if indeed there will even be one (given the situation with the war), has not yet been announced. 

 

From the skating point of view (not from other considerations) that's probably the fairest outcome one can think of. The news is also on all the major news and sport websites. Congratulations to Team USA and Team Japan! 

Edited by Emeralds
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Addendum: I hadn't noticed at the time that when Valieva's points were rendered void, that the other women skaters were not moved up a place- ie the first place winner was disqualified but they left the other competitors in 2nd, 3rd and 4th etc instead of moving them up to 1st, 2nd and 3rd. I had assumed that IOC and ISU had already moved them up.

 

This explains why ROC apparently still appears to have accrued enough points - but didn't- to remain in bronze medal position despite the fact that one quarter of their team scored zero and none of their other team members did well enough to win both the short program/short dance as well as the free programme/free dance: only Valieva did (conversely USA won both short and free sections of the ice dance event, for example).

 

If the remaining women competitors were moved up 1 place each as logic would dictate they should (if someone is disqualified, first place can't be won by a ghost or a vacuum) then Canada would beat ROC and win the bronze. I am certain that the Canadian federation would make this case to the ISU, IOC and CAS (Court fir Arbitration of Sport), as it still gives credit to the other skaters on the ROC team who passed doping controls and is likely to receive support from other teams that competed in the event: USA, Japan, Italy, Germany, Ukraine, etc and other skating federations. 

 

This could turn out to be interesting. 

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A 15 year old was given drugs by adults, none of whom are being sanctioned.

 

This young person, still not yet 18, will never compete again, as by the time the four year ban she has received expires, she will have been long consigned to the scrapheap.

 

TBH I think the ISU should further alter their age rules, and require all competitors in senior-level competitions to have turned 18 by the date of the competition or the first day of the season, e.g. 18 by 1 September or 1 October. 

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I think the ban is backdated to December 2021 so finishes December 2025. 
As she is so young she could still take part in another major competition as there is nothing to stop her training. 
Obviously not the easiest of circumstances. 
This is all such a shame as she was a very good skater and the one with the most promise for the future in my view 


It also seems to have taken them ages to make a decision about this. 
I haven’t read up properly yet about everything around this decision but if the coach is unpunished how can you trust what’s going on with anybody she trains? 
 

To be honest I’m not keen on the way skating is going at the moment as everything is sacrificed to get the jumps in! I know the jumps can be exciting especially if you are physically present but I wish they would say only two quads max per programme! Any more don’t get extra points as so much skating now is just going from jump to jump and losing any sense of artistry….which Valieva naturally had. 
I wonder what she will do. 

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1 hour ago, LinMM said:

As she is so young she could still take part in another major competition as there is nothing to stop her training. 

 

She'll have been long scrapped by coaches etc., and I think doping bans prohibit her from being coached and from using ice rinks. I know in other sports doping bans extend to training in facilities used by other pros, and to coaching services.

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The Russian system seems to consign their female skaters to the scrap heap by the time they get to about 19 (I recall a few years ago hearing an 18 year old described as a "veteran") so Valieva would probably have been out by the next Olympics even without the doping ban. Such a shame.

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The drug trimetazidine could well have been given by her famiily as her grandfather told the world's press that it is his prescribed medication for his heart and he has a bottle of the pills at home. However the fact that she was also on three other substances - Hypoxen, L-carnitine and Supradyn- to enhance her performance does raise the point of what the Russian sports authorities are doing to teenage athletes.

 

While these substances are not currently banned (but neither was meldonium until it was discovered to be turning into a popular drug to misuse for performance enhancement), they are certainly not what most paediatricians and health professionals would advise to be sensible and safe for daily or regular use for a growing teenager. 

 

ISU has already started gradually raising the age of competition eligibility meaning that several clean athletes from countries like Japan and Korea who won medals in junior competitions will be unable to progress to senior competition in Milan-Cortina in 2026. The proposed minimum age is currently 17 for the 2024-2025 season onwards. If it were 18, there would be the illogical scenario that many junior skaters would be performing at a far higher level of proficiency than the actual world  and Olympic medallists except in ice dance.

 

Also in snowboarding and park skateboarding the age limit is even younger- there are competitors aged 13 in the World Championships and Olympics (Sky Brown won a bronze medal in the Tokyo Olympics aged 13; the silver medallist Kokona Hiraki was 12 years and 11 months old). Their injuries can often result in head injurues that render them unconscious and requiring a stay in hospital - figure skating might not be the only sport requiring change.

 

Valieva hasn't been barred from training or competing in Russia at all, as the official stance in her country is that she hasn't been banned nor done anything wrong but was simply a victim of foreign envy. She has continued to train with her 2022 coaches and choreographer and compete in numerous Russian competitions.

 

However Valieva has now found herself beaten by younger skaters who train alongside her, in a sense doing what she had previously done to older team mates. The Russian female skaters have often said that their toughest competitors are not the Olympic or world championship competitors from around the world but the skaters in their own country, all vying for the 1, 2 or 3 berths to these championships and all of the same high standard. Russia of course, is banned from the 2024 Paris Olympics, and looks set to be getting themselves banned from Milan-Cortina 2026 Winter Olympics as well unless they withdraw from Ukraine very soon, so whether Valieva is cleared to compete is probably irrelevant, as nobody else from her country looks like they will be at this rate. 

Edited by Emeralds
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On 01/02/2024 at 05:45, Emeralds said:

Valieva hasn't been barred from training or competing in Russia at all, as the official stance in her country is that she hasn't been banned nor done anything wrong but was simply a victim of foreign envy. She has continued to train with her 2022 coaches and choreographer and compete in numerous Russian competitions.

 

And this is yet another reason why bodies outside Russia are so anti-Russian participation.

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On the more general subject of ice skating, may I ask where people are watching it this year? It occurred to me that the European championships should have taken place by now so I had a look on Discovery+ (which I had to subscribe to instead of Eurosport starting from last year) only to find they only have past programmes from 2023, nothing from 2024. So does anyone know where 2024 ice skating is being shown if it's not Eurosport/Discovery+?

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14 hours ago, Jan McNulty said:

 

Yes, I found that when I checked the date. However I thought I'd be able to catch up but Discovery+ doesn't have 2024, despite still having e.g. the 2023 worlds available to watch again, so I'm wondering if they no longer have the ice skating rights for the UK.

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Oh but Shane Warne's mum gave him one of her diuretics because he was bloated. NOT.

 

He got a year's suspension. The ban covered all organised cricket.

 

In addition to international matches, the leg-spinner was also ineligible to play for Victoria, English county Hampshire or his local district club St Kilda for 12 months.

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On 07/02/2024 at 20:00, Dawnstar said:

On the more general subject of ice skating, may I ask where people are watching it this year? It occurred to me that the European championships should have taken place by now so I had a look on Discovery+ (which I had to subscribe to instead of Eurosport starting from last year) only to find they only have past programmes from 2023, nothing from 2024. So does anyone know where 2024 ice skating is being shown if it's not Eurosport/Discovery+?

Dawnstar, they're all on YouTube now- probably a good thing as Eurosport often used to edit out skaters I wanted to see if they were not in the top 3 (and way too many Russian skaters who did not make the podium being covered instead of the 5th or 4th ranked skaters from "non powerhouse" nations who were much better).

 

Go to the ISU Skating YouTube account. You will see Grand Prix Final, all the Grand Prix events (except Skate America and Skate Canada this year as I think Eurosport aired it on their most expensive package), Junior Grand Prix, European Championships and Four Continents Championships. You will find last year's events (including world championships) on the account too. They will be there long term and they cover all the skaters who competed. The exhibition galas are on it too. You can connect your computer/device to your TV to watch it on a TV screen if you prefer watching it like that, if you're tech savvy at that sort of thing. 

 

The only downside: lots of repetitive ads as it is monetised. (The less popular events/categories and clips will have fewer ads.) PS a shoutout to Britain's Lilah Fear and Lewis Gibson who won silver in Ice Dance! (Also if you're watching JGP, look for Ashlie Slatter and Atl Ongay-Perez of Britain who came 4th in JGP Linz and JGP Budapest but show so much promise in ice dance!) 

Edited by Emeralds
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4 hours ago, Sim said:

Wow, that's an original excuse.  I wonder who came up with that one?!

Valieva must have eaten not just the strawberries, but the entire chopping board as well, plus the knife, for the results to show up on a urine test.  While the pill is still on it. (Kamila and Granddad, you might need to attend a biology course on how kidneys, urine tests, and the digestive system work. A tiny fragment does not give you a positive test.) I have no doubt she can probably swallow chopping boards and knives if she can do so many quads and triple axels with ease, but it is a shame that she couldn't just stick to practice and training runs and give all the supplements and chemicals  (including the non illegal ones) a wide berth. 

 

Unfortunately given Kamila's previous interviews with the press where she outlined her focus and steely ambition to win gold medals at all the major championships, I am less and less inclined to believe it was an accident. And unfortunately, like the Sydney Olympics and poor Andrea Raducan's case showed (where all the gymnasts who moved up and benefited from the medal upgrade actually sympathised and wanted her to stay in gold and not to move up) even an accidental mistake by someone else (the team doctor gave Raducan a common cold remedy that had different ingredients to the Romanian version without realising it)  means you are responsible (your body, your responsibility) and you have to give up the medal. 

 

I wonder how the Canadian Olympic Committee and skating federation are getting on with appealing to ISU to do the arithmetic correctly as Canada actually deserve the team event bronze. I'm not Canadian but I hate to see blatantly incorrect mathematics being used. 

Edited by Emeralds
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On 07/02/2024 at 23:46, alison said:

The Worlds will presumably be in March as usual, but I've no idea who's covering it :(

18 - 24 March 2024 in Montreal. BBC2 nowadays covers ice dance and sometimes men's and pairs more or less live (maybe with a brief delay) on the red button with a highlights compilation (with Robin Cousins commenting) on the Sunday after the last event ends, as Lilah Fear and Lewis Gibson are doing so well. But I hope British  Eurosport won't as we will then be geoblocked from watching the whole competition on the ISU YouTube Livestream. I much prefer YouTube coverage to TV coverage! 

Edited by Emeralds
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42 minutes ago, Emeralds said:

Dawnstar, they're all on YouTube now- probably a good thing as Eurosport often used to edit out skaters I wanted to see if they were not in the top 3 (and way too many Russian skaters who did not make the podium being covered instead of the 5th or 4th ranked skaters from "non powerhouse" nations who were much better).

 

Go to the ISU Skating YouTube account. You will see Grand Prix Final, all the Grand Prix events (except Skate America and Skate Canada this year as I think Eurosport aired it on their most expensive package), Junior Grand Prix, European Championships and Four Continents Championships. You will find last year's events (including world championships) on the account too. They will be there long term and they cover all the skaters who competed. The exhibition galas are on it too. You can connect your computer/device to your TV to watch it on a TV screen if you prefer watching it like that, if you're tech savvy at that sort of thing. 

 

The only downside: lots of repetitive ads as it is monetised. (The less popular events/categories and clips will have fewer ads.) PS a shoutout to Britain's Lilah Fear and Lewis Gibson who won silver in Ice Dance! (Also if you're watching JGP, look for Ashlie Slatter and Atl Ongay-Perez of Britain who came 4th in JGP Linz and JGP Budapest but show so much promise in ice dance!) 

 

Thanks. I'll look it up. I found when watching Eurosport online for the last couple of years that they showed absolutely everyone. I was slogging through 20-30 hours of coverage per championship! I find the main downside of watching things on Youtube is it's either a little screen or I have to have it on full screen, whereas watching Europort/Discovery+ online I can have a decent sized but not full screen.

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3 hours ago, Emeralds said:

And unfortunately, like the Sydney Olympics and poor Andrea Raducan's case showed (where all the gymnasts who moved up and benefited from the medal upgrade actually sympathised and wanted her to stay in gold and not to move up) even an accidental mistake by someone else (the team doctor gave Raducan a common cold remedy that had different ingredients to the Romanian version without realising it)  means you are responsible (your body, your responsibility) and you have to give up the medal. 

 

Same situation as Alain Baxter - who would have been Britain's first skiing medallist (Salt Lake City, was it?) - but bought an over-the-counter cold remedy which he assumed was identical to the UK one and therefore safe.  It wasn't :(  

 

8 hours ago, Sim said:

Wow, that's an original excuse.  I wonder who came up with that one?!

 

Or there's kissing a random individual, who must have taken cocaine, in a nightclub and then testing positive for it yourself.  And wasn't Sharapova's excuse something similar to Valieva's, or was that someone else I'm thinking of?  Mixing cooking implements? 

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3 minutes ago, alison said:

 

Same situation as Alain Baxter - who would have been Britain's first skiing medallist (Salt Lake City, was it?) - but bought an over-the-counter cold remedy which he assumed was identical to the UK one and therefore safe.  It wasn't :(  

Poor Alain- that was very unlucky. Yes, Salt Lake City 2002. The American Vicks inhaler contained levometamphetamine, an isomer of methamphetamine that has no stimulant effects but still makes the urine test turn positive.  It was very strange that in Baxter's case they IOC and CAS declared that they believed he was innocent and the chemical isn't a stimulant- so technically it's a false positive. I thought the decision not to reinstate Baxter's bronze medal was harsh, especially given that they had concluded that they believed he had no intention of cheating and they agreed the test was a only positive due to a non-stimulant substance. Ever since then, the British Olympic Team reportedly (according to Andy Murray) tell all their athletes to bring every new item they ingest, inhale or rub into their skin to be tested in case it contains an isomer or metabolite that causes false positives. 

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