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Thursday, March 27, 2014

A glorious day in Saitama

Savchenko/Szolkowy got their fifth world title with a lovely skate, just as we'd hoped.

Mao broke the world record and was amazing in doing so.

Carolina Kostner was sublime and is within striking distance of Mao.

Akiko was lovely and got a personal best.

I cannot be expected to pay attention to anyone else or to post coherently after all these great skates.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Amodio out of 2014 Worlds

His call? The French Federation's idea? Either way, Florent Amodio joins the list of skaters who will not be competing in Saitama next week. Reports in the French press indicate that Amodio feels that he needs to recover from a difficult and disappointing season before he can compete successfully again. Of course, the last time a French skater had a disappointing Olympic experience, things went much better at Worlds...

But history can't always repeat itself. With Joubert done and no other options, Chafik Bessghier will be the lone French man to compete at Worlds this year. He is also making his Worlds debut, due to the idiotic decision not to use all three spots that France had in 2013. Can he make the top ten and keep two spots for 2015? It's doubtful, but maybe he will rise to the occasion.

As for Amodio, I wish him well, and hope that he will finally find a coach and choreographer who will allow him to realize his potential - because really, this past Olympic quad has mostly been a sad waste of a great talent.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The 2014 Worlds wishlist

The Olympics were supposed to be the end of an era, with many top skaters calling it a career after Sochi. As it turns out, however, quite a few of the old timers seem to be having a harder time saying goodbye than originally anticipated, and will be competing in Saitama next week. Throw in all the storylines to follow for the next few years and the up and coming skaters who'll be trying to make their move, and it's shaping up to be an exciting competition. Hopefully Eurosport will allow us to watch at least some of it... and here's what we'd like to see:

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Ice dance: the future is (almost) now

Skate Canada and the USFSA have announced their entries for 2014 Worlds, and it's now confirmed that both Davis/White and Virtue/Moir will be sitting this one out. This means that for the first time since 2004 - when 6.0 was still in use! - there will be no Canton-based teams on the podium, and we will have our first brand-new World Champions since 2009. I think this is good news for skating fans.

Davis/White and Virtue/Moir have accomplished everything possible in ice dance: Olympic gold medals, world titles, world records, multiple wins in national and international competition... actually, Virtue/Moir are missing one major title - the Grand Prix Final - but going to Worlds wouldn't help them get it. So the stage is now set for some movement in the upper ranks, and the field seems wide open. Very exciting! So what happens now?