Nicole Bobek (USA) – 1998 Nagano, Figure Skating, Ladies’ Short Program


>> WELCOME BACK TO WHITE RING. THE LAST OF THE AMERICAN LADIES ON THE ICE IN HER FIRST OLYMPICS. 20-YEAR-OLD NICOLE BOBEK. HER MOTHER WATCHES FROM THE STANDS. THE MUSIC IS “ZORBA THE GREEK” BY HERB ALBERT.>>HER OPENING TWO JUMPING PASSES ARE SO CRUCIAL. FIRST ONE, TRIPLE LUTZ COMBINATION, TRIPLE LUTZ, FALL ON THE LANDING. SHE DIDN’T GET ALL THE WAY AROUND. MANDATORY .4 DEDUCTION. TRIPLE TOE LOOP, DOUBLE.>>NICOLE BOBEK ARRIVED AT THE BUILDING A LITTLE OVER A HALF AN HOUR BEFORE THE WARM-UP, AND HER WARM-UPS DID NOT GO WELL.>>SHE’S BEEN STRUGGLING WITH CONSISTENCY IN THE JUMPS. WHATEVER TIME YOU ARRIVE IS YOUR CHOICE. SOME PEOPLE LIKE TO GET THERE LATE. SOME PEOPLE LIKE TO GET THERE VERY WELL. I’M ONE THAT LIKES TO GET THERE EARLY. DOUBLE AXEL. ANOTHER STEP OUT THERE. WHEN YOU’RE THINKING 2:30, EIGHT REQUIREMENT ELEMENTS, TWO MANDATORY DEDUCTIONS ALREADY. THE DOUBLE TOE LOOP’S NOT GOING TO HELP HER OUT AT ALL. IT’S ONLY TWO AND A HALF MINUTES, BUT IT FEELS LIKE IT’S A NIGHTMARE COVERED IN MOLASSES. THIS IS NOT WHAT YOU WANT YOUR OLYMPICS TO BE.>>1995 UNITED STATES NATIONAL CHAMPION, STRUGGLED WITH INJURIES FOR A COUPLE OF YEARS, CAME BACK LAST YEAR TO WIN A BRONZE MEDAL AND GO TO THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS. HER MOM JANNA IMMIGRATED FROM CZECHOSLOVAKIA. THAT WAS BACK IN THE 1970’S.>>HER COACH CHRISTA FASSI, SHE HAD DEVASTATION LAST YEAR AT THE CHAMPIONSHIPS, HER HUSBAND PASSED AWAY DURING THE COMPETITION, CARLO FASSI. FOR NICOLE, THIS IS JUST A NIGHTMARE. YOU HATE TO SEE THIS. SHE’S AN INCREDIBLE PERFORMER. WHEN SHE’S ON, SHE LIGHTS UP THE BUILDING LIKE NOBODY ELSE. SO EX-TREE VERDICT. SHE HAS A PERSONALITY. BUT THIS IS TOUGH.>>THE COMBINATION, A LITTLE LOOSE THERE ON THE TAKEOFF. YOU CAN SEE SHE’S UP STRAIGHT IN THE AIR, BUT JUST DOESN’T GET AROUND. BLADE DOES NOT LIKE GOING SIDEWAYS IN LANDINGS ON JUMPS. JUST HATES IT. THIS IS KIND OF A SILLY ERROR. DOUBLE AXEL IS AN EASY JUMP FOR THIS LEVEL OF SKATER. THE HIP’S OPEN THERE, CAN’T HOLD ON TO THE LANDING. MOM WATCHING, OH, SHE KNOWS HOW TOUGH THIS IS. BRUTAL.>>TARA LIPINSKI LOOKS ON, TODD ELDREDGE AS WELL.>>TALK OF AN AMERICAN SWEEP HAS BEEN PRETTY PREVALENT HERE, BUT YOU’VE GOT TO SKATE. SHE HAD A GREAT DRAW, NEXT TO LAST IN THE GROUP. SHE THOUGHT IT WAS ALL TEED UP, BUT YOU’VE GOT TO BE ABLE TO LAND THE JUMPS. YOU CAN SEE JUST THE DISAPPOINTMENT. IT’S SO HARD. YOU WANT TO TURN IN YOUR BEST STUFF AT THE BIGGEST, MOST IMPORTANT TIMES IN YOUR CAREER, AND THIS WAS ONE OF THOSE FOR NICOLE. SO DIFFICULT TO WAIT.>>WHAT HAD BEEN A LONG NIGHT NOW BECOMES UNENDING.>>TONIGHT AT WHITE RING, A NIGHT OF BIG SMILES. AND BIGGER SMILES. IT WAS A NIGHT WITH TEARS OF JOY. AND TEARS OF SADNESS.>>IN THE DRAW ROOM, MICHELLE KWAN DREW THE FIRST POSITION IN THE LAST GROUP.>>SHE COMES RIGHT OFF WARM-UP, A VERY GOOD DRAW. IT WORKED IN THE SHORT.>>TARA LIPINSKI OF THE UNITED STATES WILL SKATE NEXT TO LAST.>>WHAT’S IMPORTANT ABOUT THE DRAW IS WHO YOU SKATE AFTER OR WHAT YOU SKATE AFTER. MICHELLE KWAN SKATES RIGHT AFTER THE WARM-UP, GREAT DRAW FOR HER. TARA LIPINSKI SKATES RIGHT AFTER SURYA BONALY. MARIA BUTIRSKAYA SKATES LAST. THE MEDALS WON’T BE DECIDED UNTIL MARIA HEARS THE LAST NOTE OF HER MUSIC.>>THE LADIES’ FREE SKATE FROM WHITE RING FRIDAY NIGHT.

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