The 2009 ISU World Figure Skating Championships®, hosted by U.S. Figure Skating in partnership with AEG, gets underway at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles March 22 - 29, 2009. Representing more than 50 countries, 200+ skaters will vie for the coveted title of World champion in ladies, men's, pairs and ice dancing. Who stands atop the medal podium is crucial in determining the number of skaters each country can send to the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver, Canada, so the athletes will be holding nothing back in this year's exalted international championship.
THE INSIDE EDGE
- With the exception of the Olympic title, a World title is considered to be the highest honor in figure skating.
- 2009 marks the 99th World Championship and the first time the event will be held in Los Angeles. (Established in 1896).
- Record-breaking attempt possible with a quad (four revolution jump) in the ladies division (Miki Ando of Japan).
- Unlucky #13 is the magical number for the 2010 Olympic Winter Games: Based on the outcome of medal finishes and final placements, the number of skaters a country can send to the next Olympic Games will be determined at the close of this Championship. (If final placements add up to 13 or less, then three skaters can be sent to compete in that division. Example: A silver medal (2); a forth place finish (4) and a seventh place finish (7) = 13).
- The last time the event took place in California was Oakland's 1992 World Figure Skating Championships sixteen years ago.
- The men's division is wide open with the retirement of 2008 World champion Jeffrey Buttle of Canada.
- U.S. hopefuls who train in the Los Angeles area include: Evan Lysacek, Mirai Nagasu, Bebe Liang and the pairs team of Rena Inoue and John Baldwin. Former Angeleno greats include: Peggy Fleming, Tai Babilonia & Randy Gardner, Michelle Kwan and Sasha Cohen.
STAPLES Center, an AEG property located at 1111 South Figueroa Street in Los Angeles, is one of the world's best-known sports and entertainment venues and home to the Los Angeles Lakers, Los Angeles Clippers, Los Angeles Kings, Los Angeles Avengers and Los Angeles Sparks. Easily accessible by car just off the 110 Freeway at Olympic Blvd., and public transportation with the Metro Bus line or the Metro Rail Blue Line at the Pico Station stop. Info at www.staplescenter.com.
Available for purchase by calling 1-888-SKATE09 or online at www.isuworlds2009.com or www.ticketmaster.com.
- All-event packages start at $235 (include exclusive practice session access).
- Special Weekend Packages available starting at $105.
- Individual tickets ($20 and up) are available for purchase as of January, 2009.
- Group discounts apply to parties of 10 or more.
- Parking passes available for purchase in advance.
U.S. Figure Skating: The official governing body for the sport of figure skating in the United States, recognized as such by both the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) and the International Skating Union (ISU), it is comprised of 1,425 member clubs and programs representing nearly 184,000 members. Its mission is to provide programs to encourage participation and achievement in the sport of figure skating. Info at www.usfigureskating.org.
International Skating Union (ISU): Was founded in 1892 and is the oldest governing international winter sport federation. Since its establishment, ice skating disciplines have developed steadily over time to occupy the significant role they now enjoy in the world of sport.