Romance and Mystery Novels

by Alina Adams

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Thursday, March 23, 2006


I have only ever worked one Canada-based skating competition. The World Championships in Edmonton in 1996 for ABC.

As a result, I am of two minds when it comes to Canada and skating fans.

On the one hand, never have I met an all-around nicer bunch of people. Organizers, volunteers, interns -- all to a man/woman are friendly, polite, sweet, generous and hard-working. In that respect, I love the Canadians and always look forward to visiting, whether for job or pleasure.

On the other hand, there was that moment during the Ice Dance competition, when we were waiting for the judges' marks for Bourne & Kraatz and there was a possibility of them ending up off the podium yet again. The crowd in the arena stomped their feet, they screamed, they chanted, they literally shook the bleachers so hard that, for the first time ever in my skating career, I genuinely worried we'd have a riot on our hands if the results weren't to their liking. Fortunately, the results were to their liking. And the Mr. Canadian Hydes turned back into Dr. Jeckylls.

After that experience, whenever talk swirls about accusing Russian/French/American judges of fudging results and holding up their own, I think about Bourne & Kraatz's first World Medal in Edmonton. I think about them winning their first Grand Prix Final in 2001 -- in Kitchener, Ontario. And Pair skaters Jamie Sale and David Pelletier winning that year in Kitchener, as well.

Now, I look at the to-date standings at Worlds, with Canada's Joannie Rochette in first place after the Qualifying after only finishing 11th the year before, Dubreil and Lauzon in second after the Compulsory Dances after being 7th last year, Pairs Marcoux and Buntin in 5th overall up from 9th in 2005, and defending World Silver Medalist Jeffrey Buttle still in Medal contention (4th) despite a less than stellar Short Program. And I remember: Canadians, on home turf, can be very scary.

(In other news, way to go Kimmie Meissner and Emily Hughes!)


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