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 Figure Skating


Tara Lipinski and Michelle Kwan
AFP Photo
Lipinski Undecided for 2002;
Kwan Undeterred in Quest

Although she is still glowing from her gold medal moment, Tara Lipinski (middle), isn't making any promises to defend her title at the 2002 Games in Salt Lake City. Runner-up Michelle Kwan (left), on the other hand, is making plans to renew her quest for a gold medal.

 Lipinksi Says She'll Compete in World Championships
 Skaters Get on Good Foot In Hot Exhibition Finale

In Ode to Joy, Lipinski Glides Past Kwan for Gold
Tara Lipinski
Joel Richardson/The Washington Post
Tara Lipinski (pictured) put together a magnificent free skate Feb. 20 and defeated fellow American Michelle Kwan for the gold medal in women's figure skating. At 15, Lipinski is the youngest gold medalist in the event's history. Lu Chen of China won the bronze; Nicole Bobek of the United States finished 17th. "I went out and had a great time," Lipinski said later. "I didn't think about winning."

 Judges' Scoring Cards
 Bobek Struggles Again
 MICHAEL WILBON: As a Sport, It Just Doesn't Figure
 NOTEBOOK: Chen Surprises Herself With Bronze


Lipinski's Surprise Victory Was a Triumph of the Spirit
Tara Lipinski is a bubbly, enthusiastic skater who skates as if she wants to connect with every individual. No one expected her to outshine Michelle Kwan, however, but Jennifer Frey writes that Lipinski beat the gold-medal favorite with a spirit and joy that filled the entire building.

BEFORE THE LONG PROGRAM:

 Kwan Hides a Fire Under Grace
 Chinese Americans Bask in Spotlight
 JENNIFER FREY: Tara Lipinski Comes of Age
 Good as Gold, Kwan a Runaway Favorite


Annissina and Peizerat
AFP Photo
Russian Team Takes Gold
The controversial Russian ice dancing team of Yevgeny Platov and Pasha Grishuk stretched their unbeaten streak to 22 events while becoming the first couple to repeat as Olympic champions. Russians Anjelika Krylova and Oleg Ovsyannikov took the bronze, while France's Marina Anissina and Gwendal Peizerat (pictured) took the bronze.

 Pain Eases for American Dancer


Critics of Ice Dancing Push For Judging Reforms
Skaters, coaches and even some judges are calling for judging reform in ice dancing. In response, figure skating's international governing body introduced guidelines for deducting more points when an ice dancer falls. The guidelines would be included in the official rule book only after a vote by the International Skating Union Congress in Stockholm.

 Judge Says Ice Dancing Rules Not Followed

Kulik Gives Russia Its Second Consecutive Gold
Todd Eldredge Misses a Medal Again
Amy Sancetta/AP
Russian Ilia Kulik gave a scintillating performance in the free skate to give Russia its second consecutive gold medal in men's figure skating. American Todd Eldredge (pictured) finished a disappointing fourth. Canada's Elvis Stojko, overcame a groin injury to win the silver, while France's Philippe Candeloro stirred the crowd and the judges to take the bronze. Fairfax's Michael Weiss finished seventh.

 JAN. 10: Stojko Lands Fourth Canadian Title
 JAN. 9: Eldredge Wins Fifth National Title

Eldredge Pays the Price for a Routine Performance
Todd Eldredge said he was not tense before he took the ice at White Ring for the men's long program Feb. 14. The Post's Jennifer Frey, however, saw the performance of a man tied up in knots, who, unlike France's Philippe Candeloro, was unwilling to give everything he had in his routine.

Michael Weiss
Joel Richardson/The Post
Fairfax's Weiss Takes Tumble
In Disappointing Olympic Debut

Fairfax's Michael Weiss (pictured) opened too wide on his triple Axel in the men's short program Feb. 12 and landed on his knees, finishing 11th. Afterward, he said: "It's tough to come out and hit all eight elements. You make one mistake, and that's the end of the program."

 The Fall, in Pictures


Kyoko Ina and Jason Dungjen
AP Photo
Russians Take Gold, Silver in Pairs
Russian Artur Dmitriev became the first man to win Olympics with different partners Feb. 10 when he carried new partner Oksana Kazakova to Olympic gold. Russians Yelena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze took the silver followed by Germans Mandy Woetzel and Ingo Steuer. Americans Kyoko Ina and Jason Dungjen (pictured) were fourth.

 Short Program Long on Controversy


Accidental Pairing Results in a Perfect Couple
Elena Berezhnaya's return to figure skating would be wrongly described as just another comeback. Berezhnaya came back from a near-death experience two years ago when her then-partner, Oleg Sliakhov, skated too close on a side-by-side camel spin and slashed her head open. She survived, thanks to the support of her current partner, Anton Sikharulidze.

Fleming Has Cancer Surgery
Thirty years to the day she won a gold medal at the 1968 Winter Games, Peggy Fleming underwent surgery Feb. 10 for breast cancer.
Ina Confronts Her Heritage
U.S. pairs figure skater Kyoko Ina, born in Tokyo and raised in New York, has struggled with her Asian heritage. That struggle continues as she tentatively conducts interviews in Japanese while feeling somewhat outcast by the Japanese people and their culture.



Figure Skating

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