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Chicago to host 2014 Skate America Chicago will host 2014 Hilton HHonors Skate America this fall,


U.S. Figure Skating announced last month. The International Skating Union’s (ISU) kickoff event to the 20th


annual Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series will take place at the Sears Centre in nearby Hoffman Estates, Ill., Oct. 23–26. The competition will mark the first time since the 1946 U.S.


Championships that the Greater Chicago area has hosted a major figure skating event. “The Greater Chicago area is home to many of our clubs and has


an extensive skating fan base,” U.S. Figure Skating Executive Director David Raith said. “We are excited to bring our primary international event to this skating-rich area.” The Sears Centre hosted the 2014 Midwestern and Pacific Coast


Synchronized Sectional Championships, as well as the 2013 Big Ten Women’s Basketball Championships. The Hilton Rosemont is the host hotel. For more information, go


to www.2014skateamerica.com. A complete roster of competitors will be announced in late


June.


Lipinski, Weir take airways by storm What do 1998 Olympic champion Tara Lipinski and three-time


U.S. champion Johnny Weir have in common? Besides their obvi- ous talent on the ice and their ability to coordinate accessories to outfits, the skating greats have also developed a flair for commen- tary.


Joining forces in the broadcast booth for NBC, the dynamic


duo has taken the fashion and figure skating worlds by storm, inspiring articles such as “Why Tara Lipinski and Johnny Weir Are The Greatest Commentary Duo Ever” on the popular website Buzzfeed.com. The knowledge, wit and charm Lipinski and Weir displayed during the 2014 U.S. Championships in Boston, followed by equally insightful performances throughout the 2014 Olym- pic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia, earned the two national rec- ognition for both their talent and their (sometimes matching) high-fashion ensembles. Riding their wave of post-Games popularity, Lipinski and


Weir enjoyed a job providing fashion commentary for Access Hollywood during the 86th annual Academy Awards, in addition to appearances on the “Today” show and “Late Night with Seth Meyers.” “This whole wild ride was truly amazing,” the duo tweeted


from their joint account, @TaraandJohnny, after the Closing Cer- emony. “Ur support & kind words made us so happy! Onward & upward for #taraandjohnny”


— Mimi Whetstone


Lexettes, Jazz compete at Junior World Challenge Cup in Switzerland The Lexettes (Hayden Recreation Centre FSC) and Chicago Jazz


(Chicago FSC) finished seventh and 10th, respectively, at the 2014 Ju- nior World Challenge Cup, held March 6–8 in Neuchâtel, Switzerland. The two teams earned the right to compete after finishing first


and second at the 2014 World Junior Team Selection Event in Janu- ary. This was the second consecutive year the Lexettes qualified for the Junior World Challenge Cup. Chicago Jazz returned for its ninth appearance, having last competed in 2009. The team earned bronze medals at this event in 2006 and 2007. The Lexettes, who won their first junior title at the 2014 U.S. Syn-


chronized Skating Championships in early March, were in seventh place following the short program. The team received 89.67 points for its free skate to a Shirley Bassey medley and finished the competi- tion with 133.85 points overall. Chicago Jazz, pewter medalists at the U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships, finished 10th, with 117.75 points. Finland’s Team Fintastic won the gold medal with 173.77 points.


Having won the silver medal last year, as well as seven of the last eight world junior synchronized skating events, the Finnish team was one of 19 teams competing. In third place following the short program, Les Suprêmes of Cana-


da performed a clean free skate, which moved them into second place overall with 170.89 points. The Musketeers, also of Finland, secured the bronze medal with 167.63 points.


— Leslie Graham


6 APRIL 2014


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