By: Kristen Hegel
From January 22 through the 30, the Greensboro Coliseum hosted the 2011 US Figure Skating Championships, and the city of Greensboro was flooded with figure skaters and fans from across the US.
The first few days of the competition consisted of novice men, novice ladies, novice pairs, junior men, junior ladies and junior pairs. Later in the week came ice dancing, where Olympic silver medalists and defending champions, Meryl Davis and Charlie White, took first place for the third year straight.
When the time came for senior ladies short program and free skate, the crowds began to pour in. Alissa Czisny won her second title as national champion with a final score of 191.24, beating the defending champion, Rachel Flatt, by almost 8 points.
“This one definitely means more to me. The first one is always the first one, but to win with two good performances made this one a lot sweeter. Also, to be able to come back after everything hat happened last year, to start as a fresh skater, just confirmed I made the right choices,” Czisny said.
Mirai Nagasu, who came in third place at 177.26 points, stated, “I’m actually really disappointed I don’t get to go to worlds. It’s in Japan and that’s where the rest of my family is.” Agnes Zawadski came in fourth as a pewter medalist.
Twenty-seven-year-old Ryan Bradley was names the men’s national champion for the first time in his career with 231.90 points. He even beat the two-time defending champion, Jeremy Abott, who placed fourth. “I’m extremely disappointed. It’s hard,” Abbot said.
Richard Dornbush came in second place with a score of 225.56 points and Ross Miner won third. “Every time someone dropped below us, I’d shake Ross’ hand. We were both pretty excited to skate great programs. That was pretty much it,” Dornbush stated.
The winners from each group made an appearance by skating in the Smucker’s Skating Spectacular show, as did Olympic Gold Medalist, Evan Lysacek. After a long week of wins in Greensboro and over 110,000 tickets sold, things began to wind down. The 2011 National Championships proved to be successful.