U.S. championships start this weekend in Omaha
Official practice for 2013 Prudential U.S. Figure Skating Championships begins Saturday, Jan. 19
|Ashley Wagner looks to defend her U.S. ladies title in Omaha, Neb. (Getty Images)|
More than 370 figure skaters will compete at the juvenile, intermediate, novice, junior and senior levels for 20 U.S. titles in ladies, men's, pairs and ice dancing. Several members of the 2012 U.S. world team are set to compete, including reigning U.S. champions Ashley Wagner (ladies), Jeremy Abbott (men's), and Meryl Davis and Charlie White (ice dancing). Caydee Denney and John Coughlin, the 2012 U.S. pairs champions, will not compete in Omaha due to injury.
Official practice begins Saturday, Jan. 19, for all four novice disciplines and junior ladies and men's. Competition starts Sunday, Jan. 20, at 9:50 a.m. (CST) with the novice pattern dance.
Icenetwork.com will provide live and on-demand coverage to Season Pass subscribers. The icenetwork.com team, led by Mike Mancuso (play-by-play), features former Olympic, world and U.S. medalists. Returning to the broadcast booth are Tonia Kwiatkowski, a three-time U.S. medalist; Sarah Hughes, the 2002 Olympic champion; and Tanith Belbin, a five-time U.S. ice dancing champion with Ben Agosto. Joining the icenetwork.com broadcast for the first time are two-time world bronze medalist Michael Weiss and 2011 U.S. champion Ryan Bradley. Mancuso, Kwiatkowski, Belbin and Weiss will provide event commentary.
In addition to subscription video, icenetwork.com will offer extensive free coverage of the U.S. championships, including video, live results, event recaps, blogs and photo galleries. Free video content will include interviews, press conferences, live technical analysis and coverage of practice sessions. Weiss, Belbin, Hughes and Bradley will host "AT&T Ice Desk Live" throughout the senior events, offering their insight and analysis on the competition, as well as conduct behind-the-scenes interviews.
NBC will provide eight hours of live, high-definition coverage of senior-level events, including three hours in primetime. In total, NBC will air 10 hours of skating, including the two-hour Smucker's Skating Spectacular, airing from 1-3 p.m. (EST) on Saturday, Feb. 2. The U.S. championships will be carried in more than 127 countries and be available to nearly 300 million homes worldwide.
NBC's broadcast team of Mike "Doc" Emrick and Steve Schlanger (play-by-play), Scott Hamilton (analyst), Sandra Bezic (analyst), Tracy Wilson (analyst) and Andrea Joyce (reporter) will call the action in Omaha.
Icenetwork.com will provide a unique second-screen experience for fans throughout NBC's live coverage of the championships Saturday and Sunday.