Ice Network

Gold taking time off, will seek professional help

Two-time U.S. champ also announces she will not compete at Japan Open
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Gracie Gold's struggles with confidence could be traced back to the 2016 World Figure Skating Championships, where she missed the podium after finishing first in the short program. -Getty Images

Two-time U.S. champion Gracie Gold announced Friday that she is going to take some time off before the start of her season to seek professional help. 

"My passion for skating and training remains strong," Gold said in the statement. "However, after recent struggles on and off the ice, I realize I need to seek some professional help and will be taking some time off while preparing for my Grand Prix assignments. This time will help me become a stronger person, which I believe will be reflected in my skating performances as well."

Gold has admitted that she had a tough time dealing with the disappointment she experienced at the 2016 World Figure Skating Championships, where she led after the short program but placed just sixth in the free skate to miss the podium.

She told icenetwork in an October 2016 article, "I wasn't depressed, per se, but close to it. I definitely wasn't myself. The people close to me were not worried, but they were like, 'You're not Gracie. Let's get going.'"

Gold, the fourth-place finisher at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, struggled mightily last season, failing to medal at either of her Grand Prix events and placing sixth at the 2017 U.S. Figure Skating Championships -- the first time she finished outside the top two at that event.

After the free skate, her coach at the time, Frank Carroll, told icenetwork reporter Philip Hersh, "She has been in a deep, deep, deep depression."

Prior to those U.S. championships, Gold talked to Hersh via telephone and stopped short of saying she was depressed: "I never felt I was in an actual depression and I needed a psychologist. I was fine out of the rink. It was just in the rink and in skating (that) I wasn't myself."

Following the event in Kansas City, she and Carroll parted ways, and a couple of weeks later she announced she had commenced training with Marina Zoueva in Canton, Michigan.

Gold also announced Friday she will not compete in the Japan Open, an invitational team competition that will be held Oct. 7 in Saitama, Japan. She is scheduled to compete at Cup of China and Internationaux de France in this fall's Grand Prix Series.