So today I skated 3 figures for the figures portion of the Sherwood Invitational. Here's how it went...
Kelli had planned on putting me on for the figures part of the competition, but due to a credentialing snafu she wasn't able to, so Sonya came to the rescue and put me on instead.
We had 20 minutes worth of practice ice at 10:55. I got a not-so-great patch assignment, next to the end of the rink. I had a really really hard time getting warmed up... started with FO8s that were pretty bad... moved on to BO8s. Sonya asked me to try to hold the free leg in front for a count of 3... I counter-offered 2 and a half but she wasn't buying :-). Some progress so we moved on to BI8, which was not so great, I had a hard time just coming back around to center. Then our 20 minutes was up. Practice ice flowed immediately into the figures events, which was nice (no ice resurface though).
I was the first one to skate for the FO8, so I moved over to my warmup patch. Warmed up the FO8, which I'd just done :-). Much better this time...the 10 minute warmup was over really quickly! Then the judges called me over and I skated out to my patch, chose a spot, made my mark, and pushed off... R side went really well the first time... L side not as good (common, for me), a little flatting coming back to center. The rest of the FO8 went well, I had pretty good traces to follow and I did my best to trace 'em. Finished and skated off...
I had only about 5 minutes before it was time to warmup for my next event, BO8 (there was a scratch, so I had very little time). Warmed up the BO8 and felt pretty good about it, I was trying hard to concentrate more on getting that free leg in front. Warmup was over, had a drink of water and skated out to the judges once more. I lucked out that this patch had a hockey dot pretty much in the middle :-) so I made my mark a couple of feet from it, in line with it. Started off... it went pretty well. Don't remember details much except that it was pretty easy to find my center :-) and I had pretty good flow. I was happy with it. Finished and skated off...
Again, just about 5 minutes before I had to warmup again for the BI8. I was the last figure in the competition. I was pretty apprehensive about it... warmup wasn't too encouraging but toward the end it was at least flowing halfway okay. Finished the warmup, a last drink of water, and out to my position and started off... it was pretty bad. On the positive side I had some semblance of form, and I did manage to push and get around okay... but my circles were quite small, badly shaped, and I didn't do a good job of returning to center. Still, I had pretty low expectations for this event and I was relatively happy (it could have been much, much worse). Skated off and I was done!
Later I managed to talk to one of the judges and asked her for feedback on the FO8 and BO8... she mentioned a few things -- 1) body position (of course!) needs work; 2) on the BO pushes I'm on 2 feet for too long (this was news to me).. and 3) I really need to work on my sense of circle, I'm tending to cut off the circle/return to center too shallow (this wasn't news to me). Good feedback.
All in all I was very happy with the way I skated. Not perfect, but I think I improved a lot from last year. It amazes me how much more comfortable and confident I am on the BO8 vs. the FO8.
The results were posted somewhat later -- I got 3rd (of 3) on the FO8; I did get one 2nd place ordinal though so that was nice. I didn't have any competition on the BO8 or BI8.
Here's a picture a friend took of my FO8: