By Shannon Jahrling and Rebecca Wales of the Lexettes
A lot of hard work led up to this amazing weekend. As soon as we started our training boot camp in August, we started counting down the days until Junior World Team Selection. We tried to make every practice count and focus on the ways that we could improve our skating as a team and individuals. As JWQ got closer, we worked on details and consistency for each individual element and strong presentation for each of our programs.
When we arrived in Wisconsin, we could feel the amazing energy of the competition and were excited to get on the ice for our last practices before our competition skates. Our unofficial practices went very well on Thursday, and we were confident that we could score well in both programs if we skated just how we had been practicing. We then headed back to the hotel and got some rest before the short program competition day.
The next morning we slept in a little bit and did some program off-ice and stretching to keep the short program fresh in our minds. Our short program official practice went well and we were all very excited to show off our hard work in the competition. To prepare us mentally we had a short team meeting to talk about our goals and focuses’ for the short program. We were all pleased with our short program skate that evening, but we knew that we were competing against other very talented teams, and we needed to stay focused and transition to thinking about the long program in order to accomplish our goals
Though we skated a very successful short program, we knew our work wasn’t done and that everyone would be stepping up their game for the free skate program the next night. After getting some sleep, we woke up early on Saturday morning and skated a very good run-through at our official practice, making us all very proud and allowing us to realize that we have it in us to skate like that at the competition. Filled with adrenaline as we took the ice that night, we knew that we would be successful if we skated exactly how we’ve been practicing- calmly, passionately, and extremely focused. After skating just like that, we were all extremely proud- even before hearing the score, because we knew we skated with our hearts.
After a great competition in Fond du Lac, there is no time for a break! We are now beginning our countdowns to French Cup, Nationals, and now the Junior World Challenge Cup, which means we have to work even harder on each element, focus on each extension, and skate with our hearts like we have been. Go USA!