Boardwalk Blog (#5)

By Michelle Wojdyla, Special to U.S. Figure Skating Online
Emily Hughes and coach Bonni Retzkin in Friday practice
Photo by Michelle Wojdyla

2006 Smart Ones Skate America Results, News and Photos

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(10/21/05) - At 2 a.m. this morning I put in my wakeup call for 7 a.m. to watch practice. At 7:01 a.m. I put in another wakeup call for 10 a.m. The Sheraton's “Sweet Sleeper Bed” is amazing. I now totally get what my cat sees in a pile of fleece. Good beds cannot be praised enough.

I made it to the arena in time for ladies practice. Alissa's here! Alissa's here! Czisny ran through her program, looking strong and confident. The ovation from the crowd was impressive. Her flexibility is impossible.

Dan Fang from China also had a strong session, flying around and looking very ready to compete. Emily Hughes always seems to enjoy her time on the ice. She and coach Bonni Retzkin laugh a lot. Bebe Liang hit the boards on a combo jump close to where her coaches (FrankEnKen!) were standing. No apparent harm to Bebe or the board covering. Elena Sokolova did her minimal run-through and left early. (superficial alert) Her hair is very shiny. Germany's Constanze Paulinus and Canada's Mira Leung were the last to leave the practice session.

I sat next to a woman who does a lot of traveling to see skating. We compared notes on rinks around the world. She commented that it's nice to see Peter Tchernyshev here as a coach. I countered that it's nice to see Peter Tchernyshev anywhere.

While the men were warming up, Audrey Weisiger was standing off-ice. According to Timothy Goebel last night in the mixed zone, Audrey had to return home to Virginia for medical reasons. Good to see her back in Atlantic City.