Gold looks to new coaches, Olympics

CaptionCloseNew YorkHer season prematurely over, Gracie Gold is looking forward.That's probably a wise decision considering her struggles at the U.S. championships and her split with renowned coach Frank Carroll.This isn't the best year to be taking backward...

Gold looks to new coaches, Olympics

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Her season prematurely over, Gracie Gold is looking forward.

That's probably a wise decision considering her struggles at the U.S. championships and her split with renowned coach Frank Carroll.

This isn't the best year to be taking backward steps in figure skating, what with the Olympics in South Korea 12 months away. Putting out your best, particularly for international judges, can be a key for Olympic success. Next month's world championship is the final one before the Pyeongchang Games, and Gold won't be there.

Instead, she'll be settling in with new coaches Marina Zoueva and Oleg Epstein in Canton, Mich., at a facility where Canadian star and three-time world champion Patrick Chan trains. Carroll, who guided Evan Lysacek to 2010 Olympic gold and also worked for years with Michelle Kwan, announced at nationals last month that he was no longer going to work with Gold.

"I will be taking coaching with Marina and Oleg," Gold said this week while appearing at a U.S. Olympic Committee function in New York. "I've taken two or three training days with them just to make sure that is what I wanted and it definitely is. I love the environment there, skating with Patrick and (American dance champions Maia and Alex Shibutani). It is a really great group.

"Everyone I have talked to about it there has really supported my decision and they think it is a positive environment. It is really the head space and the positive energy I need to be around."

Everything sure seemed positive for Gold in 2014, when she won the first of her two U.S. titles, then helped the Americans finish third in the Sochi Olympics team event. She came in fourth in the women's individual competition.

But since leading after the short program at last year's worlds, then falling to fourth, Gold has been on a downward spiral that hit its low point when she finished sixth in Kansas City in January.

Now she needs a new start and is playing catch-up to veteran Ashley Wagner and rising star Karen Chen, the 2017 U.S. champion.

But Gold is a determined athlete, and even with such a short period between the coaching change and Pyeongchang, she's confident she can challenge for a spot on the U.S. squad.

Our editors found this article on this site using Google and regenerated it for our readers.

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