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Judges return with winning feeling from Olympic Qualifier

The Olympic Qualifier saw British Ice Dance Couple Nick Buckland and Penny Coomes achieve their goal of securinga place for Great Britain at the next Winter Olympics. 


But the ice skaters weren’t the only NISA members to return home triumphant from the Nebelhorn Trophy in Oberstdorf.


While skaters from all over the world were preparing to perform for the crowd, NISA Judges Stephen Fernandez and Lisa Davidson were busy taking their ISU level exams for Dance and Singles/Pairs. 


Taking on their examinations behind the scenes throughout the event, both Stephen and Lisa succeeded to become ISU Level judges. 


Having both moved up to ISU Level, they’re now eligible to officiate at large ISU events, including European and World Championships - even the Olympics. 


Lisa, who took her ISU exam in Singles and Pairs, said: “After having the honour to represent my country for the last few years as an International Judge, I feel delighted to have been given the chance to now take the exam and progress to an ISU. 


“I couldn't have got to where I am without all the help from people over the years and especially Mary Chapman in the lead up to my ISU exam.”



Stephen has been a NISA Judge for 20 years and took his ISU Dance examination at the Nebelhorn Trophy. 


Stephen said: “I am delighted to have passed the ISU Championship exam in Ice Dance. As a judge this is the culmination of many years’ work, from my first oral ice dance exam, taken at Bristol Ice Rink almost twenty years ago, to International Competitions and now Championship level. 


“It is a privilege to have been appointed to the ISU list of judges. I would like to express my thanks to my mentor, Garry Hoppe, for all of his support and guidance.”



NISA Judges and Officials Director Judy Clinton said: “I am absolutely delighted that two of our excellent International Judges have now moved up to ISU. 


“It has been an exciting year with new ISU and International Judges in both Ice Dance and Singles/Pairs as well as our new International Referees.


“We are also excited to have a good foundation of future Judges and Officials in preparation for the next few years, including Technical and Data Panel Officials.” 


Lisa and Stephen join a small number of NISA Judges who are qualified to judge at ISU events across the world. 


This year the following NISA Judges and Officials have developed as ISU and International Judges: 

ISU Dance - Stephen Fernandez
International Dance - Lucy Visinoni

ISU Singles/Pairs - Lisa Davidson
International Singles/Pairs - Matthew Miller 

International Referee Singles/Pairs - Mary Chapman