Today I have a guest post. I attended Skate Canada last weekend with a larger group of family and friends. While I am 100% #TeamHanyu, that was not the case for everyone I was with. #TeamChan was present in full force. I’m yet to share my thoughts on the topic, and while I organize those, I want to share with you a friend’s thoughts on Skate Canada and the return of Patrick Chan.
When we left Lethbridge, Justine told me I could write whatever I wanted about Patrick Chan. She knows I have always been a fan of Patrick and I still am. When he skates as he did on Saturday, he brings tears to my eyes. I love to watch him! The perfectly executed quad/triple has such speed, strength, flow, line…. it’s a thing of beauty. The silence in the rink as he flies across the ice in an amazing footwork sequence attests to his command of the blade. Patrick will always be one of my favourite skaters.
I was worried when I heard that Patrick was returning to competition. Would this be a disaster? An embarrassment? I feared that Patrick couldn’t hold up to the new crop of men’s talent. Did he do that in Lethbridge? Yes…but was Yuzuru at his best? Unfortunately not. And that is what figure skating is all about – who is the best on any given day. Perhaps there was a bit of Chanflation involved in the scores Patrick achieved, perhaps not – I’m certainly not a judge and can’t say for sure.
Justine’s previous post expressed concerns that Skate Canada is loosing sight of the big goal and focusing on the “Return of Patrick”. I hope this isn’t the case. I would hope they realize there is room for more than one star at any given time. Perhaps they will provide an explanation of why it appeared that Nam was passed over for Sunday’s gala – this might serve to appease fans – or at least, explain the situation.
I don’t know if Patrick will be able to increase his technical difficulty to match the best in the world (Yuzu, Javier, Nam, etc.). If not, I hope that he has the wisdom and grace to step back and make room for others. I have never accepted when athletes say they are ‘doing it for themselves’ – they aren’t; they are representing their country and are taking a competition spot that could be given to others. So my hope is that Patrick will earn his place in a fair manner and at the appropriate time, will pass the torch.
I am very happy that I had another opportunity to witness Patrick at Skate Canada 2015. It was wonderful!!
Thanks Justine, for allowing me to express my opinions on this!