So I'm a day behind on my posts...you'll have to forgive me. Earning a Master's Degree has a tendency to occupy my time. Having a cold doesn't help either, but, tis the season.
But what an exctining Trophee Eric Bompard was. First can I say what a stud Craig Duhamel is! There was blood everywhere but that wasn't stopping him at all. After the unfortunate finger slicing which caused the program to stop, he just went out there and gave it everything. I actually thought he and Megan looked better in the second half. I was kind of under the impression that maybe they should have won the silver instead of the bronze, but, I guess that's just me. Mukhortova looked a little better than they did at Skate America. They seemed to improve technically as the program went on but that choreography is still dreadful. Silver for them. German Savchenko and Szolkowy again took the gold but had mistakes of their own including a throw triple salchow that just never happened. The Germans may have big problems when they finally face Zhang and Zhang later in the season. Also, I have to gloat...I called the podium!
Big upset for Joannie Rochette who takes another title! She turned in another solid program on her way to Gold. She wasn't quite as good as she was in Ottawa, but it was far better than Mao Asada who just didn't seem quite ready for her season to begin. A free skate plagued with errors left her in second. Caroline Zhang bettered her performance from Ottawa to pick up the bronze, however, her performance is lifeless and the technique on the lutz and flip seem worse than last year. Also, she is still being hit with downgrades here and there. Lots to work on before Nationals in Cleveland. Way off the podium was Emily Hughes who was a disaster. Poor thing went down three times. Hopefully she can pull herself together for Nationals.
Wonderful ice dancing. The Kerrs looked sharp in their free dance. I just love the speed and abandon they skate with. Another bronze for them. I was a bit worried when I say Maximo come out in this Pagliacchi outfit but the music was 'Moonlight Sonata' but I must say I thought it was brilliant. I loved how the concept for the program wasn't difficult to understand and the lifts were amazing on their way to silver. I'm finding myself really liking Delobel and Schoenfelder's Free Dance the more I see it. It's easy, light, and easy on the eyes while still managing to be crazy difficult. Another Gold for them and a very happy French crowd that got their money's worth! Got this podium right too!
Operation Pummel the Podium has failed. Ryan Bradley didn't pull off an upset...he didn't pull much off at all. Jumps that were his friend in Canada betrayed him here and hell fell down the standings. Joubert didn't fare well either. I don't know if it is equipment issues or mind games but he turned in a lack luster program as well and failed to make the podium. My advice to Brian is to avoid this event. I know it's your home event but you rarely compete well here and usually compete very well elsewhere...stick with what works! His teammate, Preaubert, however was stellar and pulled up to win the Bronze. I loved how excited he was at the end of that program! Takahiko Kozuka again showed some amazing skating skills with an even better program than he did in Everett to take the silver. Patrick Chan successfully defended his title to win. He looked much stronger than he did in Canada and made good on his promise of actually 'earning' his win this time.
All that fun and the GP Final is starting to take some definite shape. Savchenko and Szolkowy have locked a spot and Mukhortova and Trankov look good to make it as well. Joannie Rochette is in. Delobel and Schoenfelder have qualified and the Kerr's are on the fence. Good thing for them is that Crone and Porier who won the silver in Canada were fourth in Paris so the Kerr's look okay. Both Chan and Kozuka have also locked up spots in the Final. Lysacek is still hanging in and got some help with Joubert's fourth place finish but it's still a rocky road ahead for him.