Last week when I created the Quick Poll on which nation would have the greatest success in figure skating at the Vancouver Olympic Games, I had a sneaky suspicion that Canada might come out ahead.
So will Canada be the cream of the crop in Vancouver? They do have medal hopefuls in all four disciplines. Patrick Chan is easily one of the favorites among the men. Dube and Davison must be considered a threat in pairs. Virtue and Moir will challenge in ice dance. Joannie Rochette looks solid for Canada amongst the women. Past their nationals champions, however, the medal prospects tend to thin out.
The nation that had the second amount of votes would bank on it's dominance of two fields rather than it's prospects in all disciplines. Japan looks super solid in singles. You could rattle off names forever: Asada, Kozuka, Ando, Oda, Suguri, Takahashi, etc., etc., etc.
What about a nation like China that only looks strong in one field? However, their strength in pairs alone could lead to a complete sweep of the podium.
I was surprised Russia only got two votes and France didn't get any! What about the French men and ice dancers? What about all the Russian's out there? Plushenko, Domnina and Shabalin, Mukhortova and Trankov, Kawaguchi and Smirnov, Alena Leonova? One could argue France looks as good as Japan and Russia looks as good Canada...where's the love?
Then there's the U.S. Like Canada and Russia we look well rounded. We're especially plump in our men's and dance fields. So plump we can't say definitively who'll be on the Olympic Team quite yet (although most of us have some strong opinions on who it SHOULD be). We look 'okay' amongst the women and 'okay' in pairs too, although those Olympic spots are somewhat in question as well (even more in question given the news of this past week). Wonder why the U.S. wasn't given the same consideration Canada was? I checked my blog stats...Americans visited this blog more than twice as much as Canadians this past week so it wasn't a battle of nations...Canada won the vote fair and square.
Perhaps given that the Olympics are in Canada, we perhaps think their skaters will have that little bit of extra motivation, a little extra spark, and rise to the occasion and bask in the glory that winning an Olympic Medal at home brings. Don't we all love a feel good story?
Want to know my opinion on who the cream of the crop is? I haven't a clue! We'll just have to wait and see.