pre-Worlds article

Figure skaters Charlie White, Meryl Davis rolling into Worlds


Presumably, the question asked of Charlie White, one half of the five-time U.S. ice dancing championship team, was regarding his undergraduate studies.
White and partner Meryl Davis are Michigan students.
But when asked during a national conference call Monday how things were going at school, White responded like an every-day student who has a major interest in all things athletics.
"Big basketball win," White said, referring to Michigan's over Illinois. "Obviously, I'm going straight to (discussing) U-M sports. It looks like a strong 2013 football (recruiting) class. There's a bright future."
What's next? His own Michigan sports blog?
The purpose of the call, however, wasn't to get White's opinions on the various Wolverines teams, but to address his preparations with Davis for the World Figure Skating Championships next month in London, Ontario.
Davis and White, the 2010 Olympic silver medalists, are coming off their fifth national title, won last month.
The partners, who have been together since 1997 and train at Arctic Edge Ice Arena in Canton, won the 2011 World Championships, but were second last year.
Both are confident in their chances heading into this year's championships, March 11-17.
"We've had a really enjoyable season so far both on and off the ice," Davis said.
"We feel we've made continued growth throughout season, which is really what we've striven for. We're excited and can't wait for the World Championships."
A key factor for the pair has been the fact they've remained healthy, which has allowed them to compete as a part at their best.
"Which is hard to do at this level," White said. "It's been fun. We're still really enjoying our programs, which makes a big difference."
Davis said the key this season has been fulfilling the teams' goal of constant improvement.
"Charlie and I are really all about growth and taking ourselves to the max," Davis said. "We've grown so much, but we really want to show not only our athletic growth but also our growth in performance, our growth in our confidence.
"Across the board we feel stronger than we have before."
Their free-skate program has a special feel for them, Davis and White said on the conference call. But White said it's difficult to explain why.
"Part of it is luck, part of it is good coaching," White said. "Each is built upon the last. We're really feeling like it's the most well-rounded of all our programs. It brings everything to the table, and that's what makes it great. That's going to give us our opportunity to win Worlds.
"I think we have different moments in our past that we have favorite performances, but I think we really like all of our programs and appreciate them for what they did for us in our career. It's hard to compare them because you put so much work into them. I think every year the program we're doing at the time is probably our favorite because we're putting so much into it and I think we feel that way this year, as well."
This is the final figure skating World Championships before next year's Olympics.
"Everyone wants to make an impression," White said.
A deep, talented field will compete for the title in Canada, but Davis and White take years of experience and the knowledge they've gained from having won before.
"We have experience, (and) we have experience being world champions," White said. "We've been together 15 years. We know what it takes. We know what it takes training-wise.
"Basically, we have to go there and execute. There's no tricks or anything like that. It's just a matter of doing our job the way we know we can and giving ourselves the best opportunity. I think that's something the crowd has come to expect out of Meryl and I, is just two really solid performances. We're excited to be able to go and just skate our hearts out."


From The Detroit News: http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130226/SPORTS07/302260332#ixzz2M2fyXqrA

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