Today was to have been the culmination of the last year’s worth of hard work for the teams who qualified to compete at the 2020 ISU World Synchronized Skating Championships in Lake Placid, USA. The unfortunate (but understandable) cancellation of the event due to the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic left thousands of people — not least of all, the skaters — heartbroken to miss out on the chance to experience these wonderful programs one last time.
But, as the saying goes, “Necessity is the mother of invention.” To help fill the gap left by the event’s cancellation, teams from around the globe came together to create a Virtual Worlds on Youtube — complete with promo videos for teams, opening ceremonies, and a virtual draw.
Though it’s not exactly the same as watching (or streaming) it live, it’s impossible not to admire the creative teamwork required to bring this digital event together. And there’s no better time to sit back, relax, and enjoy some skating videos, than when you’re at home distancing yourself from the outside world.
The 2014 ISU World Synchronized Skating Championships wrapped up today in Italy, with some familiar names landing on the podium. Finland 1 (Marigold IceUnity) were gold medalists after last medaling in 2011. Canada 1 (NEXXICE) won the silver medal for the third straight year, narrowly edging out Finland 2 (Rockettes), who won bronze after not qualifying for the event last year. All three teams skated clean in both segments, and were the only teams to get all of their technical calls in the short or the free.
If you were in Boston last week at the 2013 World Synchronized Skating Championships, you were fortunate to witness some of the best skating this sport has ever seen. If you couldn’t make it to the event, you can thank the magic of the Internet for providing access to the performances on video, below.
I make a point to attend the World Championships whenever they’re in North America, and while each time I leave feeling that our sport is headed in a great direction, this time I was truly blown away by the improvement I saw across the entire event since being in Colorado in 2010. Every single team has upped their game. The quality of skating from the top teams was particularly incredible, but there wasn’t a team in Boston that didn’t contribute something positive to the intense competitive atmosphere of the event, and didn’t impress me with some aspect of their skating. Thank you to every athlete, coach, manager, choreographer, trainer, and supporting cast member for working your butts off so the rest of us could watch such fabulous skating! (more…)