Thursday, November 18, 2010

ISU Grand Prix: Rostelecom Cup Pairs Short Program

1) Katarina Gerboldt & Alexander Enbert (Russia) **
   Music: Waltz Medley by Liberace
  • Oh Hey Tamara Moskvina
  • This is a new team in their first season together
  • The jumps were landed cleanly, but not quite in unison
  • That was a terribly low catch on the split twist, she landed draped over his shoulder
  • I like this piece of music a lot
  • Her free leg was a high  wrap on the throw, but cleanly landed
  • Nice unison on the spins until the last few revolutions
  • They definitely look like a Moskvina team
  • He almost lost her in that over head lift, she was terribly crooked but they held onto it
  • A major loss of speed on this footwork
  • They are young and inexperienced but have the makings of a great pair team
  • I dont love how they did their final pose at the end of the ice
  • She's having a bit of a thong situation with her costume
  • SP Score: 29.62 (TES) + 24.00 (PCS) = 53.62
  • **TES stands for Technical Elements Score, PCS stands for Program Components Score
2) Britney Simpson & Nathan Miller (USA)
   Music: Pink Panther
  • They are using the same music as Savchenko/Szolkowy, thats a lot to live up to
  • Wow Britney is only 14
  • I think age pairings are the major issue with US pair teams; he is 8 years older than her at 22 so there is no way they can last the same length of time in their careers; almost all of our pair teams in the US have this issue
  • Clean side by sides, slight loss of unison
  • Crash landing on split twist
  • She definitely squeaked out a landing on that throw
  • Their spins looked very clean to me
  • I like the foot  work but would love to see more speed
  • Overhead lift was decent, but exit needs work
  • I didn't love her bent leg position on the death spiral
  • SP Score: 26.97 (TES) + 23.37 (PCS) = 50.28
3) Paige Lawrence & Rudi Swiegers (Canada) **
   Music: City Slickers
  •  They took a side by side fall on their side by side jumps in the warm up so lets see how they do
  • They were wonderful at Skate Canada and they are on my fantasy team so lets see if they can match it here
  • That was a pretty clean landing on the split twist
  • I love their speed and flow across the ice
  • Paige falls on the side by side and Rudi puts a hand down and two foots; should only be a one point deduction, but still its a tough break in momentum
  • I'm really loving this musical selection
  • Their lift hits nice positions, but lacks in speed
  • I like that they really tell a story with their program and it is a complete experience rather than  just a program
  • That throw was very solid and right at the end of the program too
  • I would have liked to have seen better from them, but I've learned to not get too upset after the short as anything can happen in the long
  • SP Score: 28.73 (TES) + 24.94 (PCS) - 2.00 (deduction) = 51.67
4) Tatiana Novik & Mikhail Kuznetsov (Russia) **
   Music: Somewhere in Time
  • This team is on  my fantasy team so lets hope they are solid here
  • This is a gorgeous selection of music
  • That was a fairly clean catch on the split twist
  • She had that jump and then she just sat down out of it
  • My pairs aren't doing so hot here now are they
  • She lands the throw, but with little height or rotational speed
  • I love their overhead lift
  • They have a nice lyrical quality, and I can tell that is what they are going for, but I would like more energy and passion from them
  • I think they could benefit from Tamara Moskvina, they are missing that signature Russian quality
  • Their spins look very solid, good job on the camera angle here icenetwork
  • They also ended at the end of the ice in their final pose which I find odd
  • He has the Plushenko haircut
  • SP Score: 22.60 (TES) + 23.88 (PCS) - 1.00 (deduction) = 45.48
**Group 2 six minute warm up**

5) Stefania Berton & Ondrej Hotarek (Italy)
   Music: Invierno Porteno
  • I believe this is Takahshi's free skate music?
  • I specifically remember saying that the only Spanish programs I can handle this season are Davis/White and Takahashi, the rest I cannot deal with
  • Clean side by sides to open
  • Speed is always difficult to see on tv, but I can tell they are going very fast
  • I always wonder what pair coaches do to teach their teams to spin in unison
  • I also wonder if they are counting the revolutions in their head or if they just know
  • She does that ass-out entrance on the death spiral, which we all know I hate
  • I have a lot of pet peeves, and unfortunately most of them have to do with pairs
  • That throw had no height on it and she put a hand down to save it
  • For such dynamic music, that program really did not do much for me
  • SP Score: 25.84 (TES) + 23.94 (PCS) = 49.78
6) Amanda Evora & Mark Ladwig (USA)
   Music: The Mask of Zorro
  • I always find these movie soundtrack short programs a little hard to take because its hard to develop character and tell a story in 2 and a half minutes
  • That was a clean catch on the split twist
  • Clean side by sides
  • If they can land their throw cleanly, they'll be safely in medal contention as the rest of the teams have struggled
  • Throw was clean!
  • They look like a world class pair team right now
  • I wish they could have peaked a little younger because at 26 and 30, they have maybe one or two seasons left at best
  • I say they go into first after this program
  • Now that is a lovely death spiral with a nice entrance and a beautiful position
  • Their lifts are some of the best in the world
  • Now that is what I call a clean, solid short program
  • I'm so proud of them, what a stellar short
  • SP Score: 27.38 (TES) + 25.20 (PCS) = 52.58
7) Narumi Takahashi & Mervin Tran (Japan)
   Music: Feeling Good
  • Is she related to Dice-K??
  • This team is an anomaly to me because normally you don't think of Japan as being strong in pairs, but they are pretty solid
  • Wow the height on that split twist was crazy
  • These spins are very fast
  • Japan would be smart to focus on building a pairs program because they have such strong singles skaters and there is no way they can all compete on the world level
  • That lift is very strong with the change of positions and the speed
  • This may put them in first although I am clearly not understanding the judging because I thought Evora/Ladwig should have gone into first (but we are in Russia afterall) ; I'll have to look at the protocol sheets later
  • She is just ecstatic after this performance; so fun to watch!
  • SP Score: 29.70 (TES) + 26.20 (PCS) = 55.90
8) Yuko Kavaguti & Alexander Smirnov (Russia) **
   Music: Thus Spoke Zarathustra
  • Here we go, the team that could have been that never really was
  • At 28/26, they are probably about done
  • She almost loses it on the side by side
  • This is one of the few pair teams where I prefer to watch the man perform
  • She barely held onto the landing of the throw
  • Good height on the split twist
  • She does the ass-out death spiral entrance and then her head almost hits the ground
  • Good unison on the spins, but they aren't very fast
  • She almost kicked him in the face with her head on the overhead lift
  • Those pockets or ruffles or whatever on the side of his pants are really really awkward
  • He has the same hair as Donald Trump Jr
  • They should go into first, although in my opinion, Evora/Ladwig were the hit of this event
  • SP Score: 32.49 (TES) + 29.42 (PCS) = 61.91
  • This lead is not nearly as overwhelming as I expected, they left room for others to eclipse them in the free skate tomorrow
Current Leaderboard:
Kavaguti/Smirnov (Russia)          61.91
Takahshi/Tran (Japan)                55.90
Gerboldt/Enbert (Russia)             53.62 
Evora/Ladwig (USA)                    52.58
Lawrence/Swiegers (Canada)     51.67
Simpson/Miller (USA)                  50.28
Berton/Hotarek (Italy)                  49.78
Novik/Kuznetsov (Russia)            45.48

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