Monday, February 17, 2014

Sochi Olympic Sojourns VIII: A Celebration of U.S. Ice Dance

With Meryl Davis & Charlie White now the first-ever Olympic Champions in Ice Dance from the U.S., I thought I’d do something a little different... especially since I don’t do a good job of deciphering ice dance at face value, and I have not taken the time yet to examine the free dance protocols... (like I could decipher them thoroughly anyway)

In honor of the Davis/White victory, here’s a list of  what I believe is EVERY U.S. ice dance team to have competed in the Olympics since the sport joined the Games in 1976 (along with their placement). They’ve all paved the way for today!

Colleen O’Connor/Jim Milns, 1976/Bronze
Judi Genovesi/Kent Weigle, 1976/15th
Susie Kelley/Andrew Stroukoff, 1976/17th

Stacey Smith/John Sumners, 1980/9th
Judy Blumberg/Michael Siebert, 1980 & 1984/7th & 4th
(Special mention here because, as you might already know, Blumberg/Siebert would have won bronze in ’84 had a judge not deemed their FD music to be “dance music”. The selection they used? The same thing Davis/White just won with... Scheherazade.)
Carol Fox/Richard Dalley, 1984/5th

Suzie Semanick/Scott Gregory, 1988/6th
Susie Wynne/Joseph Druar, 1988/11th

April Sargent/Russ Witherby, 1992/11th
Rachel Mayer/Peter Breen, 1992/15th

Elizabeth Punsulan/Jerod Swallow, 1994 & 1998/15th & 7th
Jessica Joseph/Charles Butler, 1998/21st

Naomi Lang/Peter Tchernyshev, 2002/11th
Tanith Belbin/Benjamin Agosto, 2006 & 2010/Silver & 4th

Melissa Gregory/Denis Petukhov, 2006/14th
Jamie Silverstein/Ryan O’Meara, 2006/16th
Emily Samuelson/Evan Bates, 2010/11th

AND... a very honorable mention goes to Judy Schwomeyer/James Sladky, who were National Champs from 1968-72, World medalists from 1969-72, and about the only U.S. team with as much dominance for its time as Davis/White. Might as well hand them a retrofitted 1972 Olympic medal while we’re at it, right?

And to get an appreciation for just how much ice dance has changed since those times, here is Schwomeyer/Sladky’s FD from 1972 Nats!

I continue to live-tweet as much as I can... follow me on Twitter @KLBSt8ofSk8. 

An Every-Four-Years-Fan Guide to the Ladies is still to come, followed (pretty quickly) by the Ladies Preview/Predictions... all before the action starts up again Wednesday! 

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