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Saturday, Feb. 4, 2006

Responses, Part 1
What do you think about the ISU's decision to award Salé and Pelletier gold medals on Friday? Will this help figure skating's image?

Here are responses to the above question:

Way wrong decision based on an unproven assumptions and continuous Canadian team's whining. Even when you dismiss a French judge scores -- Russian team scores are still higher and they have won a short program too. Scores are not decided by popular voting or litigation. You better watch out for the mutual distrust and animosity that comes out of it. Media spinning and propaganda -- that's all about it.

Jamie and David finally have golden medals to match their golden hearts! They skated beautifully, and in the maelstrom of the aftermath, they conducted themselves in a manner fitting true champions, never once casting so much as a word of negativity towards their competitors. Sadly that cannot be said in reverse. One can only hope this will be the beginning of a process necessary to correct the corrupt judging that has dominated this sport for too long!
Francine Wong

This decision simply shows the level of desperation that the ISU has reached.
Guillaume Ouellette-Berruel

The French judge should be charged with taking bribes and thrown in jail for the rest of her natural life

If the French judge was being pressured by other judges, why are those other judges not being named and suspended? This is probably a no-brainer, but the whistle blower is not alone at fault.
Anonda Berg

CONGRATULATIONS! Justice has been served. Hurrah!

Figure skating's image is helped by this decision, but not cured. That can only be achieved by finding someway to ensure each and every judge is obliged to be honest and independent in their judgment.
V. Traynor

While I'm happy that Sale and Pelletier were awarded the gold, that was not the point. The point is corruption and unethical behavior and what the ISU and the IOC will do about it. Changing a medal does not address fixing the underlying problem.
Petra Warrior

Finally! What a circus it has been for finally arriving to the most obvious situation that should have been after the Canadians had skated! It is really too bad that the medals are so tainted by such scandal, but at least justice was made to the athletes. I sure hope that the judging system will be cleaned up in that sport. It is a sport that I have always enjoyed watching in the past, and I had sort of refrain from doing so in the past couple of years, because of that very rumour that final decisions being reached way before the skaters had hit the ice. I really wish that the ISU clean what needs to be clean, for me to fully appreciate watching that sport again. Way to go, Jamie and David! Vous êtes les meilleurs!!!

I think the Russians should be stripped of the medal they won. I hope Salé and Pelletier are happy with the decision. It's not the same now as winning it in front of all the world.
B. Bonnar

Excellent! It will not help the ISU's image. They have now simply admitted they have major ethical problems that must be addressed immediately to try and repair the damage to their credibility as a fair and just organization. This will take many years of scandal free meets.
Pat Tadier

I think it took them to long to decide that they are gold medal champions . Its really giving the Olympics a bad reputation ,four years ago with dance now with pairs .These athletes work hard for this sport and should have a fair chance, also if judges have been accused of something should never be allowed to judge again. A skating fan, Bernice Lemoine

I think there has been a grave error made. My thought would be to have a rematch of first and second place with new judges being put in place. As it stands there will always be a doubt cast to the figures skate that was had.
Lothar Thiem

I am very pleased that this has been resolved quickly and believe this is the correct course of action. IOC is plagued with scandal and I am hopeful that some form of advocacy is implemented to safeguard against this in future. Youths aspiring to participate in competitive events as such need to be assured that they are ranked against their peers in the fairest manner without reproach and applies not only to skating, but to all events.
Homer J.S.

No it will not help their image. It's not the first time there has been the allegation of this type. Insiders are stating that this type of prejudging is part of the sport. If it is then it can hardly be justified as saying this is a competitive sport and should not be in the Olympics its time to take this "sport" out of the Olympics, until they can show that the judging can be done without bias, prejudice, collusion or undue influence. The onus should be on them to show it, and until then the "sport" should be taken out of the Olympics

Considering the wonderful performance Salé and Pelletier gave, this is a compromise that all can appreciate, I would hope. The Russian pair wasn't at fault, they deserve to keep their medals, and the skating world acknowledges that subjective judging mistakes can be remedied by common sense intervention. I don't know if this decision can wipe out all the questionable decisions of the past, but the action at least cleanses a beautiful performance from the ugly aftertaste it left with most of us who saw the competition. One question remains: Why only reprimand the French judge? Weren't there others involved who did the 'pressuring'?
Tom Thorisch
Tulsa, Oklahoma

I think it is great that they have been awarded a gold. But, I do not think that the awarding of the gold to them will help figure skating's image. To improve their image they need to do more. The suspension of the French judge is not enough. Do judges that are implicated in issues like this really make good judges after their suspension is over? I think they need to implement more rules and to reward the individuals who make public situations like this. In most instances the individual who does wrong receives only a slap on the wrist and the one who does right, letting the public know, is the one who suffers the most punishment.
Denise Goodchild

I believe they deserved the gold as much as anyone. Will the problems that have been plaguing figure skating be solved as a result of the ISU's decision? Will it help figure skating's image? I believe the answer is a resounding NO. The ISU is doing nothing for the sport of figure skating by politically white washing the issue and placing the blame on one corrupt judge. I don't of course speak for all Canadians but as a patriotic Canadian... they can keep their gold medal. It obviously doesn't mean anything.
Chris Patheiger

I honestly think that they deserve the gold. They were flawless. Jamie and David were awsome! The Russians were awesome too, they made a couple of minor mistakes, but they had lots of speed and flow. I'm glad they both get their medals. They both deserve gold because if would have been vice versa, people world be mad at the Canadians and say how they made a mistake. I'm glad they get their gold now because now Russians can breath. Both teams have worked hard and that's what matters.

I think the ISU hopes that this will solve their problems, and make the critics go away. Unfortunately, the systemic problems with figure skating have to be addressed and solved before the credibility of the event is restored. One of the problems in this is the packaged "competitions" presented to North American audiences for entertainment. Figure skating must realize that it is first and foremost an athletic competition, and that not only must technical merit be the tiebreaker in judging, it must be the dominant factor. Leave the aesthetics to the audience to decide.
Lindsay Hughes
 All responses   Part 2 

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