Some people within the figure skating world – including many fans, coaches, administrators and ex-competitors - cannot wait until Friday.
That is when the International Skating Union will conclude its biennial congress by electing a successor to Italy’s Ottavio Cinquanta, who has presided over the ISU since 1994.
Many blame Cinquanta for not having done more to halt figure skating’s precipitous decline in popularity in both North America and Europe, the recent Russian revival notwithstanding. (If so, shouldn’t he get also some credit, even second-handedly, for the booming interest in Japan and South Korea?)
Among those critics, a favorite target is the obtuse, overly complicated New Judging System Cinquanta succeeded in getting adopted after the pairs skating imbroglio at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics (where, by the way, the judges had the result right the first time, no matter how loudly Canadians whined or what behind-the-scenes dirty dealings took place in efforts to predetermine the outcome.)
Given the Salt Lake fallout, it is astonishing what might happen in Friday’s election.
The sport (and its ice cousins, short and long track speed skating) can choose as president France’s Didier Gailhaguet, linchpin of attempts to corrupt the results of the 2002 Olympic pairs and dance competitions.Read More