>Sandra's question and the follow-up provides another example
>of why skating judging is so tough. Apparently we have a
>couple "eye-witnesses" and several more who watched on TV who
>cant agree whether the team did SBS triples or whether Brian o
>only did a double. (On my TV it looked like a double) The
>thing is, like all of us, 9 judges had that one look at the
>jumps and while it was obviously very important to the overall
>technical mark the team received, we have no idea whether
>2 or 7 or perhaps all 9 saw it as a 2/3 or vice versa.
This is part of the reason why we use 9 judges. Since the scoring
system uses the median ordinal (placement) that the judges give, it
is based in majority opinion as to what actually occured. Essentially
the system toss all the highs and lows and keeps just the middle
placement until there is a need for tie breakers.
Anyway, it is wise to remember that the judges are charged with judging
the program as a *whole* and not as a sum of pieces. It is possible
for a skater (or team) to do more and wind up placed lower because
the overall quality was lower. A poor triple should not cause a higher
placement over a good solid double....
It sometimes happens, but not as often as you may think, that the
winner is determined by a single element. Usually there is enough
difference throughout the entire program to make a resonable ranking
based on the quality of the skating. This is part of why at times
skaters that *technically* do more wind up placing below someone who
performed beautifully but missed or cheated one element.
Anyone can count jumps. The judges evaluate the skating. It's the
totality of the skating that determines the winner -- jumps, spins,
edges, footwork.... And it should be no real surprise to anyone that
frequently the stronger skater is also the better jumper. The other
moves take strength and sureness to complete well, strength and
sureness *are* part of the reason why the better jumper is better!