Predictions: Worlds 2016

Gracie Gold 2016

I hope everyone had a lovely Easter long weekend! Once my precious days off were over, I realized that Worlds was starting very soon and I had to get my act together and do a Worlds predictions post. My last few predictions have been off the mark but hey, it happens and it won’t deter me from making more. So here goes!

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Predictions: World Championships 2015

kaitlyn andrew 15 4cc fd

The World Championships are upon us! I’m not sure if I should be sad that the season is almost over (we do have the World Team Trophy afterwards, after all) or if I should be happy that we’ve wrapped up a post-Olympic season and that we can look forward to more polished competitors in the fall. Either way, it’s time to make some predictions! More

Predictions: 2014 World Figure Skating Championships

So, welcome to the predictions for the 2014 World Championships. For anyone who follows skating closely, you know that this event will be somewhat… less exciting to put it lightly because so many skaters opt out of the competition after an exhausting Olympic season.

Men

As expected, many of the top contenders have opted out of the World Championships this year, leaving the door wide open for reigning Olympic Champion, Yuzuru Hanyu, to strike gold on home ice. Yuzuru will be looking to improve on the Olympic performance of his LP, which was flawed but nevertheless was enough to win him the gold. Another competitor to look out for is Javier Fernandez who was skilled enough to win the Olympic medal but was kept off because he violated the zayak rule. Hopefully, he will have learned his lesson and will come out strong here.

Other contenders to look out for: Tatsuki Machida who’s had a strong season so far and also has home ice advantage. Maxim Kovtun, the windmill guy who beat Plushenko at Russian Nationals but didn’t go to the Olympics, therefore he’ll be more rested than the others and Han Yan, a young and talented newcomer. Jeremy Abbott may somehow prove that he can survive under pressure while Takahiko Kozuka, who is also well-rested may show us why he was once the World silver medalist.

Predictions:

Gold – Yuzuru Hanyu
Silver – Javier Fernandez
Bronze – Maxim Kovtun

Ladies

There has been quite a big buzz over the fact that Sotnikova isn’t going to Worlds and that the South Korean Olympic committee has filed an official complaint over the judging of the ladies competition. The big story then, is one of redemption by Mao Asada, who did not get the result we expected her to in Sochi. I hope that we’ll see her strong and that we can see her finish her career with a smile. Going against her is the young Russian phenom, Julia Lipnitskaia, who hopefully, has had less disturbing media attention since the Olympics and the Olympic bronze medalist Carolina Kostner. I have no doubt again that the judges will lowball Carolina’s PCS even if she’s the best performer with the best choreography this season.

A few other contenders to look out for: the rising star, Gracie Gold, who may actually be the Next American Ice Princess, Akiko Suzuki, who will undoubtedly be lowballed in PCS as always and Anna Pogorilaya, a Russian youngin who did well earlier in the season and will be well-rested for not going to Sochi.

Predictions:

Gold – Mao Asada
Silver – Julia Lipnitskaia
Bronze – Carolina Kostner

Pairs

The pairs competition will be a race for gold between Aliona Savchenko & Robin Szolkowy and Ksenia Stolbova & Fedor Klimov. The latter pair surprised us all but pitching in 3 solid performances in Sochi. S&S, I think, still has what it takes to win it but they’ll have to skate clean. As for the bronze medal, there are a few teams that have the technique, choreography and steadiness of mind and character that can take them to the podium and I think those teams are: Cheng Peng & Hao Zhang, Stefania Berton & Ondrej Hotarek, Meaghan Duhamel & Eric Radford and Kirsten Moore-Towers & Dylan Moscovitch. The bronze is going to be a tough call. As will be the gold. So here goes…

Predictions:

Gold – Aliona Savchenko & Robin Szolkowy
Silver – Ksenia Stolbova & Fedor Klimov
Bronze – Meaghan Duhamel & Eric Radford

I expect these predictions to be completely and totally wrong.

Ice Dance

The ice dance competition will be less exciting without the Davis & White and Virtue & Moir rivalry but this competition may end up  being the most revealing of them all. With them two dominating team gone, this competition may give us an idea of how the ice dance field will look like next season and for the next Olympic cycle.

Although I think that Nathalie Pechalat & Fabian Bourzat should’ve won the bronze at Sochi (I knew they wouldn’t because they’re not Russian), they may see themselves on the podium, just not at the top. That spot will probably belong to Elena Ilinykh & Nikita Katsalapov who will likely be the top Russian team for the next cycle. Whether they can maintain this top position is a completely different question – not all the competitions are held in Russia, you know. We may see two Russia teams on the podium if Ekaterina Bobrova & Dmitri Soloviev are well received in Saitama. However, we still need to keep an eye out for Igor Shpilband’s top team: Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte who have been skating strong all season. Kaitlyn Weaver & Andrew Poje will no longer be in the shadow of Virtue & Moir but they will likely be lowballed as they have been all season. However, I wanted to make this comment because Maria de Buenos Aires is a lovely FD and I want you to watch it.

Predictions:

Gold – Elena Illinykh & Nikita Katsalapov
Silver – Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte
Bronze – Nathalie Pechalat & Fabian Bourzat

I’m somewhat unused to this roster and so I’m guessing that these predictions will be laughably wrong. What are your predictions? Share them with me in the comments!

~The Rinkside Cafe

 

 

Worlds 2012: Pairs LP

I never seem to be able to catch a break these days. Just when things were calming down, I find myself with a gazillion things to do again. So much for a vacation. In any case, I’ll try to finish up the Worlds posts. All I have left to write about is the ladies’ competition. But before that, let’s take a look at the results of the pairs LP.

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Worlds 2012 – Ice Dance FD

I’m not sure if I can deal with the clusterfuck that is the ladies’ SP right now so I’ll leave you to read the delightful post by Morozombie, who is my new favourite figure skating blogger who seriously sounds like my darling friend and reader, Ay-sa.

As for dance, the results were a little more palatable though the results for bronze are seriously pissing me off. Let’s go through the final top 5, shall we?

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Money makes the Worlds go ’round…

… seems to be the general consensus. I thought of this…

The French Eurosport commentators didn’t like the music too much. I think they’re a bit out of touch with reality. Or they don’t really want to admit that it’s kind of true, unfortunately.

I’m kind of sick of posting continuous streams of sad news about Japan at this point. I’m not trying to be rude, I just wish that there was something I could do to make it all better. It’s a very depressing topic and yet, I don’t feel as if I should be posting anything remotely celebratory. Scott Russell posted an article on CBC that skaters like Charlie White seem to agree with. People are saying that $peedy (Ottavio Cinquanta) isn’t really looking at the skaters’ best interest or doesn’t really understand how figure skating really works because of his speed skating background. He also made a rude comment in this article on how you can’t always listen to skaters because some of them are minors. Um… foot in mouth much?

Some cities (Turin, Malmo, Lake Placid, Colorado Springs) have offered their venues for the World championships but it seems that many skaters understand the situation and they fully agree with Worlds being canceled or postponed while offering their deepest sympathies to the people of Japan. (See ontd_skating’s post on this.) Take that, $peedy!

In any case, I apologize for these posts. I’m really at a loss at what to blog about. If anyone has any ideas, please let me know and I’ll do my best.

~The Rinkside Cafe

P.S. My thoughts go to the brave people that are the Fukushima 50.

Worlds will be postponed or cancelled

So I’m sure all of you avid figure skating fans know already, the World championships this year may be postponed or canceled, according to the latest ISU statement. According to this article, the ISU is looking for another host city that would be willing and able to take the event (and garner enough revenue to offset the losses) into their hands on such short notice. However, PJ Kwong has expressed her views and thoughts on CBC as well as her personal blog about this. As for the skaters that were in Japan, they are as far as we know, safe, according to this article.

Although some fans are complaining, many skaters and skating officials have been very gracious in noting that although their season is up in the air at the moment, they understand the utter horrors and the devastation that is going on. With a nuclear crisis and scheduled power outages throughout the country, it’s hard to imagine that people could even think of watching figure skating on TV or live. Personally, I can’t begin to fathom the repercussions even after all of these immediate crises have been dealt with. Japan has never quite recovered from the bursting of the economic bubble in the 1990s and it’s hard to imagine what’s going to happen in the future. The next ten years of the international economy and politics will be interesting indeed…

In any case, for more ways to help with the Tsunami Relief, read this long tweet that was retweeted by Mirai Nagasu.

Praying for my friends (and everyone else) in Japan,

~The Rinkside Cafe

Update: According to this article, the ISU is looking at the options. Either Worlds will be cancelled or held in October.