Insights Ahead of the 2019 Geico U.S. Figure Skating Championships
In the world of figure skating, just about everyone knows that the most elite competition in the United States is the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, otherwise known as Nationals. From January 18 to January 27 in Detroit, skaters from around the United States will compete for a spot on Team USA, allowing them to represent our country internationally. Skaters train their whole lives in order to compete at this level. The Geico Figure Skating Championship will include juvenile through senior levels of skating–and every four years, the U.S. Olympic team is determined from the event.
Insights into the 2019 Championships
The U.S. Figure Skating Championships are sanctioned by U.S. Figure Skating, the national governing body for the sport. Four disciplines–men’s singles, ladies’ singles, pairs skating, and ice dancing–offer the chance to compete for gold, silver, bronze, or pewter medals. In order to compete at the championships, athletes must first be successful at qualifying competitions.
The qualifying process for Nationals starts at the regional level. The regions included are New England, North Atlantic, South Atlantic, Upper Great Lakes, Eastern Great Lakes, Southwestern, Northwest Pacific, Central Pacific, and Southwest Pacific. Athletes who attend these events must place in the top four in order to qualify for one of the three sectional competitions, Eastern, Midwestern, and Pacific Coast. Placing in the top four at sectionals will secure a coveted spot in the U.S. Figure Skating Championships.
Who to Look Out For
Each year, several exceptional athletes stand out from the crowd. Keep an eye out for the following incredible skaters whose performances we’ll be sure to catch:
- Bradie Tennell, Championship Ladies
- Mirai Nagasu, Championship Ladies
- Karen Chen, Championship Ladies
- Nathan Chen, Championship Men
- Vincent Zhou, Championship Men
- Alexa and Chris Knierim, Championship Pairs
- Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue, Championship Ice Dance
- Madison Chock and Evan Bates, Championship Ice Dance
On January 6 from 10:30 a.m. to noon, Toyota will present a special event called Learn to Skate USA SkateFest. Free and open to the public, this event provides an opportunity for those who want to partake in group lessons based on their experience level. SkateFest will be held at Campus Martius Ice Rink in Detroit.
The U.S. Figure Skating Get Up campaign will also be making an appearance during Nationals. The campaign is an inspiring reminder that the sport of figure skating is one that requires perseverance and grit. According to the campaign’s message, the attitude that you can get up after a difficult fall or unfavorable routine in competition will provide you with life-long lessons on and off the ice. At the U.S. Figure Skating Championships, members of the organization will be recognizing individuals and companies in Detroit that demonstrate this philosophy. Several stories will be featured on the campaign’s website and shared in-venue during the events.
If you’re planning to attend this exhilarating week of events, take a look at the schedule to ensure you don’t miss your favorite performance:
- Friday, Jan. 18 – Juvenile boys and girls free skate, juvenile pairs free skate, and intermediate ladies and men’s short program
- Saturday, Jan. 19 – Juvenile pattern dance, intermediate pairs free skate, intermediate pattern dance, intermediate ladies and men’s free skate
- Sunday, Jan. 20 – Juvenile free dance, intermediate free dance
- Monday, Jan. 21 – Novice pattern dance, novice ladies, men’s, and pairs short program
- Tuesday, Jan. 22 – Novice ladies, men’s, and pairs free skate, novice free dance, junior ladies and men’s short program
- Wednesday, Jan. 23 – Junior pairs short program, junior rhythm dance, junior ladies and men’s free skate
- Thursday, Jan. 24 – Junior pairs free skate, championship pairs short program, championship ladies short program
- Friday, Jan. 25 – Junior free dance, championship rhythm dance opening ceremonies, championship ladies free skate
- Saturday, Jan. 26 – Championship pairs free skate, championship men’s short program, championship free dance
- Sunday, Jan. 27 – Championship men’s free skate, Skating Spectacular
Prepare for Your Competitions with Riedell Skates
Whether you’re a beginner figure skater or an experienced skater heading off to the Championships, you’ll want to have the best figure skates possible. Custom figure skates from Riedell can give you that competitive edge. Head to one of our authorized dealers today, or contact us to learn about how our master craftsmen can create a skate tailored to your specific feet, making you more comfortable while on the ice.