I must say I completely enjoyed myself today! To begin, I slept in (and that was needed), went shopping at the local outlet stores, went to see the Pagoda, and had a blast at the Sovereign Center!
I was really shocked at the pairs outcome. Dube and Davison managed to hold off the Chinese team of Pang and Tong. Bazarova and Larionov won the bronze. But that wasn't the most exciting part...as it would happen I was sitting next to Amanda Evora's (Amanda Evora and Mark Ladwig finished 4th) who was very knowledgeable and fun to chat with. Things got even more interesting when Mark and Amanda joined us in the stands. We had more fun talking skating, joking, and laughing then we ever should have...and they were there all night...good times. Please note, if you need to get a bear from your seat to the ice as a gift for a skater, Mark Ladwig can get it there 2 out of 3 times! Great skaters, great people.
No shock in the Ice Dance...Tanith and Ben still lead heading into the Free Skate. Their OD is this banjo, country thing that while technically difficult, it leaves me a little unimpressed. The whole folk music thing this year doesn't really do it for me. I wasn't a huge fan of most of the OD's except the French team of Pechalat and Bourzat; they skated to this Spanish piece that had lots of power, they're in second and the Italians are still third. Davis and White moved up to fourth. I was watching Meryl and Charlie warm up their twizzles in the warm-up and I said "very spiffy." A woman turns around in the seat in front of me, pats my leg, and says "I like you." Moments later enter two girls wearing white "Team Davis and White" t-shirts and I'm made aware that they are Charlie's sisters and she in fact is Meryl's mother...thankfully I like this team and was saying nice things!
The ladies short program was great! Very decent skating from the top six ladies. Looking at the standings the spread between 4th and 9th place is slim. Emily Hughes is in 4th after missing her opening combination, she then changed the program and added the combo later...that's a no no...and she suffered points. Caroline Zhang made her senior debut and it was stunning. She truly is a gem and several of us thought maybe she should be in the lead. Miki Ando is 2nd...she was cruising through her program until she went splat on the ice during her footwork sequence. Had it not been for that fall she would be the leader. Kimmie Meissner tops the leader board with her performance to "The Feeling Begins." Interestingly she lost no points for doing a triple lutz/triple toe in which the triple toe was cheated...it wasn't even downgraded yet Caroline Zhang's performance was nit picked to all hell by the judges...I'm just saying...
The men closed the night and Daisuke took the title with an up and down performance (his 14 point lead after the short helped!). He nailed is opening quad, fell on the triple axel. He went on to land several more jumps including a second axel but then fell on a triple lutz late in his program. It was good enough for a win. Evan brought the house down with his performance to "Tosca." His only problem came when he stepped out of his quad. Amazing footwork sequence in this program too. He won the free skate and placed 2nd overall and the program is fantastic, great job Evan. Patrick Chan of Canada made a splash with the bronze and seems very much like a skater on the move, he too had a great program. I have to mention the other two American Men who skated great as well! Ryan Bradley debuted his "Charlie Chaplin" number and it is Ryan at his best...but I still say work on those skating skills and he can place higher than 6th. Big night for Stephen Carriere, most of the people I was sitting near had no clue who this guy was (I informed them that he in fact is the reigning Jr. World Champ) and he skated great as well too finishing 4th...I'm thinking Nationals dark horse for the podium?
The weather broke today so I hope for lovely weather tomorrow here in Reading!