Skate Canada International 2012: Predictions

Ok. I totally should be doing something else right now but I suppose I do need to do these predictions before the competition starts tomorrow as well. I also have a few comments on Tessa and Scott’s Carmen FD but those will have to wait until the weekend.

Prediction time! A picture of Tessa and Scott in practice beckons you in…

Men

Patrick Chan. In Chanada. ‘Nuff said. If I say any more, I might get angry.

As for the rest of the podium a few interesting skaters to consider would be Javier Fernandez, who won bronze at the Finlandia Trophy. He might of had to take a step down in Brian Orser’s stable now that Yuzuru Hanyu is there as well. (This kid is getting screwed over by the lack of political power his figure skating union has…) However, he does have talent and if this year will be similar to last year, he’ll start the season off well. Nobunari Oda is coming back after a season of injuries. I think this guy will have to get used to being the #4 Japanese man because it’s become clear that Yuzuru is being groomed to be the next top Japanese man and the men’s field is quite deep in Japan, unfortunately. We’ll hope that since his last competitive season, he’s learned how to count and how to not violate the zayak rules. In any case, Oda’s soft knees and jumping abilities give him a chance at the podium. Unless he violates the zayak rules for the ten millionth time. Florent Amodio will probably show two more brain damage-inducing programs by or edited by Nikolai Morozov. Florent has been floundering in the ranks lately, which will put him at a disadvantage here in my predictions.

Predictions:

Gold: Patrick Chan
Silver: Javier Fernandez
Bronze:  Nobunari Oda

Ladies

Two young babies face off in Skate Canada this year and I’m so excited: Elizaveta Tuktamysheva will defend her title with up and coming youngin’ Gracie Gold nipping at her heels. If that wasn’t exciting enough, we’ll throw in two Japanese ladies into the mix: Akiko Suzuki, who, unlike most skaters, improves with age and Kanako Murakami who has shown some promise but had a few difficulties last season. I quite adore Akiko’s peacock LP but I’ve got a feeling the JFSA is still unwilling to back her up politically and have the judges raise her PCS. This girl may get robbed in this competition so brace yourselves.

Predictions:

Gold: Elizaveta Tuktamysheva
Silver: Akiko Suzuki (prove me wrong, Akiko!)
Bronze: Gracie Gold

Pairs

Well, looking at this really shallow field, I can say that barring major freak accidents, Aliona Savchenko & Robin Szolkowy should take the gold quite handily. This being Canada and seeing that this pair isn’t completely terrible (better than most of the rest of the field), Meaghan Duhamel & Eric Radford should be able to clinch the silver quite easily as well. The rest of this field is rather weak though I do remember Stefania Berton & Ondrej Hotarek impressing me with their lines and flow last year. They are also one of the few teams on this roster that have won a GP medal so I will neatly put them into the bronze predictions slot here.

Predictions:

Gold: Aliona Savchenko & Robin Szolkowy
Silver: Meaghan Duhamel & Eric Radford
Bronze: Stefania Berton & Ondrej Hotarek

Ice Dance

The gold prediction here should be simple as well with Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir winning the competition. Something extreme would have to happen in order for them to not win. The fun thing about this competition though is the *Battle of the Carmens*. Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte who I think will probably win silver is being trained by the recently fired Igor Shpilband, Tessa & Scott’s former coach. After reading about Tessa & Scott’s interpretation of the program as well as seeing bits of it in practice, I’m very impressed that they’ve departed from their usual style while it seems that Anna and Luca have adopted Tessa and Scott’s style for Carmen. (To see what I mean, just take a look at this post that I wrote a little while ago.) Still, C/L have a long way to go before they reach Tessa and Scott’s level so the battle isn’t going to be as exciting as what could have been the Battle of the Pink Floyds with Delobel & Schoenfelder back in 2009.

For bronze, the pick will be pretty hard. I wouldn’t be surprised if Skate Canada somehow put another Canadian team out there but the rest of the field is pretty weak. Piper Gilles & Paul Poirier is a new team with potential though the politicking would probably be the reason if they won the bronze this competition. There is the possibility that we’ll be surprised by one of the other teams and I do hope that this is the case.

Predictions:

Gold: Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir
Silver: Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte
Bronze: Piper Gilles & Paul Poirier

What are your predictions for Skate Canada?

~The Rinkside Cafe

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