Friday, February 06, 2009

What a day!

Wow...what a day of skating!

The Ice Dance competition took me by surprise. Navarro and Bommentre stayed down in 6th and were unable to make up any ground. I suggest a summer figuring out how to increase the technical difficulty for them. Canadians Weaver and Poje were very good. Their Dr. Zhivago program was very well received by the crowd. They finished 5th while their teammates Crone and Poirier also skated a solid free dance to finish 4th. Samuelson and Bates were very good. I was happy to see the dance spin was fixed and they came in a very solid 3rd. The shock came when Virtue and Moir had a couple tiny glitches in their Free Dance (which, part of the music is the same as Delobel and Schoenfelder's free) and the Davis and White had a flawless Free Dance...and...Davis and White won! I thought I was going to die because as the result went up...everyone sighed and I went 'Yes!' Needless to say, Davis and White's breakthrough season continues. Furthermore, I think Davis and White might have the goods to get over Belbin and Agosto at Worlds...

The ladies final was quite exciting. Unfortunately Alissa Czisny slipped to 9th after a free skate that had several errors in it. I hope the pressure of being American Champion isn't getting to her. Rachael Flatt moved up to finish 7th after a technically solid free skate, however, she having trouble connecting with the audience and it's showing in her component scores. Suguri came in 6th after a program that fell off in the second half. Cynthia Phaneuf finished 5th, however she was quite pleased with her program and got a standing ovation. She certainly looks stronger than she has in years. Caroline Zhang turned in a fantastic free skate! She landed all her triple jumps and had a little more speed. You can tell she has worked on that. Despite finishing 4th, she seemed overjoyed with her performance and marks. Mao Asada took the bronze despite winning the free skate. She just had a little too much ground to make up after the short program. After popping her opening axel she did a second, triple axel perfectly. Mao also skated with tremendous speed. Joannie Rochette took the silver after another solid free skate. She's making quite the habit of that this season and I think will contend for the World Title in L.A. She, also received a standing ovation. Yu-Na Kim was able to win on the strength of her short program. She had a little technical issue with her triple loop but skated well. Everytime she landed a jump the crowd went crazy. She had so much support here in Vancouver it was just amazing. I haven't seen a crowd so in love with a certain skater since the 2003 World Championships and Michelle Kwan.

One more to go, the men skate tomorrow morning!


salzburglar said...

Since you mention it, there is something about Yu-Na that always puts in mind of Kwan. No, it's not the free skate music (Scheherazade), no, it's not just that she's asian. But, there is a focus, and a deeper layer that she has gotten to with her art/sport that Kwan also did... perhaps it's a greater artistry, or even a spirituality on some level. She also embodies the stillness that Kwan had. I'm so surprised none of the commentators have ever drawn the comparison.

Anonymous said...

I always felt that Yuna is a better skater than Mao; even though i think Mao is more talented (softer knee, more spring in her jumps). The difference is determination. Kinda like Nadal and Federer. Federer is more talented but Nadal is more determine. Hence Nadal has been winning all the match ups lately. but I digress... Either way, I hope both do a perfect program at the Worlds this year because I'm ready to be wowed in person! As for Joannie, she has finally put two programs together without a fall. Wish she didn't have some minor glitches during her long... then she can say I have done 2 perfect programs in a competition. This really makes you appreciate Michelle Kwan. Yes, she had done imperfect programs time to time but over a decade, she had performed countless perfect programs. Nobody is more consistent than her. Nobody. You never ever had to worry about her jumping whereas nowadays, I'm always on the edge of my seat when I see these girls jump. Yuna sort of is the next best consistent person after Kwan. Czisny has never been consistent so I'm not surprised that she's at 9th. Had she skated 2 perfect programs, she would be in top 3. Let's see what she can do at the Worlds. I'm not getting my hopes up. I think Caroline is more consistent than her and once she gets her speed up, she'll flew pass everyone in US ladies. Flatt just skates in her own world. Hopefully she'll come out of her shell soon before everyone gets as consistent as her. Who wants to be the bridesmaid season after season!