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U.S. figure skater Ross Miner’s free skate pays tribute to Boston after marathon bombings

Ross Miner

Ross Miner competes for the United States during the Men’s Free Skate event at the 2013 World Figure Skating Championships March 15, 2013 in London, Ontario, Canada. AFP PHOTO/Brendan SMIALOWSKI (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)

AFP/Getty Images

Reigning U.S. silver medalist Ross Miner dedicated his long program to start the figure skating season to the spirit of Boston following the bombings at the Boston Marathon on April 15.

“At first I was a little concerned,” Miner, a native of nearby Watertown, Mass., told “I didn’t want to be that guy who took advantage of a situation. But I realized this hit very close to home and it was very real to me.”

Miner will debut his skate to Michael W. Smith’s “Glory” in competition in October. One of his coaches, Mark Mitchell, suggested the music after listening to it in mid-May, according to the website.

It was music he had in his files for a couple of years and had considered using for Miner in the past. But when he heard it this time, the music spoke to Mitchell, almost telling him the story of the Boston bombings. The more Mitchell listened, the more he became convinced that Miner could use the music not only to tell about the bombings but also of the strength of the city they call home.

The program will certainly gain plenty of attention at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in January, which are in Boston.

There, Miner will compete for one of two spots on the U.S. Olympic team. The other top contenders are 2013 U.S. champion Max Aaron, three-time U.S. champion Jeremy Abbott and Evan Lysacek, the 2010 Olympic champion making a comeback in a bid for his third Olympics.

“I think it will carry me more than anything,” Miner told “I think it will make the crowd feel what I’m feeling.”

Miner said the program will include two quadruple Salchows, two triple Axels and two triple-triple combinations.

The free skate certainly will have its emotional elements (a death drop, for instance, when there is a crashing sound in the music, signifying a bomb blast) but will include plenty of technical difficulty as well.

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