My figures events at the 2014 Sherwood Invitational.
Unlike last year, we had 30 minutes of practice ice after an ice cut after the previous practice ice. Ice was generally quite nice, as per usual; although at the lobby end patch (which I was on) there were some toe pick holes. As per usual Coach Kelli was there to get me put together. I was actually a little disoriented as the ice was so smooth! Much better, of course, than the horrible ice I had last week at Chandler and much better even than the usual ice I skate on at Gilbert. So that threw me just a little :-) and of course my nerves were running amok. We had plenty of time to work out some kinks in my FO8 and FI8. I did manage to hit a nasty hole while practicing the FO8 and went splat! No harm, no foul though and it actually kind of loosened me up a bit, so that was perhaps just as well.
My expectations for this competition were pretty low, mostly because I had had so little practice since the beginning of April with the Chandler rink being closed and also traveling a lot. On top of that my flight into Portland, already scheduled pretty late, was delayed by an hour and 15 minutes. So between all that I didn't get to bed until roughly 1:30 a.m.; and then I was too keyed up to sleep for another 45 minutes to an hour. So with all that I was operating on about 4 hours of sleep.
After our practice ice was over I had some time as my two events (FO8, FI8) were the last of 5 figures being skated. I drew the first position for each event -- the same three of us were skating both figures. I had a couple of minutes to re-warmup and then out I went to start. Kelli gave me some last minute suggestions as to good places to start; I had to move over a bit from where I initially wanted to start as I realized I would be too close to the wall, and I also didn't want to come to close to the blue line lest I get faulted for using it as a tangent. Found my spot, marked my center, deep breath, and pushed off... It went pretty well. I had a couple of moments of uncontrolled-upper-body issues that worried me; and I cut off the circle a bit on the first RFO so I had to fix it the next time. My tracing was generally okay and I thought my circles were reasonably okay but my flow needs work and my body positions need to be held more consistently, I think. After I was done I skated off and conferred with Kelli.
She was very pleased that I'd managed to correct my RFO circle. Then she informed me that I had skated the whole figure without breathing and I should not do that! I had to laugh. Holding my breath is a bad habit I guess. She suggested I make it a point to breathe on each restart. After a little bit of a wait (I had a little time to warmup the FI8) it was time for the next figure.
Skated over and picked a spot, deep breath :-) and pushed off. All in all it went quite well I thought. In looking at it after I was done I could see that I'd done a really good job of tracing, which I was happy about. However I also noticed that while my circles were about the same size, they were offset from each other a bit. I've noticed this problem before. Grrr.
The FO8 results were posted - I got 3rd; two 2nd place ordinals and one 3rd place ordinal. Placements were all over the map so I could just as easily have gotten 2nd. I was pretty happy with that. Eventually the FI8 results came out and I was 3rd there also, but I got a 1st place ordinal! Along with two 3rd place ordinals. So that made me happy.
All in all I can't complain. I feel like all things considered I did pretty well. It makes me want to work harder and get the darn Preliminary test passed and really wow 'em next year.