Thursday, October 17, 2013

2013 Skate America: Pairs Preview

Pairs is a discipline I run hot and cold with. I was all about them after that 2002 debacle and then they faded away for me until Shen & Zhao won the Olympic Gold in 2010. The rivalry between Savchenko & Szolkowy and Volosozhar & Trankov has been thrilling for me in the past two seasons and I truly hope they are back and forth up until their Olympic Free Skate. That being said, let's talk about this event. The paris will skate their short Saturday 10/19 at 12:00pm EST and their free on Sunday 10/20 at 2:30pm EST.

Tatiana Volosozhar & Maxim Trankov (RUS) are the overwhelming favorites here. They will win unless they withdraw. I am hearing fantastic things about their Jesus Christ Superstar free (notice the abundance of British musical theatre tunes at this event) and I'm sure they won't disappoint. This event will be about getting their timing down and building strength and speed so they can ace this season. Anyone in the arena to watch them live in Detroit will be in for a treat.

Kirsten Moore-Towers & Dylan Moscovitch (CAN) have been developing a healthy rivalry with their
countrymen Duhamel & Radford, and it's been great for their performance over the past two seasons.They are coming off of a win at the US Classic in Salt Lake City and US events have always treated them well. I'm not sure what to make of their Fellini Medley free skate, but they've always been a little offbeat in their choices. They're a contender for a Grand Prix Final spot and they have a great shot at taking silver here to keep themselves in the running.

Caydee Denney & John Coughlin (USA) seem to be the logical choices for the third podium spot. Their Phantom of the Opera free skate (another ALW?) should be an overdramatized tacky mess, but they are consistent which is something most pairs cannot say. The rumor mill was busy last season that they weren't getting along anymore and/or that John's body was too wrecked to compete, but I think they'll press on through this season to make it to the big dance.

Ksenia Stolbova & Fedor Klimov (RUS) are in a crucial year in
their career. There are so many young powerful Russian pairs, they aren't too far removed from that, so they better step it up if they are going to make that Olympic team. A good showing here will set them on the right track.

Marissa Castelli & Simon Shnapir (USA) are my prediction for the next US pair to break up and fizzle out. They essentially won the US title by default last season because so  many top teams were injured. Rumors flew that they had a poor work ethic and they were only staying together so they could go to worlds. They aren't a favorite for the Olympic team, but if they want to change the minds of US Figure Skating, they best hold it together here.

Podium Predictions:
Gold: Volosozhar & Trankov (RUS)
Silver: Moore-Towers & Moscovitch (CAN)
Brozne: Denney & Coughlin (USA)

The Rest of the Field:
Purdy/Marinaro (CAN)
Berton/Hotarek (ITA)
Stolbova/Klimov (RUS)
Castelli/Shnapir (USA)
Zhang/Bartholomay (USA)

No comments:

Post a Comment