10:04 AM CDT, September 21, 2011
Looks like there is a chance Brandon Mroz will enter skating's record books as the first person to land a quadruple lutz jump in competition.
I spoke Wednesday morning with Peter Krick, chair of the International Skating Union's sports directorate, and Krick told me the ISU would consider the situation once it had full details from U.S. Figure Skating about Mroz' accomplishment in Friday's short program at the Colorado Springs Invitational.
Krick said that would include: a written report from the event referee describing the competition, which had three men's entrants; a statement from the judging panel controller of having witnessed the jump and certifying it had sufficient revolutions and a clean landing; and video evidence.
(For the video, click here.)
"When we have that, we will decide if the nature of the event is sufficient for this jump to go into history as the first,'' said Krick, a longtime ISU official from Germany who finished 12th in singles at the 1968 Olympics.
USFS chief executive David Raith had contacted Krick to see if there were a chance for official recognition of Mroz' jump.
USFS officials originally had thought the jump could not be recognized because it did not occur in a national championship, qualifying event for nationals or international competition.
There has been official recognition for quadruples on two of the six types of jumps skaters perform.
According to the USFS media guide, Canada's Kurt Browning is credited with the first quad, a toe loop, at the 1988 world championships. U.S. skater Timothy Goebel landed the first quad salchow at the 1998 Junior Grand Prix Final.
For Mroz, 20, of St. Louis, the attention-getting jump kicked off what he hopes will be a comeback season.
After a surprising second place finish at the 2009 U.S. Championships, his first at the senior level, Mroz fell to sixth in 2010 and seventh last season.
Mroz' coach, Tom Zakrajsek, said by telephone Wednesday the skater also has been landing quad flip and quad loop in practice, and the plan is for Mroz to try one or all of them in his two Grand Prix events this fall - the NHK Trophy in Japan and the Rostelcom Cup in Moscow.
Zakrajsek was speaking from Germany, where he had watched Michal Brezina of the Czech Republic land four types of quads -- toe, salchow, loop, lutz -- in practices for this week's Nebelhorn Trophy competition.
"When I saw Brezina doing that in Moscow (at the 2011 worlds), I talked with Brandon about having him push the envelope and make some history, too,'' Zakrajsek said.
Brezina was credited with a quad toe and a quad salchow in the free skate at last year's worlds, where he fell on two other jumps while finishing fourth.
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