The 2021 U.S. Figure Skating Championship Series presented by Toyota, is a series of eight competitions that will take place over a four-week period beginning Nov. 9, 2020. The Championship Series has been created to replace the traditional U.S. Qualifying Season competitions (Challenges and Finals) for the 2020-21 figure skating season due to the impact of COVID-19. The Championship Series format, which has been approved by the U.S. Figure Skating Board of Directors, was conceived as a result of athlete, coach, and parent/guardian or chaperone feedback, as well as input from the U.S. Figure Skating Competitions Committee and discipline skating committees.
The delayed start of the U.S. Qualifying Season, originally scheduled to begin on Sept. 29, will allow athletes the necessary time to train so they are ready to compete with proper preparation. As it has done throughout the planning process for the Championship Series, U.S. Figure Skating will continue to assess the viability of this plan based on state and local regulations to ensure the health and well-being for all participants.
Explanation of the Series
The 2021 U.S. Figure Skating Championship Series presented by Toyota is scheduled to take place from Nov. 10 – Dec. 6 in eight geographically diverse locations permitting athletes to compete at up to two competitions in the location of their choice. Similar to the U.S. Figure Skating National Qualifying Series (NQS), results from Championship Series events will be uploaded to U.S. Figure Skating’s Event Management System (EMS) following each event and sectional and national rankings will be available for participants. Advancement to the 2021 Toyota U.S. Figure Skating Championships, and assignment to the 2021 National High Performance Development Team, will be based on each skaters’ highest score earned rather than placement at each competition. The participant handbook can be found at www.usfigureskatingchampionshipseries.com.
Athletes will be allowed to enter a maximum of two of the eight competitions being offered. The EMS-based registration process will open at www.usfsaonline.org on Monday, Aug. 17, 2020 at 4:00 p.m. ET. Registration will be a three-step process as outlined below:
Step 1 – All athletes intending to compete must register for the 2021 U.S. Figure Skating Championship Series between Aug. 17 and Sept. 25, 2020.
Step 2 – Championship Series registered participants will then select any competition from the list below between Aug. 17 and Sept. 1, 2020, with acceptance based upon space availability. Please note, due to facility and scheduling limitations, U.S. Figure Skating will enforce a maximum number of entries for each event.
Step 3 – After the close of the first phase of event selection by registered participants, and an assessment of event availability, Championship Series athletes will have the opportunity to register for a second competition (or first if an event was not selected during the Step 2 window) between Sept. 7 and Sept. 25, 2020. Registration during step three will again be based on space availability.
Note: Athletes are strongly encouraged to register during the first phase (Step 2) to ensure that they have the best chance to compete at the location of their choice.
Confirmed Competitions (subject to change)
Blaine, Minn. | Nov. 9-13, 2020 | Singles
Norwood, Mass. | Nov. 10-15, 2020 | Singles, Pairs
Spokane, Wash. | Nov. 11-14, 2020 | Singles
Alpharetta, Ga. | Nov. 17-20, 2020 | Singles
Fort Wayne, Ind. | Nov. 17-20, 2020 | Singles, Ice Dance
Henderson, Nev. | Nov. 24-28, 2020 | Singles, Pairs
Leesburg, Va. | Dec. 1-6, 2020 | Singles, Ice Dance
Frisco, Texas | Dec. 1-6, 2020 | Singles
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Frequently Asked Questions
What is the health and safety plan for these eight competitions?
U.S. Figure Skating is working with each Local Organizing Club (LOC) and facility partner on the development and implementation of a public health and safety plan in accordance with state and local regulations, including, but not limited to, participant requirements (testing, temperature checks, health questionnaires), building/event flow and emergency action plans. Details for all attendees will be advanced via email and pre-competition Zoom calls.
What is the benefit of holding eight competitions compared to the traditional Challenge and Finals format?
The decision to reimagine the U.S. Qualifying Season for this year only is based on the survey results from athletes, coaches and parents. Shifting events to November and December allows athletes more time to train and properly prepare to compete. Additionally, it was important to recognize that many athletes are not training in their traditional rinks, so these eight competitions are located in strategic locations with an emphasis on providing the option for most athletes to drive to a location that is nearest to them.
Can I truly compete anywhere in the country?
Yes! The goal is to provide athletes with maximum flexibility to compete and qualify for the U.S. Championships and/or the National High Performance Development Camp.
Does this mean Challenges and Finals are cancelled?
Due to the impact of COVID-19, the Championship Series has been created to replace the traditional U.S. qualifying competitions (Challenges and Finals) for the 2020-21 U.S. Figure Skating Qualifying Season to provide the best opportunity for all athletes to train and be ready to compete in November/December.
My rink just recently reopened and I can’t test prior to the registration dates listed. What should I do?
U.S. Figure Skating has approved Technical Notification 250 that allows athletes to register at their current test level or up to two levels higher. Rule 2424 will still apply.
How will athletes advance to the U.S. Championships?
Advancement to the 2021 Toyota U.S. Figure Skating Championships and naming of the National High Performance Development Team will be processed and made available to the public the week of Dec. 7.