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Remembering and Reflecting After the 2009 AT&T US Figure Skating Championships

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Figure Skaters Brandon Mroz, Jeremy Abbott, Evan Lysacek and Ryan Bradley Pose Together

Figure Skaters Brandon Mroz, Jeremy Abbott, Evan Lysacek and Ryan Bradley Pose Together

Photo by Matthew Stockman - Getty Images

Not An Olympic Preview :

(January, 2009)

In the past, the United States National Figure Skating Championships that is held just before an Olympic year helps to give those involved in figure skating some idea about who may be competing in the Olympics, but instead, in 2009, the competition left everyone wondering what will happen in 2010.

A Different Girl Each Year:

Most people don't expect 2009's world figure skating team to be 2010's Olympic figure skating team. Also, many say that an American won't medal in the Ladies' event in Vancouver.

The reason for this bleak forecast is that since the 2006 Olympics, the US has had a different Ladies champion each year. There hasn't been time for any American lady to gain the much needed international figure skating experience and prestige.

Although 2009 US Ladies Champion, Alissa Czisny, qualified for the World Figure Skating Championships, in 2007, many don't feel she possesses the qualities of a world or Olympic skating champion.

Sasha Cohen or Michelle Kwan May Return:

It has been announced that 2006 Olympic Silver Medalist, Sasha Cohen, or nine-time US Ladies Figure Skating Champion and figure skating legend, Michelle Kwan, may return and try out for the 2010 Olympics. It has been said that their presence may make the 2010 US National Figure Skating Championships quite dramatic.

Johnny Weir Out:

2006 Olympian and three-time US Men's Figure Skating Champion, Johnny Weir, did not skate well at the 2009 US Figure Skating Championships. He placed 5th overall, and did not qualify for the 2009 World Figure Skating Championships.

Quadruple Jump and Eight Triples Did It For Brandon Mroz:

Brandon Mroz landed a clean quadruple toe loop and eight triples jumps in the Men's Free Skate event. He did not win the Free Skate, but earned the highest technical score. He moved up from fourth place after the Short Program to second overall.

Denney and Barrett Rose to the Top:

Caydee Denney and Jeremy Barrett, from Southwest Florida, paired up in June of 2008. The newly formed pair skating team received the highest technical score in both their short and long programs, and won the silver medal. They showed everyone that the new International Judging System (IJS) rewards those who are able to successfully do the most difficult elements.

New Ice Dance Champions:

Five-time US Ice Dance Champions, Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto, did not compete at the 2009 US Figure Skating Championships due to injury. Since Belbin and Agosto were not present, Meryl Davis and Charlie White easily won the event.

Keauna McLaughlin and Rockne Brubaker Won Again:

Only one of the US Figure Skating titles from 2008 was gained again in 2009. Keauna McLaughlin and Rockne Brubaker came from behind after the pairs short program and won the long program because of their high component score.

Jeremy Abbott Wins:

2008 Grand Prix Final Men's Champion, Jeremy Abbott, skated a dazzling short program, but didn't do the best he could do in his long program. That didn't matter, since he received a very high component score, and won the men's event.

2009 US Figure Skating World Team Members:

Below are the skaters who were chosen for the 2009 US World Figure Skating Team. (The skaters who were chosen, with the exception of Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto, received their world team assignments based on their showing at the 2009 US Figure Skating Championships.)

Ladies

2009 World Championships

Men's

2009 World Championships

Pairs

2009 World Championships

Ice Dancing

2009 World Championships

Colorado Springs - A Figure Skating Capital:

Many of the medals awarded at the 2009 US Figure Skating Champiionships were awarded to figure skaters from Colorado Springs, Colorado and the Broadmoor Skatiing Club. US Men's Champion, Jeremy Abbott, US Silver Medalist, Brandon Mroz, US Pewter Medalist, Ryan Bradley, US Silver Medalist, Rachael Flatt, and US National Novice Men's Champion, Joshua Farris all skate there under figure skating coach, Tom Zakrajsek. US pair skating champions, Keauna McLaughlin and Rockne Brubaker, also train in Colorado Springs under coach Dalilah Sappenfield. The club also had skaters win medals in junior and novice dance and in junior pairs.

The Broadmoor Skating Club's many medals in 2008 and 2009 have caused some people to call the Colorado Springs World Arena Ice Hall the "Yankee Stadium of the Ice Skating World" or "Skatetown USA."

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