Figure skater Kwan dismisses longtime coach
Less than four months before the Salt Lake City Olympics, Michelle Kwan is taking the biggest gamble of her career. Kwan, the reigning world champion and a favorite to win gold in Salt Lake, announced Tuesday that she's split with longtime coach Frank Carroll. She plans to coach herself for now, though she didn't rule out working with someone in the future. Kwan, 21, of Torrance (Los Angeles County), had been coached by Carroll since 1992. titles and four world championships. However, it was her silver-medal performance at the 1998 Winter Olympics that kept her in amateur competition, still searching for gold.
For the next four months, at least, Kwan will act as her own coach, with rink-side guidance from her http://www.hermesbrikinuk.com Hermes UK father, Danny.
That was the scene yesterday in Colorado Springs, Colo., where Kwan began her practice for this week's Skate America event with her father seated at the sideboards, a spot where Kwan's longtime coach normally would be.
According to , Danny Kwan barely spoke to his daughter and didn't appear to be doing any coaching. Michelle Kwan fell four times during the workout, including twice while attempting a triple-triple combination. But she did hit the triple toe loop-triple toe loop combination later in the session.
Veteran figure skating observers could not recall a skater of this caliber firing http://hermesbrikinuk.com her coach so close to an Olympic Games.
"It may be earth-breaking news, but for me, at this moment, it is the right decision," Kwan said earlier in a conference call. "When I was younger, the coach was pretty much the skater. You did whatever he said. As I've gotten older and grown more independent, I think for myself, and that's how it should be."
While elegant and technically accomplished on the ice, Kwan seemed to lack pizzazz in her recent performances and was hesitant to try triple-triple combination jumps that other elite skaters manage to land.
In an uninspired performance, Kwan finished second to her main rival, of Russia, at last month's Goodwill Games.
"Right now, I feel as a skater I've evolved and have different philosophies and how to get to where I want to be," Kwan said. hermesbrikinuk.com "It's not saying Frank is wrong and I'm right, just that we have our differences."
When Kwan skated off the ice yesterday, the few people in the World Arena were busy discussing the strange timing of her decision, with the Olympics less than four months away.
"On the other side of the coin, it disturbs me that championship skaters can now do without coaches. It makes my future in doubt."
Kwan also has replaced her longtime choreographer, , with in an attempt to bolster her long program.
Carroll, who said he was shocked at Kwan's decision to leave him, said he hopes the move does not jeopardize her chances of winning the gold medal in February..(babyandyUSA-June-01) 2013-06-21.