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Kitsell on the Road to Her "Dreams" at State Farm U.S. Championshipsby Amy Partain
Photo by Paul Harvath
(1/9/05) — In early 2004 it would have been hard for Kaysi Kitsell (SC of New York) to imagine competing at the 2005 State Farm U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Portland, Ore. She was suffering from a blood clot in her ankle and kept off the ice.
But by July it was better, and that same month she moved to Hackensack, N.J., to train with Robin Wagner. On Sunday she finished first in the novice ladies short program at the U.S. Championships, in a good position to medal. Kitsell skated to “Dreams” in the short program and completed a triple toe-double toe, fought for the landing on her double Axel and executed nicely positioned spins.
“I really like to get through the triple toe-double toe,” she said. “And the spiral sequence is really fun.”
After the short program, Kitsell said she planned to see a movie because it takes her mind off skating. Her movie of choice?
“Spanglish!” she laughed.
Rachael Flatt (Broadmoor SC) brought a little “Summertime” to Portland with her short program that earned her second place. She seemed to be feeling the music as she completed her required elements with a triple toe-double toe combination, double Axel and double loop.
“I loved it all,” she said of her program. “I had a lot of fun out there. After the triple toe I was like, ‘OK, I've got the hardest thing done.'”
Kirsten Olson (FSC of Bloomington) couldn't be happier with her third-place finish in the short program in her first trip to U.S. Championships. She had a slight bobble on the landing of her double Axel but otherwise completed the program without errors. The program included a double loop with a variation of arm position and fast spins.
“I'm really excited to be here for the first time,” Olson said. “The crowd was pretty energizing.”
The novice ladies will finish their competition with the free skate Monday night.