Wednesday, April 23, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Castelli, Shnapir lead after pairs short program

BOSTON — Marissa Castelli and Simon Shnapir found out the U.S. championships in an Olympic year would be held in their hometown of Boston and thought, “Oh, no.”

All that pressure, all those hopes from the friends and family who would watch them try to qualify for the Sochi Games.

But when they took the ice Thursday for the pairs short program, the two New Englanders soared on that support. The defending champs staked themselves to a huge lead of 6.63 points.

“We do little exhibitions at our home club, Skating Club of Boston, and those are some of the most nerve-racking performances for us,” Shnapir said. “There’s almost this feeling of expectation that we have to do well. It’s definitely challenging. But as soon as we hit our spot, as soon as we heard our names called, we felt that energy.”

Castelli’s jaw dropped when their mark of 73.13 points was announced.

“I was in shock at first; I was not expecting that,” she said. “I like to try to calculate it in my head. I would have been happy with 66 or 67, so it was just insane.”

The crowd was screaming for them from the moment they took the ice to warm up for their performance, the last of the afternoon.

The roars swelled as they skated to “Black Magic Woman” and “Smooth” by Carlos Santana. Their speed on the ice and the height of their jumps were on another level from the rest of the competition, and when Castelli smoothly landed a big throw triple salchow, Shnapir might have thought from the reaction that his beloved Bruins had just scored a goal at TD Garden.

“Props to the crowd — that was more than we could have asked for,” Shnapir said. “The energy in the house was enormous and it really helped us. It was kind of humbling to know how many people are supporting us and were cheering us on.”

The real competition during Saturday’s free skate could be for the United States’ second Olympic spot. Felicia Zhang and Nathan Bartholomay lead third-place DeeDee Leng and Timothy LeDuc by 0.1 points.

Caydee Denney and John Coughlin, the 2012 champs, returned after missing last year’s nationals as he recovered from hip surgery. But she did a double toeloop instead of a planned triple on their side-by-side jumps, and her hand touched on her throw triple flip. The mistakes left them in fourth, a point behind Leng and LeDuc.

Castelli and Shnapir held an even bigger lead after last year’s short program, up nine points on Zhang and Bartholomay. But this was a far more impressive performance than the one that earned them 62.27 points in 2013.

Their personal best coming in was 62.56, and they finished 13th at the world championships, as American pairs have struggled to keep up at major international events.

Maybe they can make some noise in Sochi after the 73.13 on Thursday. The record of 76.66 was set by gold medalists Shen Xue and Zhao Hongbo of China at the 2010 Olympics.

The 23-year-old Castelli and 26-year-old Shnapir began skating together in April 2006, a longevity that is unusual among current American pairs. Leng and LeDuc teamed up only in summer 2012.

Castelli and Shnapir competed at nationals before the Vancouver Games but knew they weren’t contenders to go to the Olympics and finished 10th. They were fifth in 2011 and ’12 before last year’s breakthrough.

Zhang and Bartholomay wound up finishing third at the 2013 U.S. championships, missing a spot at worlds.

“We’re very quietly coming in under the radar a little bit,” Bartholomay said. “But it’s a good feeling to know that if you put down a good program you’re going to get rewarded.”

Many of Castelli’s relatives in Rhode Island will see her compete for the first time Saturday, and they could watch her clinch an Olympic berth.

“It’s such a special and intimate moment between Simon and I, having everyone who watched us grow up, some people who’ve watched us for eight years stay together, through success and failures, and we just really want to make this special,” she said. “Today was a great day. We really felt like we came up to the challenge. We rose to the occasion. And we’re so happy now we had those fans there.

“I started the program and I was thinking, ‘What a great way to start a short, with all my family and friends around, and it’s just a special moment.’ And we love that it’s in Boston now.”

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Delta barriers no longer needed

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1

 
 
Supervisors voice concern on state Delta plans

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Dental clinic coming Friday, Saturday

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A3, 4 Comments

 
Rotarians talk about running clinic to help Haitians

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Fairfield-Suisun Sewer District eyes new auditor

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A4

 
County honors Purple Heart recipients

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A6

 
Solano recognizes 1,300-strong volunteer corps

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A6

 
Highway 12 night work scheduled in Delta

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A7

 
Kids fishing derby in Fairfield is part of Earth Day

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A7

 
Garamendi to host open house at Fairfield office

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A7

 
County approves Icon agreements

By Barry Eberling | From Page: B9

 
Ceremony set to break ground for Suisun City Walmart

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B9, 19 Comments | Gallery

Dutch Bros. opening with free drinks

By Barry Eberling | From Page: B9, 8 Comments

 
Mustangs and More event moved back to October

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A10

Museum readies to host Sallie Fox Day in Vacaville

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

 
Golf tournament to raise funds for children

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

Rotary club to host clay shooting derby

By Susan Winlow | From Page: A11

 
Ghost Walk returns to Suisun City

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A11

Penalty decision looms in Winters homicide case

By Lauren Keene | From Page: A11

 
NAMI talk on reducing mental health stigma

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A11

 
.

US / World

Michigan affirmative ban is OK, Supreme Court says

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
In Internet TV case, justices show concern

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

GOP candidate releases education policy overview

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12

 
Analysis: Putin likely to ignore West on Ukraine

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

Biden: Russia must ‘stop talking and start acting’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

 
Most Sherpas decide to leave Everest for season

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

Grieving borrowers told to repay student loan

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

 
Jet stowaway at hospital; security issues linger

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

SKorea ferry toll hits 146 as search gets tougher

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

 
Ukraine orders new ‘anti-terror’ operation

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

In Ukraine’s east, mayor held hostage by insurgent

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

 
Acts of bravery emerge from pilloried ship crew

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

‘Piles and piles’ of bodies in S. Sudan slaughter

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

 
FedEx sued over deadly California bus crash

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

Obama views mudslide scene, mourns with survivors

By The Associated Press | From Page: A14

 
IRS awards bonuses to 1,100 who owe back taxes

By The Associated Press | From Page: A15, 3 Comments

.

Opinion

 
Editorial cartoons for April 23, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A13

 

Groundwater becomes next big California fight

By Thomas Elias | From Page: A13

 
Fairfield’s main problem is the mayor

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A13, 4 Comments

.

Living

Solving and resolving life’s problems

By Barton Goldsmith | From Page: A2

 
Today in History for April 23, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

Community Calendar: April 23, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
 
A healthy take on the very not healthy Scotch egg

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

How can I get my 12-year-old grandson to sleep in his own bed?

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: B7

 
Horoscopes for April 23, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B7

.

Entertainment

DeGeneres making design series for HGTV

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Discovery to chronicle Everest avalanche

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Bieber seeks delay in Fla. DUI trial

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Bon Jovi helps open low-income housing in Philly

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9, 1 Comment

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A11

 
.

Sports

5 Fairfield runners finish Boston Marathon

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B1

 
Sharks beat Kings 4-3 in OT, take 3-0 series lead

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Prep swimming update: Postseason looms on horizon

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
SCC softball ends regular season with 29 straight wins

By Brian Arnold | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Seahawks acquire QB Terrelle Pryor

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
NFL playoff game to air on ESPN for 1st time

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

MLB suspends 4 after Brewers-Pirates brawl

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Djokovic: Wrist better, will try to play in Madrid

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Armstrong coach Bruyneel banned for 10 years

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Pujols’ 500th HR helps Angels beat Nationals 7-2

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Rangers rally for two runs in ninth to beat A’s

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Beverly Hanson, forgotten pioneer in women’s golf

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Tech boom presents new wrinkles for Wrigley Field

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Warriors announce new plans for SF arena

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Kentucky freshman Julius Randle to enter NBA draft

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
AP Source: N.Y. Giants’ Hill facing 3rd suspension

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Warriors’ Curry eager to erase Game 2 nightmare

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Spurs’ Popovich wins NBA Coach of the Year

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Raiders begin offseason workouts

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
David Moyes out as Manchester United manager

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

NBA Playoffs: Raptors even series with Nets

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
.

Business

Novartis reshapes business with GSK, Lilly deals

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
McDonald’s 1Q profit slips as US sales decline

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

AT&T had strong 1Q on wireless installment plans

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

 
Valeant, Ackman make $45.6B Allergan bid

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

.

Obituaries

Robert James Carty Sr.

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Richard P. Horn

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Dondi Martin

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Anne Irene Elizabeth Fulgoni

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 3 Comments

Kyong Hee Maxwell

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Norma O’Regan

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Wizard Of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7