Skating Fridays

Sectionals Recap – Part 2

Now that the open freestyle event was behind me, it was time to focus on the championship event. I tried to follow the same pre-competition formula from the previous day, but obviously my nerves were a bit more active. This was the championship event, after all.

Because I was second in the skate order for my group, I got to have a full warmup (previously, I was first during the open event and didn’t execute all my elements so I wouldn’t be tired). I did all my jumps and spins, and everything felt strong.

I skated to my starting spot after being announced and off we went. Similar to the previous day, adrenaline took over and I sped through my first spin. I was a few seconds early during the choreographic step sequence and got to spend more time on my second spin.

My mind had a blip during both axels, and the first felt slightly cheated, while I knew the second was under-rotated.

Let’s see the protocol, shall we?

2020 Sectionals champ protocol

  1. SSp2: I attempted an illusion entry into this spin but the technical specialists have been tough on me all season. It hasn’t been called in my last 3 competitions but had been called last season. I’ll need to continue to get my free leg up higher for it to count. Regardless, I earned a respectable level 2 spin with positive grades of execution (GOE).
  2. ChSt1: This has been such a breath of fresh air for me. In previous seasons, I earned negative GOEs on this element but I’m happy to see it tilt towards the positive side. Hooray!
  3. 1F+1T: My single flip + single toe loop combination continues to be consistently fine. Thank goodness!
  4. CCoSp3: Um, yeah. I have NO IDEA what happened here! Sometimes, I will practice this as a level 3 but fall down towards the end. During the actual competition, I don’t know what I executed! In my foggy memory, I recall holding a basic camel position for 3-4 revolutions, then I transitioned to an upright variation for 3-4 revolutions. From there, I switched feet into a back sit spin with a core twist. I counted to 4 before I stood up into a back upright spin. In my mind, that was a level 2 change foot combination spin (CCoSp2). SOMEHOW, the panel gave me credit for a level 3 spin plus positive GOE! I’m not complaining at all – but I am just baffled! I’ll need to review the video once it’s available.
  5. 1A: This felt only slightly cheated but I guess I was more than 1/2 revolution off. Darn it!
  6. 1F+1Lo+1Lo: I received negative GOE on this jump combination the previous day because I caught an edge in between the elements. Thankfully, I executed it well during the championship event.
  7. 1S: I originally planned on attempting a 2S but changed my mind about a month ago. The double is not ready for prime time yet.
  8. 1A+1T: The second axel of the program definitely felt under-rotated. At least the toe loop didn’t get dashed, because that’s what happened the previous day and in the other competition I just completed a few weeks ago.
  9. CSp1: I was having trouble getting the level called on this spin recently and was pleased to see it count today. I need to find another spin that earns me more points.

At the end of the day, I earned 11th place out of a strong field of 22 gold ladies. I’m pleased with the outcome, as I have slowly improved my placement year over year.

Now that I know where my weaknesses are (I’m looking at you, competition axel!), I know where to focus my efforts.

One more recap to go – the Dramatic Entertainment!


  1. March 20, 2020 / 7:49 pm

    All those neutral and positive GOEs are a really good sign. Good for you, Eva, using the scores as a way of understanding yourself better as a skater. Those championship events are challenging, and it’s clear that you benefitted from performing rather than just seeing it as “medal or bust!” Looking forward to the dramatic recap!

    • evabakes
      March 21, 2020 / 7:09 am

      I think another big factor is the mental training. I can be the most prepared skater out there (physically) but if my mental game isn’t there, then things could be disastrous. I hope fellow skaters are also spending time with their mental prep!

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