Female Athletes in Sochi Timeline
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Jan. 28, 2008 – Four of the top female figure skaters in the nation, the youngest collection of stars in the history of U.S. skating, waved from the top of the podium Saturday night at the U.S. national championships.
Gold medal winner Mirai Nagasu, who at 14 is the second-youngest U.S. “women’s” champion ever, along with a trio of ladies in waiting: 15-year-old Rachael Flatt, 16-year-old Ashley Wagner and 14-year-old Caroline Zhang.
Unfortunately, three of the four cannot go to the World Championships in March because of a minimum-age rule that is enforced at only one big competition this year, the same competition that is so essential to sending a young skater on her way to greatness. The Worlds.
Christine Brennan wonders why U.S. officials don’t leap to these young skaters’ defense. Read more.
ST. PAUL, Minn. Jan. 27, 2008 – On a night when a new generation came to the fore, Mirai Nagasu overcame a fall on her opening double Axel and a third-place finish in the free skate to capture the U.S. title.The ninth grader from Arcadia, Calif., became only the second skater in history to win the U.S. senior ladies crown the season after taking the junior title.
In a quandary for U.S. Figure Skating’s International Committee, the top two finishers, Nagasu and Rachael Flatt, are both too young under International Skating Union (ISU) rules to compete at the 2008 World Championships in Gothenburg, Sweden.
With their gold and silver medalists unavailable, the committee named bronze medalist Ashley Wagner; fifth-place finisher Bebe Liang; and 2006 world champion Kimberly Meissner, who placed a devastating seventh in Saint Paul, to the 2008 world team.
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