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Karenina last won the day on June 5

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  1. Jr World Figure Skating Championships will be hosted by Calgary in February.
  2. I saw this headline and honestly thought someone was confused about the date of April Fool's Day... I guess we know where all the money we're paying for oil is going these days. Where's the :shrug: emoji around here?
  3. Well, there's this... https://www.insidethegames.biz/articles/1128694/ioc-bach-russian-athletes-return-hint
  4. I'm fairly confident, recalling both the LA 84 ceremonies and the SLC 02 ceremonies, plus knowing how very different in character and history those two cities are that LA 28 and SLC 30/34 will also have very different ceremonies. Sort of how Calgary 88 and Vancouver 10 were really different from each other.
  5. Not really. Atlanta does not equal LA, and citizens of both cities would make that clear to anyone asking. And I suspect that you'd hear the same from the citizens of Sydney and Brisbane. The only city/region that's the same in this equation is SLC. Even Nagano and Sapporo are very different parts of Japan (two different islands, for starters).
  6. I don't think so. In most of my social circles, China's got a terrible reputation. Hosting the OWG did nothing to improve their reputation in the USA and it certainly didn't in figure skating circles. My concern with this new law is how it would apply to any athlete who criticizes China and, later down the line, earns a berth at an international competition being hosted in China. For instance, China has been provisionally allocated to host the ISU's 2024 Four Continents Championships - what if some skater from Canada or the US re-tweeted a political comment that was critical of China and later earned one of their country's berths to the event? How could this law be applied to them? Would they, potentially, have to decline the event assignment out of fear of reprisal?
  7. Well, I don't think that hurt, but it didn't give the Sapporo 2030 effort as big of a boost as they were probably hoping to get. As it is, I suspect that we're going to see the IOC let this ride out until December. If the Sapporo No Olympics group gains some momentum, then SLC will get 2030 and the IOC will go back to the drawing board for 2034.
  8. The ISU Congress finished up yesterday with elections for the Council and Technical Committees. Shamefully, the full Congress elected Alexander Kibalko of Russia to the ISU Council on the Speed Skating side. He was elected on the 2nd vote, in a run-off against Serbia's Slobodan Delic, so I suppose it was a matter of picking either the puppet or the puppet master. The Speed Skating Branch then elected to the Speed Skating Technical Committee Belarusian Alexei Khatylev, again on 2nd ballot run-off. Thankfully, the Figure Skating Branch chose to NOT elect the Russians running for both the Synchro and Single/Pairs Technical Committees. Alexander Kogan of the Russian Figure Skating Federation called this week's Congress "Unfortunately... very politicized." Yeah, well... go talk to Putin about that. In other news, the new ISU President, Jae Youl Kim of Korea, had this to say about the current ISU ban: And given that the new ISU Council is made up of members from KOR, CAN (2 - Figure Skating VP and Athletes Commission representative), USA, JPN, FIN, HUN, ESP, NOR, THA, ITA, BUL, NED, and RUS, I don't see the Council revisiting that decision in the foreseeable future.
  9. Well, the Extraordinary Event clause failed (by 6 votes) yesterday at the ISU Congress, however the ISU Council's decision to ban RUS/BLR skaters, judges, etc does remain in effect as the Congress approved all of the ISU Council's Communications issued since the last Congress in 2018. In other news, the age minimum increase was passed, overwhelmingly. I'm convinced that the Valieva doping scandal led to the passage of the proposal, though it was in the works for quite some time prior to the Olympics. On tap for 6/8 and 6/9 are separate sessions for the Figure Skating (includes Synchro) and Speed Skating (includes Short-Track) branches, with lots of technical rule proposals, especially on the FS side. Elections for the Technical Committees in each branch will be 6/9; then on Friday, the entire Congress comes back together to vote on a few tabled motions as well as hold elections. Notably, Alexander Lakernik of Russia will not be able to stand for re-election as FS VP since the Congress rejected the motion to allow ISU Officials to serve past the age of 80.
  10. The ISU just issued a notice that their legal advisers have concluded that Russia & Belarus will be allowed to participate in the Congress. Because Russia has filed a CAS appeal of the ISU Council's decision to ban skaters upon the IOC's recommendation, there is a possibility that disallowing the Russian & Belarusian federations participation in the Congress it could nullify any of the decisions taken this week as well as the election of new officers, etc. The Urgent Matter to add the "Extraordinary Event" clause will still be voted upon and if it passes then it will come into effect at the conclusion of this week's Congress. No one is happy about this, but it makes sense. Ought to make for some interesting debates, especially over the age minimum & maximum proposals - not just for athletes, but also for ISU Officials - one would raise the age max for ISU Officials, which would allow Russia's Alexander Lakernik to stand for re-election as Figure Skating VP. Russia also has members standing for election to the ISU Council (Speed Skating Member), Technical Committees for Synchro, Single/Pairs Skating, Short Track (Chair), & Speed Skating (Chair).
  11. Heads up that the ISU Congress begins tomorrow (June 6th) in Phuket, Thailand. One of the items on the agenda will be an Urgent Matter amendment to their General Regulations allowing for the ISU Council to take "protective measures" against ISU Members and participation in their events in the case of an Extraordinary Event (terrorism, riot, civil unrest, war (regardless of whether declared or not), strike, nuclear or chemical contamination, epidemic, etc. I'm not sure, precisely, when this will be voted on per the agenda published by the ISU - There were some published reports in Russian media that the delegates from their federations (they have separate feds for Figure/Synchro and Speed) wouldn't know until the first day of the Congress and that a vote would be taken on whether or not they would be allowed to participate. It could be that this discussion occurs during the Verification of Credentials, or it could be during the Approval of ISU Council Communications, since they were the ones who made the decision to temporarily suspend Russia & Belarus' participation in via an ISU Communication. Another major item on the agenda is an age minimum increase for senior (Olympic) level competitions. This was in the works prior to the Valieva doping scandal, but if there was any doubt that it will pass, that went down the drain with grandpa's backwash. There are a couple of proposals - one is a gradual increase, the other is an immediate one. Those probably won't be debated on until the 7th since there are quite a few items ahead of them on the agenda. My expectation is that the gradual increase to 17 for ALL of skating (figure, synchro, speed and short-track) will be adopted - but it might be amended. The immediate increase proposal also only raises the minimum age for pairs & ice dancing to 16, while it raises it to 17 for the rest of the sport (singles, synchro, speed & short-track). I don't think there will be any difference in the minimum age based upon discipline - and especially not for ice dancing since most senior ice dance teams don't really come into their own competitively until their mid-late 20s. If you're interested, bored or both, you can also watch the ISU Congress proceedings via their YT channel - https://www.youtube.com/c/SkatingISU - it could be fascinating to watch what unfolds without the presence of the Russian delegates politicking their way to dominance. You can find more information about the ISU Congress and all of the agenda items here - https://www.isu.org/inside-isu/rules-regulations/isu-congresses
  12. Particularly problematic for Sapporo 2030, though, in not holding a public referendum is the fact that, demographically, Sapporo and the Hokkaido region ARE older. It's all well and good that the younger folks support the bid in higher percentages, but it should be worrisome that the support is so soft among the older people because that IS the majority of the voting-age population by a wider margin, especially compared to other cities where a failed public referendum has killed an Olympic bid. Basically, what it boils down to is the Sapporo 2030 organizers need to do more to demonstrate greater support among older demographics - how they accomplish that in the next six months before any cities are named for "targeted dialogue" is anyone's guess.
  13. Has the former Delta Center been renovated since 2002 to improve the sight lines? Figure skating fans still gripe about that venue 20 years later - I seem to recall some large concrete pillars blocking views of the ice from some seats. If the Maverick Center has better overall sight lines, then figure skating fans would be perfectly fine with a smaller venue.
  14. I disagree. NBC's ratings for the Beijing Games were dismal. I'm not sure how good the ratings were for Tokyo either, but the shine is off the Olympics with the US viewing public right now. I could be wrong, but I'm not seeing a bidding war for future media rights with the other networks. ABC/ESPN certainly don't need the Olympics to fill their channels and streaming platforms, and neither Fox nor CBS have as many additional cable channels to support the same number of hours NBC provides.
  15. No, it won't be an issue. These are two previous hosts from two major NOCs. I'd bet a double of Sapporo and SLC all but guarantees that Toyota renews as a TOP and NBC pays a pretty penny for the new broadcast contract. It's nothing but a win-win and, if the poll results are accurate, I fully expect for both Sapporo and SLC to move to the "targeted dialogue" phase and a 2030-2034 double award at the next IOC session (Summer 2023, right?) or possibly even earlier.
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