Right after the ice dancing event concluded at the 2012 World Figure Skating Championships, this writer received the following statement from a reader:
“I just watched the ice dance final on Canadian television and am so angry about the scoring for the U.S. team! There is NO wondering why people don’t like to watch skating competitions as much anymore. They might as well not even hold them at all, because they are not true competitions. I just had to say!”
This comment does make one think. Is ice dancing the one figure skating discipline that is “fixed?”
Yes, in the “old days,” many people said that the placements of ice dancers were set before the event, but the new IJS International Judging System for figure skating was supposed to change that.
In his article, “Ice dance: as always, c’est ridicle,” Philip Hersh of the Chicago Tribune said the following after the short dance portion of the 2012 World Figure Skating Championship ice-dance event:
“…I still don’t believe there is anything rational or mathematical about ice dance judging, no matter how people swear the new judging system has cleaned up a discipline in which the results had been a predetermined fraud for decades.”
Some Colorado Springs ice skating fans are also saying that the final ice dance standings for the 2012 World Figure Skating Championships were decided in advance.
The way things used to work in figure skating was this:
Figure skaters waited their turn. Competitive ice dancers especially waited in “line.”
In the “old days,” the top teams, Meryl Davis & Charlie White and Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir would have “turned pro” by 2012. Maia and Alex Shibutani’s third place finish at the 2011 Worlds would have given them an almost automatic “in to win” at the 2012 Worlds and perhaps made them a favorite for the 2014 Olympic ice dance title.
Things don’t work that way anymore. The Shibutanis (who once lived and trained right here in Colorado Springs) messed up their twizzles in 2012. That took them out of medal contention, but if Virtue & Moir or Davis & White had messed up their twizzles, they may have still stayed at the top.
The ISU Judging System perhaps has changed things slightly. Single skating and pair skating are no longer the same, but ice dancing may be just a bit more predictable. Ice dancers always waited in line. Once in awhile, their “place” could be seized, but that was rare. What skating fans observe now, is that ice dancers still wait their turn.
- Famous Olympic ice dancers
- All about figure skating scoring
- Ice skating history