Novice Pairs Provide Clean Start to 2005 State Farm U.S. Championshipsby Amy Partain
(1/9/05) - Clean best describes the novice pairs event at the 2005 State Farm U.S. Figure Skating Championships. All 12 pairs skated short programs on Sunday without major errors.
In their first trip to the U.S. Championships, Claire Davis (Colorado SC) and Nathan Miller (Broadmoor SC) are in first place, thanks to well-executed elements including their double twist and side-by-side double loops in their program to "Moonlight Sonata."
Davis said they are excited to be in first place going into the free skate, and admitted that the first event can be a little intimidating. While they have experience competing at the U.S. Junior Championships, Miller said that experience was like a baby step.
"I get goose bumps every time I walk the halls," he said. "I'm so excited and the adrenaline is pumping. It's awesome."
Sitting in second place after the short program are Molly Aaron (Coyotes SC of Arizona) and Taylor Toth (Pittsburgh FSC), who have both been to the U.S. Championships before but with other partners.
They were pleased with their solid program skated to "Tico, Tico," which had a lot of speed. Toth said they accomplished their goal of skating with determination.
"This event can be nerve wracking at first," he said. "But this is a really fun program and that helped take the edge off. We're both outgoing so it suits us well."
Lisa Moore (ISC of Fort Collins) and Nicholas Girardi (ISC of Fort Collins) are in third. Skating to music from "Cinderella" Moore and Girardi said they were relaxed, which helped them perform so well.
Their short program was originally an ice show number that received so many positive comments their coach Heidi Thibert decided to turn it into a short program.
While they were pleased with their performance, Girardi said there are always things that can be done better.
"There's always room for improvement," he said. "You can always skate faster or have better extensions."