Canton Victory Party

photos from M&C's facebook page and below article link

Victory party honors elite Canton skaters

Tandems, coaches motivated for even more success

BY JO-ANN BARNAS

With blue and silver balloons dancing above the tables -- and with the skaters' top performances playing on an overhead television -- Canton Township on Tuesday was finally able to throw its ice dancing champions a hometown victory party.

The event honored the success of the Arctic FigureSkating Club and its trio of teams that swept the podium at the world championships on April 30 in Moscow: gold medalists Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the U.S.; silver medalists Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada; and bronze medalists Alex Shibutani and Maia Shibutani of the U.S.

Although the event was a celebration of the past, it was clear that it has been full-steam ahead for the skaters and their coaches. "The minute worlds ended, you start thinking about next season," said Igor Shpilband, who coaches the teams with Marina Zoueva.

Zoueva added: "This has energized me. We're doing it absolutely right. We have individual success but in our group, it's a team."

So what has been happening at the Arctic Edge Arena the past few weeks? Plenty.

Each of the world team medalists have been training and working on new lifts and programs -- including Virtue and Moir, the 2010 Olympic gold medalists, who said they haven't decided whether they're going to compete next season.

Meanwhile, in keeping with tradition, the coaches and teams are holding off revealing the music selections for their programs until later this summer.

"We do have music, but it's going to be a surprise," said Alex Shibutani, who competes with his sister.

White said with a smile: "When we build it, you will know."

Shpilband said that Madison Chock, who took ninth at worlds with Greg Zuerlein (who retired after the season), has had several tryouts with potential partners. There's also the news of another acclaimed team that has split: Emily Samuelson and Evan Bates.

Samuelson and Bates, two-time U.S. medalists and 2010 Olympians who have competed together since 2001, ended their partnership several weeks ago, their coaches said. They didn't compete last season because of Bates' severe Achilles' tendon injury; each is looking for new partners.

As for Davis and White, who became the first American ice dancers to win the gold medal at worlds in Moscow, they don't intend on growing tired of being introduced as world champions this upcoming season.

"We're at the point in our careers where we've learned to enjoy every aspect of it," Davis said.

1 Comentário:

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