© SkyscraperCity
© SkyscraperCity

Coupe de Russie 2018 - Part 1

La sécurité, c'est bien. Mais il ne faut pas non plus être obtus. Que l'on soit à La MegaSport Arena en tant que fan ou reporter, impossibilité totale de bouger du siège qui vous est assigné. Résultat : pendant le programme court couples, tous les premiers rangs sont déserts car réservés par des fans Japonais venus voir leurs compatriotes en disciplines individuelles. Et ils ne se montrent jamais pour les autres épreuves. L'effet à la télévision doit être celui d'une patinoire aux trois-quarts vides pendant que les spectateurs présents, quasiment collés au plafond, voient les patineurs de la taille d'une fourmi. Mais nous ne plaignons pas, les sièges ont de jolies couleurs ! 



Le programme court hommes se termine avec une grosse surprise : le Géorgien Moris Kvitelashvili et le Suédois Alexander Majorov sont respectivement second et troisième. Lors de la conférence de presse qui suit l'épreuve, Majorov nous confie que ses deux plus grand rêves sont d'entrer dans le top 3 européen et dans le top 3 d'un Grand Prix. Un des deux s'est donc réalisé. 



The very disapponted Russian Kolyada
popped the 3a, did a 3lz2t combo and put a free leg on a 4T, which
sent him down to the 8ths place, wiping off any chance to make it to
the GPF. Another disappointment was the skating of the Canadian
Messing, whose programme was completely messed. He is currently 7th
right above Kolyada. Hanyu skated a near perfect programme and, as was
expected, ended 1st. Fortunately he was skating last, hence the rain
of poohs that followed his skate didn't bother anyone.

The pairs competition opened with the Russians Efimova/Korovin, who
are skating to `Human' - a piece the Czech Brezina introduced to
figure skating last year. They were followed by the americans
Stellato/Bartholomay and again, the americans Cain/LeDuc. The
nationals will be interesting - none of the pairs seems to be much
better than the other. While Stellato/Bartholomay did not make any
clearly visible mistakes Cain/Leduc's skate was quite all over the
place, included a stumble from him on the steps, on the spins and a
horrible off timing attempt for a throw jump which ended without a
jump. Ashley looked super disappointed after the skate and seemed she
could not believe it went THAT bad.  The Russians yesterday's juniors
Pavluchenko/Khodykin completed the first group, opening with a lovely
split twist, a sbs3t, a 3f throw jump seemed as if Daria splitted a it
on the landing, but held it. In an interview they admitted they both
failed as the single skaters, and while Khodykin swithced to pairs
while still too young to work on his muscles and took his time to find
a partner Pavluchenko retired altogether at the age of 12. She was
callde by Khodykin's coach and asked to come back and try pairs. Kudos
to the coach who remembered the talented skater and had a vision of
what they would look like together. Great pairing.
The next group featured 3 Mozer teams out of 4 - the Australians
Alexandrovskaya/Windsor, the italians Della Monica/Guarise and the
Russians Tarasova/Morozov, who had Trankov dressed in a toxiedo on
The Australians opened with a lovely sbs 3t, unfortunately their spins
are anything but parallel - she is obviously spinning faster than him,
the throw 3f was good, the lift dismount was somehow shaky, but the
programme was great otherwise.
The Austrians skated their lovely soft programme to "Fortitude' by
Haevn opening with a 3 split twist, a clean 3t, think they are the
first team towday whose 3t is actually quite parallel, the clean throw
3f. The team proves again they are one of the top european teams and
should be taken into an account.
the Italians DellaMonica/Guarize had Mozer on their side sending them
to the ice. Opening with a clean sbs 3s and a lovely throw3loop.
The last to skate are the Russians Tarasova/Morozov who started
working with the new coach Trankov, after working with Szelkowy for
several years. Trankov said in the interview they had learned the
throw 3f, which is not in the list of the planned elements for the SP.
they also put aside the 4split twist for now, because the smallest
mistake there is too costly and it's easier/more worthy doing a big
clean 3split twist instead. They still have the element, jsut that
with the current rules they see no point integrating it into their
programmes. Trankov also added the short programme was not his
music/mood choice - he wanted one thing, they wanted another and they
ended up with a 3rd. However, the coach to send them off and to talk
to Tarasova right before the start was Mozer and not Trankov. The
split twist was huge the sbs 3t was not the cleanest, but good, the
huge throw 3loop sent the audience through the roof. really everything
about their skating is a completely different league - the speed ,the
amplitude, the edgesm the freedom on and between the elements. but of
course, Tarasova/Morozov being Tarasova/Morozov they made sure to
leave a lot of points on hte table. Not anything that would shatter
their chances to win the SP here, but might be dangerous once they
compete against Zabijako/Enbert, James/Cipres and Sui/Han.

The laides event featured only 10 ladies, included 3 Russians, 3
Japanese, a comeback for the American Gold, the amazing Korean Eunsoo
Lim, the Swiss Paganini and the Kazakh Tursynbaeva, who had switched
coaches this year from the Canadian Orser to the Russian Tutberidze.
during the warm up all the eyes were on Gold - will she skate the LP
or will she WD after the SP, which would be enough for the US
nationals? Is she back? Is she in shape? She landed a couple of clean
2A and a 3lz2t.
The competition opened with the Japanese Matsuda, who opened with a
3t2t, instead of the planned 3t3t, it was followed by a 3s and a 2a to
The american Gold skated her SP to the I put a spell on you. Instead
of a planned 3z3t she opened with a 2z2t, although during the warm up
she landed a 3z2t several times. She then fell from a 3f and popped a
2a. Afraid am one of these people who would prefer to remember the
Gold circa 2014 and pretend this skate never happened. With 37.51 she
was dead last.
The Swiss Paganini skated to `Yo Soy Maria' opened with 3z3t- very
careful and very clean. it was followed by a telegraphed through tree
turns 3loop, again, very careful and very clean. Alexia looks a bit
like the excellent pupil on te ice - she does exctly what she was told
- am not sure there is much interpretation, but sje is so lovely to
watch. a clean 2a finished the jumping content. I think she is not
passionate enough for a tango, but again, really pleasant to watch.
The first Russian of today Samodurova from St. Petersburg - a Mishin
pupil skated to Nyah. opened with a tano3lztano3t. She is another
skater who could be a European champion if she wasn't a Russian and
even made it to the Europeans. Am afraid this music is forever
Browning's for me and anyone who is not Browning can not enterprete
it. Samodurova continued to a clean tano3loop and a clean 2A to
complete the ksate. All the spins looked lovely and the step sequence
felt like half an hour long and did not go with the music at all.
The group closed with the Russian Polina Tsurskaya, who is my current
Russian favourite - a 1.80sm tall she has the biggest and the highest
jumps in the field. She opened with a huge 3z3t followed by a 2A, and
finished with a mistake doing a 2loop.
the second group opened with the Korean Lim. She opened with a 3lz
(the planned content named 3lz3t), think she is the fastest across the
ice for today so far. a step out from a 3f left her without a combo
jump, a step out from a 2a. she is such a lovely and soft skater, hope
the LP will be nothing like hte SP today... I would love to see her
well - the programme is gorgeous, so are her lines.
The Japanese Yamashita skated to Barber of Seville started with a step
out from a 3z, a 2a from a spread eagle, a slight travel on the spins.
I wonder who does she listen to this music every day - it's really
annoying. A fall from a 3f.
the Olympic champion Zagitova skated next to her new programme to
Phantom of the Opera. 2 weeks ago she was unable to land her 3z3loop
combination, today it was spot on! The axel from a spiral she was
struggling with last year works great for her this year. Every element
was followed by a roar from the crowd. a rippon 3f to finish - a true
skate of a champion. If she can have such a skates in the other
competitions she probably would be unbeatable. A smile from the coach
Tutberidze who had just lost her mother last week.
The Japanese Shiraiwa skated next - opened with a 3lz3t, travelled all
the way to Japan on herspins (which are also really slow). I can only
imagine the fight for the 3rd spot at the Japanese nationals and
Shiraiwa will be one of the contenders ( I don't see her beating
Kihira or Miyahara if all 3 are clean). a 2a covering half a rink. A
very lively programme, he got everyone behind her, it seemed the
audience had much more fun than during all hte previous ladies
combined. A lovely 3loop to finish.
The last to skate was the Kazakh Tursynbaeva to moonlight sonata. The
moonlight sonata was double annoying - the cuts and lifting it 1/4
tone up - perhaps they needed it to go faster, but it really causes
bleeding ears. a 3luurz she saved, a 2a, and a 3s turn and a 2t
instead of a 3t.