Sometimes the so-called “human drama of athletic competition” results in storybook endings for what’s perceived as the most deserving participants. More often than not, though, they miss the mark. What I’m doing with the recent World Championships summaries is take a few stories from each discipline, and put my own little spin on them (including how they’ve turned out… for now). Starting with pairs this time…
The Princess and the Pancakes
Once upon a time there were two good pairs skating teams. One featured a strong and likeable guy known as Trankov, but he was paired with what appeared to the world to be a fragile princess… with whom he couldn’t find chemistry if he was stuck with her overnight in a laboratory. The other team sported a fine lady known as Volosozhar… but her partner Morozov, with whom she found some success both on and off the ice, tragically had the physical build of a stack of pancakes. Eventually Trankov left the princess behind, Morozov opted for retirement, and a new partnership was born…Volosozhar/Trankov, who, thankfully, are now helping explain the difference between good and great pairs skating teams.
The Accidental Bloodletter
There once was a lovely young lady named Duhamel who faced one teeny tiny problem with her pairs partners… she created emergencies at the damndest of times. With a fellow named Buntin, she famously sliced his hand into a bloody mess at a 2009 GP event when her skate blade came too close for comfort during their free skate. Then, upon Buntin’s retirement, she teamed up with a fellow known as Radford. With whom she even more famously broke his nose during the 2011 Worlds (during the triple twist in their SP). Will Radford run in fear once the swelling in his nose goes down? Tune in for next year’s thrilling sequel, The Man Who Got Stabbed in the Leg During a Throw Triple Lutz.
The American Dreamers
Once upon a time there was a U.S. pairs team who worked very hard to get as consistently good with their free skate as they typically were with their short program. One season they finally succeeded with this mission, became filled with promise for the future, and… oh, wait. Never mind.
Coming next time: the men’s wrapup!