2017-2018 Top Senior Dance US Qualifying Scores

Short Dance

  1. Shibutani/Shibutani: 82.33 (US Nationals)
  2. Hubbell/Donohue: 79.10 (US Nationals)
  3. Chock/Bates: 77.61 (US Nationals)
  4. Hawayek/Baker: 73.18 (US Nationals)
  5. Parsons/Parsons: 72.69 (US Nationals)
  6. McNamara/CarpenteR: 69.16 (US Nationals)
  7. Pogrebinsky/Benoit: 66.41 (US Nationals)
  8. Aldridge/Eaton: 61.21 (US Nationals)
  9. Biechler/Dodge: 59.80 (Eastern Sectionals)
  10. Manta/Johnson: 58.29 (US Nationals)

Free Dance

  1. Chock/Bates: 118.99 (US Nationals)
  2. Hubbell/Donohue: 118.02 (US Nationals)
  3. Shibutani/Shibutani: 114.60 (US Nationals)
  4. Hawayek/Baker: 114.43 (US Nationals)
  5. McNamara/Carpenter: 106.03 (US Nationals)
  6. Parsons/Parsons: 103.38 (US Nationals)
  7. Pogrebinsky/Benoit: 101.57 (US Nationals)
  8. Aldridge/Eaton: 92.72 (US Nationals)
  9. Manta/Johnson: 92.71 (US Nationals)
  10. Biechler/Dodge: 89.36 (Eastern Sectionals)

Total

  1. Hubbell/Donohue: 197.12 (US Nationals)
  2. Shibutani/Shibutani: 196.60 (US Nationals)
  3. Chock/Bates: 196.60 (US Nationals)
  4. Hawayek/Baker: 187.61 (US Nationals)
  5. Parsons/Parsons: 176.07 (US Nationals)
  6. McNamara/Carpenter: 175.19 (US Nationals)
  7. Pogrebinsky/Benoit: 167.98 (US Nationals)
  8. Aldridge/Eaton: 153.93 (US Nationals)
  9. Manta/Johnson: 151.00 (US Nationals)
  10. Biechler/Dodge: 149.18 (Eastern Sectionals)
  11. Aldridge/Eaton: 143.89 (Midwestern Sectionals)
  12. Manta/Johnson: 138.99 (Midwestern Sectionals)
  13. Biechler/Dodge: 136.37 (US Nationals)
  14. Reynolds/Reynolds: 119.05 (Eastern Sectionals)
  15. Reynolds/Reynolds: 110.92 (US Nationals)
  16. Klopstock/Schedl: 100.43 (Eastern Sectionals)
  17. Klopstock/Schedl: 89.28 (US Nationals)
  18. Bain/Altukhov: 79.42 (US Nationals)

2018 US Nationals Senior Free Dance

GROUP 1

Klopstock/Schedl: 28.95 TES + 25.17 PCS -2.00 = 52.12  Total: 89.28

  • I like the placement of the twizzles with the music but they lost sync with each other
  • Pretty basic lift with some awkward change into the second position
  • They botched the transition in their dance spin and had a moment where they stood there
  • He bobbles on a turn in their serpentine step sequence
  • Her shoulders just seem to be a bit lifted and tight throughout this program
  • Rotational lift a bit clunky on the transition out and he falls getting into the next sequence
  • I’d like to see them develop a wider range of emotions in telling this story
  • He falls again at the end of their diagonal step sequence
  • Nice choreographic lift to end the program
  • They earned Level 4 on their lifts but only Level 1 on both step sequences
  • They earned mostly negative GOEs

Bain/Altukhov: 28.89 TES + 20.36 PCS -1.00 = 48.25 Total: 79.42 and into 2nd place

  • Exogenesis is such a subtle piece of music and really requires a level of performance that takes years to achieve and is not what I would have picked for a first year partnership
  • Off on their twizzles through all the rotations and the spacing kept changing
  • Nice opening straight-line lift with him in a squat position
  • You can see the concentration written all over her face and her entire upper body is tight
  • In the changes of hold she is really reaching for him and grabbing tight in the transitions instead of letting it flow
  • A few places where they seem to either be too far apart or too close to each other in the step sequence
  • This music is really just making their skating seem slow and clunky
  • They also need to work on their connection with each other as I don’t think she’s looked at him once this entire program
  • Some nice positions in the dance spin but almost swing to a stop a the end and a bobble
  • Level 4 twizzles, rotational lift
  • Basic level on their circular step sequence and Level 1 on diagonal step sequence

Reynolds/Reynolds: 38.19 TES + 31.81 PCS = 70.00  Total: 110.92 and into 1st place

  • Cool hydroblade lift with her in a haircutter position
  • Pretty good twizzles, just off on the last rotation of the third set
  • Nice slid entry into their dance spin; could use a bit more stretch through the positions
  • The program seems a bit slow though the middle putting both step sequences back to back
  • Some really nice transitions in and out of the lifts for them
  • They’ve really come a long way and have improved each year
  • Level 4 lifts, twizzles, Level 1 on their step sequences
  • Positive GOEs on all but one element

Biechler/Dodge: 44.01 TES + 37.83 PCS = 81.84  Total: 137.37 and into 1st place

  • Nice twizzles and I love the arm changes within the sequences
  • Love the lift around his head and then a pop to a cradle catch
  • Love the choreographic spin in this program
  • Nice placement of the step sequence with the music
  • Nice twist jump into a stationary rotational lift
  • She loses her balance in the step sequence and steps out but does not fall
  • Really enjoyed the fierceness they brought to the program and the way they attacked the step sequences
  • Looks like her blade might not be on her skate properly
  • Level 4 twizzles, spin, lifts
  • Level 1 step sequence and only negative GOE

 

GROUP 2

Pogrebinsky/Benoit: 54.61 TES + 46.96 PCS = 101.57 Total: 167.98 and into 1st place

  • Great positions from her in the dance spin
  • Great leaned back spread eagle from him in the curve lift
  • Great ease and connection from them in the first step sequence really carrying the theme of the program through
  • Good timing through all of their twizzles
  • Great step up to a stationary rotational lift
  • They truly have some stunning lift positions including the rotational lift behind his back in a full split
  • This program truly plays to the great chemistry they have as a team and really shows off all of their strengths
  • Level 4 on everything but the serpentine step sequence and all positive GOEs

Aldridge/Eaton: 47.51 TES + 45.21 PCS = 92.72  Total: 153.93 and itno 2nd place

  • Off on the timing in their twizzles
  • Great speed going into their step sequence and I love how they go into it from a behind the back position
  • Really great transition into their rotational lift just coming out of nowhere
  • I love the transitional movement of him pulling her into a camel spin, skating away, and then coming back and grabbing her foot
  • Looks like they might have had some difficult in their second lift and maybe didn’t quite get into their planned position
  • Such a fun classic program that really suited their strengths and showed why they had so much success as a team
  • Level 4 lifts, diagonal step sequence with all positive GOEs

Manta/Johnson: 50.07 TES + 42.64 PCS = 92.71 Total: 151.00 and into 3rd place

  • Level 4 lift, spin, twizzles, with all positive GOEs

McNamara/Carpenter: 55.89 TES + 50.14 PCS = 106.03 Total:  175.19 and into 1st place

  • Really nice straight-line lift with him skating backward on one leg
  • They have the right fire and passion for a tango
  • You see the effort in the program here in places and some of the transitions are more apparent then they should be
  • Their serpentine step sequence just oozes tango choreography in all the little details
  • There are places where it looks like choreography and acting and doesn’t feel genuine, but part of that is just developing more maturity
  • Lots of great details in that program and really well done from them
  • Level 4 on their lifts, twizzles, and spin and all positive GOEs

 

GROUP 3

Parsons/Parsons: 53.53 TES + 49.85 PCS = 103.38 Total: 176.07 and into 1st place

  • Interesting choreographic spin
  • Straight line lift with him on one leg in a squat and her reaching out her legs behind her
  • I love that their step sequence goes right into the spin so seamlessly
  • Like McNamara and Carpenter there is some visible effort here and some of their moves look like choreography…something they’ll get better at with time
  • Lost their unison on the third twizzles
  • Great final lift with him in a huge lean while she leans back over the ice
  • Level 4 on their lifts and spin, with all positive GOEs

Hawayek/Baker: 61.06 TES + 53.37 PCS = 114.43 Total: 187.61 and into 1st place

  • The opening of this program is so beautiful with great lines and such great connection between them
  • Love these twizzles on the crescendo
  • Love how she just steps right up into that lift and it’s so effortless in and out…maybe not the most acrobatic but the simplicity really does set it apart
  • They really take every detail into consideration in building the step sequence with the build of the music
  • Great dip rotational lift
  • You really cannot take your eyes off her in this program; everything is so elegant and so pure
  • There is just such job, beauty and incredible connection in this program that is just stunning
  • Level 4 on everything with all positive GOEs

Shibutani/Shibutani: 57.26 TES + 57.34 PCS = 114.60 Total: 196.93 and into 1st place

  • Great transition out of the spin ducking under his arm
  • Such long, deep edges in the step sequence
  • Love the first lift and the effortless changes in position
  • Really nice twizzles after a little nod to Fix You
  • Great fast position changes in the rotational spin right on the music
  • She stumbled in the second step sequence but didn’t go down…that’s going to effect their levels and GOEs
  • They had a lead coming into this but that could be the difference
  • Love the two choreographic moves at the end of this program
  • Technically it was very good but it didn’t move me the way that Hawayek and Baker’s did
  • Level 4 on everything but the step sequences with all positive GOEs

Hubbell/Donohue: 59.77 TES + 58.25 PCS = 118.02 Total: 197.12 and into 1st place

  • Super difficult twizzles with lots of things happening in each set, maybe a slight loss of unison
  • Super slick step sequence
  • Love the twist and backward entry for him into the curve lift
  • Everything about this program is so well thought out and so well placed in the music
  • There is so much passion and fire in this program and it all feels so real and so genuine
  • You truly cannot look away from this program and you do not see the elements at all…they are so seamlessly woven into the choreography
  • Level 4 on everything except diagonal step sequence and spin with all positive GOEs

Chock/Bates: 61.39 TES + 57.60 PCS = 118.99 Total: 196.60 and into 3rd place

  • Love the level changes in the opening stationary lift
  • Nice twizzles
  • A few little moments of effort in the spin changes
  • Great choreographic moments at the end of the piece
  • I couldn’t help but be transfixed by that and it truly was very uplifting and beautiful
  • Level 4 on lifts, twizzles, spin, diagonal step sequence
Place Start Name Short Dance Free Dance Total Score
Place Score Place Score
1 12 Madison Hubbell, Lansing SC
Zachary Donohue, Lansing SC
2 79.10 2 118.02 197.12
2 11 Maia Shibutani, SC of New York
Alex Shibutani, SC of New York
1 82.33 3 114.60 196.93
3 13 Madison Chock, All Year FSC
Evan Bates, Ann Arbor FSC
3 77.61 1 118.99 196.60
4 10 Kaitlin Hawayek, Detroit SC
Jean-Luc Baker, Seattle SC
4 73.18 4 114.43 187.61
5 9 Rachel Parsons, Washington FSC
Michael Parsons, Washington FSC
5 72.69 6 103.38 176.07
6 8 Lorraine McNamara, Peninsula SC
Quinn Carpenter, Washington FSC
6 69.16 5 106.03 175.19
7 5 Elliana Pogrebinsky, Peninsula SC
Alex Benoit, Skokie Valley SC
7 66.41 7 101.57 167.98
8 6 Alexandra Aldridge, Detroit SC
Daniel Eaton, Ann Arbor FSC
8 61.21 8 92.72 153.93
9 7 Karina Manta, Coyotes SC of Arizona
Joseph Johnson, Broadmoor SC
9 58.29 9 92.71 151.00
10 4 Julia Biechler, SC of Wilmington
Damian Dodge, IceWorks SC
10 54.53 10 81.84 136.37
11 3 Elicia Reynolds, Ice Line FSC
Stephen Reynolds, Ice Line FSC
11 40.92 11 70.00 110.92
12 1 Cassidy Klopstock, Centennial 7k SC
Jacob Schedl, University of Delaware FSC
12 37.16 12 52.12 89.28
13 2 Ashley Bain, North Jersey FSC
Oleg Altukhov, North County FSC
13 31.17 13 48.25 79.42

2018 US Nationals Senior Short Dance

GROUP 1

Manta/Johnson: 58.29

  • Just a bit stiff though the rhumba
  • Off on the timing and a few slight slips in the non touching step sequence
  • They don’t quite have the synchronicity of the top teams with little details like having slightly different arms
  • Twizzles were in sync
  • Overall this program could have a lot more Latin feel and fire to it
  • Level 4 on twizzles, rhumba, and lift
  • Level 3 on partial and non touching step sequence

Bain/Altukhov: -1.00 = 31.17 and into 2nd place

  • They just don’t seem comfortable with each other as the touches seem very forced
  • Slow, bit awkward entry to their lift
  • A bit stiff and tentative on the rhumba and the nerves really show on her face
  • Slow and really looking like they’re fighting the ice to keep moving forward
  • He definitely is the stronger performer of the pair and has some nice facials through the non touching step sequence
  • Pretty good timing through the non touching step sequence
  • Really off on the timing of the twizzles and she seemed to have a bit of trouble staying in a straight line
  • They received negative GOEs on every element
  • Level 4 on their lift, Level 3 twizzles
  • Level 1 on all the step sequences

Aldridge/Eaton: 61.21 and into 1st place

  • Love the Latin flavor at the opening of the program although I would like to see her legs a little tighter together
  • Nice speed through the Rhumba and nice long leg lines
  • Cool stretch into their lift with a great arabesque line from her into the exit
  • Nice changes of hold in the partial step sequence, long edges, use of arms and lots of expressive upper body positions from her
  • Pretty good synchronization on the twizzles
  • Love the tight spacing between them and the crossing of patterns in the non touching step sequence
  • Really nice comeback performance for them

McNamara/Carpenter: 36.98 TES + 32.18 PCS = 69.16 and into 1st place

  • This team truly performs from the second they take the ice
  • Good speed through the Rhumba but not a lot of freedom through the hold and upper body
  • A lot more freedom through the partial step sequence with long curves and use of the arms and upper body
  • Cartwheel around to their lift
  • I would have liked to see more of a choreographic change or a cleaner change in the music to go from the slow music to the fast; it seemed a bit abrupt
  • They still just look a bit junior and it looks like choreography and not effortless
  • Level 4 twizzles and lift, Level 3 rhumba and non touching step sequence

 

GROUP 2

Hawayek/Baker: 39.38 TES + 33.80 PCS = 73.18 and into 1st place

  • I love the ombre of her skirt from red to an electric pink
  • Huge pattern on the non touching step sequence with nice long edges but she looks a bit tentative in her face
  • Very in sync on the rhumba and very well timed to the music
  • Great Latin choreography from them in the transition
  • Nice secure transitions of holds in the partial step sequence
  • Set up to an arch over the ice; the second position with her arched back while sitting seems to not have quite enough time and is a bit awkward
  • She’s starting to come alive a bit after the twizzles
  • Nice clean performance, but I wish they had performed it a bit more; it was obvious they were being very cautious and really thinking through the program
  • All positive GOEs
  • Level 4 on everything except midline step sequence which earned Level 3

Chock/Bates: 39.95 TES + 37.66 PCS = 77.61 and into 1st place

  • Good timing on the twizzles
  • I love the look of her costume which matches a traditional Latin ballroom dress although the long fringe makes me nervous!
  • Great transitions and variety of holds in the partial step sequence
  • Really nice leg lines in the Rhumba
  • Twist around to a cool split position on his legs; very interesting, different lift
  • Very clean non touching step sequence
  • Level 4 on everything but the partial step sequence with positive GOEs on everything

Reynolds/Reynolds: 22.75 TES + 20.17 PCS -2.00 = 40.92 and into 6th place

  • The remixed version of this song almost sounds like it’s skipping and made it a bit hard to judge the rhumba against the music
  • Not a lot of security in the changes of holds in the partial step sequence and very stiff in the upper body
  • She falls on the twizzles and they only complete one set
  • Neat lift with her rotating all the way around his neck without him using any hands
  • They could do more to add some Latin flavor to their choreography as right now it almost looks like it could go with any music
  • Two negative GOEs
  • Level 4 on their lift and Level 3 on the partial step sequence

Hubbell/Donohue: 40.96 TES + 38.14 PCS = 79.10 and into 1st place

  • So sharp and crisp at the beginning of this program
  • Great non touching step sequence with the Latin feel throughout, great musicality and very nice timing and spacing
  • Huge pattern on the Rhumba
  • Really nice partial step sequence with some interesting hold changes
  • Curve lift with her on his blade
  • He had a little bobble on the third set of twizzles really just noticeable by his hands changing
  • Everything about that program was cool and confident and just so effortless
  • Level 3 rhumba and partial step sequence, Level 4 on everything else, all positive GOEs

ICE RESURFACING

GROUP 3

Biechler/Dodge: 29.37 TES + 25.16 PCS = 54.53 and into 7th place

  • Partial step sequence could be faster or have deeper edges
  • A few good attempts at Latin moments in the non touching step sequence but it just needs a bit more commitment and more hips
  • Rotational lift with her up around his shoulders and set down exit
  • Level 4 twizzles and lift, Level 3 partial and midline step sequence
  • Negative GOE on the rhumba

Klopstock/Schedl: TES + PCS = 37.16 and into 9th place

  • Pretty good comfort in the holds in the partial step sequence with nice long curves
  • I’d like to see them really loosen up the upper body a bit to really sell this program
  • Pretty tight in the Rhumba through the entire upper body for both of them
  • I’d like to see a bit more variety of expressions, instead of the same expression held throughout to give the program a more mature feel
  • So neat to see Cannuscio and McManus in the Kiss and Cry as coaches this year!

Parsons/Parsons: 39.89 TES + 32.80 PCS = 72.69 and into 4th place

  • Great speed into their Rhumba ; her free arm seems a bit rehearsed in places and I’d like to see it feel a bit more natural
  • Great timing on their non touching step sequence, good musicality, and some really risk taking moves with deep leans over the ice
  • A few of their transitional movements they could really draw out and hold for a bit more impact but some of that comes with time
  • Cartwheel in and out of their lift
  • Maybe just a hair off on their timing on the first set of twizzles
  • Very cool ending with the finger spin
  • They did a great job not looking like a junior team and truly showing they belong in the senior ranks
  • All positive GOEs and everything Level 4 except for the non touching step sequence that earned Level 3

Shibutani/Shibutani: 43.64 TES + 38.69 PCS = 82.33 and into 1st place

  • Great accents to start their program
  • Such long curves and perfectly in sync in the Rhumba; it truly just glides across the ice and looks effortless
  • She really uses her full arm in the partial step sequence all the way from the shoulder
  • I love the twizzles perfectly timed to the counting and then increasing in speed through the 2nd and 3rd sets
  • Great moment in the middle of their non touching step sequence that truly felt like Latin Ballroom
  • They have such a feel for their music and hit every accent perfectly
  • One arm pull up backwards to a rotational lift
  • Standing ovation for their program
  • Everything about them is so elegant, effortless, and flawless
  • In a very deep US field they truly do find a way to set themselves apart
  • All positive GOEs and all Level 4s

Pogrebinsky/Benoit: 35.48 TES + 30.93 PCS = 66.41 and into 7th place

  • Long lines on the Rhumba but if feels a bit slow and cautious
  • A lot more confidence in the partial step sequence
  • Great full split position from her in the lift with a nice turn out of it
  • Really nice unison though the first twizzles, but off through the others
  • Lefel 4 lift, twizzles
  • Level 3 on everything else
Place Start Name Score
1 12 Maia Shibutani, SC of New York
Alex Shibutani, SC of New York
82.33
2 8 Madison Hubbell, Lansing SC
Zachary Donohue, Lansing SC
79.10
3 6 Madison Chock, All Year FSC
Evan Bates, Ann Arbor FSC
77.61
4 5 Kaitlin Hawayek, Detroit SC
Jean-Luc Baker, Seattle SC
73.18
5 11 Rachel Parsons, Washington FSC
Michael Parsons, Washington FSC
72.69
6 4 Lorraine McNamara, Peninsula SC
Quinn Carpenter, Washington FSC
69.16
7 13 Elliana Pogrebinsky, Peninsula SC
Alex Benoit, Skokie Valley SC
66.41
8 3 Alexandra Aldridge, Detroit SC
Daniel Eaton, Ann Arbor FSC
61.21
9 1 Karina Manta, Coyotes SC of Arizona
Joseph Johnson, Broadmoor SC
58.29
10 9 Julia Biechler, SC of Wilmington
Damian Dodge, IceWorks SC
54.53
11 7 Elicia Reynolds, Ice Line FSC
Stephen Reynolds, Ice Line FSC
40.92
12 10 Cassidy Klopstock, Centennial 7k SC
Jacob Schedl, University of Delaware FSC
37.16
13 2 Ashley Bain, North Jersey FSC
Oleg Altukhov, North County FSC
31.17

2018 US Nationals Senior Dance Preview

Three teams qualified for the Grand Prix Final for the third year in a row.  This is the one discipline where the US is consistently a medal threat and is the best bet for the US at the Olympics.

As a group, they have 43 national medals.  They have won five Worlds medals, 10 Four Continents medals, and eight World Junior Medals.  They won 7 Grand Prix medals and 6 Challenger Series medals this season.  The 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 7th, 10th place finishers from last season will be competing here.  Only the 1st, 3rd, 12th place finishers from last year’s junior event moved up.  The short dance will be held on Friday, January 5th with the free dance on Saturday, January 6th.

To be competitive internationally, these teams need at least 71 points in the short dance, 107 points in the free dance, and 177 points overall.
The Shibutanis have the 3rd best total score internationally, set at Skate America.  They have consistent earned Level 4s on most of the elements in the short dance, finally achieving Level 4 on their non-touching step sequence at the Grand Prix Final, but dropping their Rhumba from a Level 2 to Level 4.  In the free dance, they have hit Level 4s on everything except for their step sequences which have been earning Level 3.  The only anomaly was their second step sequence earning a Level 2 at the Grand Prix Final.
Hubbell and Donohue have the 5th best score internationally, but they have set personal best segment scores at different competitions.  They have earned a Level 4 on every element of their short dance, but they’ve been vacillating between Level 3 and Level 4 on individual elements between events and have never earned Level 4 on everything.  In their free dance, they’ve been hitting Level 4 on their first step sequence, but have lost a level on one random element elsewhere in the program, dropping their spin to Level 3 at NHK Trophy and their last lift to Level 3 at the Grand Prix Final.
Chock and Bates have the 6th best score internationally, set at the Grand Prix Final.  They have been bringing their levels up throughout the season, achieving a Level 4 on their Rhumba at the Grand Prix Final.  They have never earned a Level 4 on the partial step sequence or the non touching step sequence.  In the free dance, they’ve been fairly consistent with achieving Level 4s on everything except for their step sequences.
While this is the deepest and most competitive discipline in the US it is also fairly predictable.  The Shibutanis, Chock and Bates, and Hubbell and Donohue have dominated the scene for the last 2.5 years and it would be a major upset if any other team were to steal one of the top three spots.  But there are several teams vying for that final spot on the podium and the placement of the top three teams is not set in stone.
Hawayek/Baker, McNamara/Carpenter and Parsons/Parsons are all former World Junior Champions and none have medaled on the Grand Prix this season.  Hawayek and Baker have been up in the senior ranks the longest and have the most experience, but they’ve also made fluke errors.  Pogrebinsky/Benoit are the reigning Pewter Medalists, landing on the podium in their first season as seniors last year.
Chock and Bates look like they might have trouble holding on to their silver medal this year.  They set a season’s best score at the Grand Prix Final where the Shibutanis and Hubbell/Donohue did not have their best events, yet they still finished behind both teams.  They have had problems hitting their Levels, including never achieving a Level 4 on some of their elements this season.  Their best technical score in the short dance is behind Hubbell and Donohue and the Shibutani’s worst score from the season, and they don’t fare much better in the other areas.
The Shibutani’s have three of the top five short dance TES scores, three of the top five short dance PCS scores, one top five free dance TES score, and three top five free dance PCS scores, putting 10 of their 12 possible scores in the top 5 for the US for the season.
Hubbell and Donohue have two of the top five short dance TES scores, one top five short dance PCS score, three top five free dance TES scores, and one top five free dance PCS scores, giving them a total of 7 top five scores.
Chock and Bates have one top five short dance PCS score, one top five free dance TES score, and one top five free dance PCS score, giving them 3 top five scores.
Even with their worst performance of the season, the Shibutanis managed to come out ahead, and their short program has been their biggest strength this season.  Hubbell and Donohue have put out stronger free dances, so it is entirely possible to see them split the two segments.  Keys to this event are going to be the Shibutanis’s lead after the short dance and if anyone can upgrade to Level 4 step sequences in either program.
Top 10 TES Scores, Short Dance
Shibutani/Shibutani: 41.30 (SA)
Shibutani/Shibutani: 40.85 (GPF)
Hubbell/Donohue: 40.57 (SC)
Hubbell/Donohue: 40.30 (NHK)
Shibutani/Shibutani: 40.23 (RC)
Hubbell/Donohue: 38.22 (GPF)
Chock/Bates: 38.08 (GPF)
Chock/Bates: 37.07 (IDF)
Chock/Bates: 35.97 (CoC)
McNamara/Carpenter: 34.30 (CoC)
Top 10 PCS Scores, Short Dance
Shibutani/Shibutani: 37.88 (SA)
Shibutani/Shibutani: 37.24 (GPF)
Shibutani/Shibutani: 37.07 (RC)
Chock/Bates: 36.69 (CoC)
Hubbell/Donohue: 36.59 (GPF)
Hubbell/Donohue: 36.51 (SC)
Chock/Bates: 36.48 (IDF)
Chock/Bates: 36.28 (GPF)
Hubbell/Donohue: 36.01 (NHK)
Hawayek/Baker: 31.51 (SA)
Top 10 TES Scores, Free Dance
Shibutani/Shibutani: 57.95 (SA)
Hubbell/Donohue: 57.64 (NHK)
Hubbell/Donohue: 57.47 (SC)
Hubbell/Donohue: 57.42 (GPF)
Chock/Bates: 57.25 (GPF)
Chock/Bates: 56.27 (CoC)
Shibutani/Shibutani: 56.01 (RC)
Shibutani/Shibutani: 54.15 (GPF)
Chock/Bates: 53.47 (IDF)
Hawayek/Baker: 53.05 (SC)
Top 10 PCS Scores, Free Dance
Shibutani/Shibutani: 57.12 (SA)
Shibutani/Shibutani: 55.93 (RC)
Hubbell/Donohue: 55.88 (SC)
Shibutani/Shibutani: 55.76 (GPF)
Chock/Bates: 55.57 (CoC)
Chock/Bates: 55.54 (GPF)
Hubbell/Donohue: 55.17 (GPF)
Chock/Bates: 54.83 (IDF)
Hubbell/Donohue: 54.40 (NHK)
Hawayek/Baker: 49.05 (SC)

My podium predictions:

Gold: Shibutani/Shibutani

Silver: Hubbell/Donohue

Bronze: Chock/Bates

Pewter: Hawayek/Baker

 

Bios of the competitors:

Aldridge/Eaton: She is 23 and represents the Detroit Skating Club he is 25 and represents the Ann Arbor Figure Skating Club.  They are the 2014 Four Continents Bronze Medalists and 2012 and 2013 World Junior Bronze Medalists.  They finished 6th in 2015, 5th in 2014, are the 2013 Junior Champions, 2012 Junior Champions, finished 5th in juniors in 2011 and are the 2010 Novice Champions.  They won gold at Midwestern Sectionals to qualify for nationals.

Bain/Altukhov

Biechler/Dodge: She is 19 and represents the Skating Club of Wilmington and he is 23 and represents the Peninsula Skating Club.  They finished 8th at the US International Figure Skating Classic and 17th at Finlandia Trophy.  They placed 7th last season, 5th as juniors in 2016, 8th at juniors in 2015, 7th as juniors in 2014 and 9th as juniors in 2013.

Chock/Bates: She is 25 and represents the All Year Figure Skating Club and he is 28 and represents the Ann Arbor Figure Skating Club.  They finished 7th at Worlds and are the reigning Four Continents Bronze Medalists.  They won silver at Cup of China and silver at Internationaux de France to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where they placed 5th.  They are the 2015 World Silver Medalists, 2016 World Bronze Medalists, 2015 and 2016 Four Continents Silver Medalists, and 2013 Four Continents Bronze Medalists.  They are the reigning Silver Medalists, 2016 Silver Medalists, 2015 Champions, 2014 Silver Medalists, 2013 Silver Medalists and finished 5th in 2012.  They have the 8th best short program, 5th best free skate, and 6th best total scores internationally.

Hawayek/Baker: She is 21 and represents the Detroit Skating Club and he is 24 and represents the Seattle Skating Club.  They finished 4th at Skate Canada and 5th at Skate America.  They won silver at the US Figure Skating Classic and bronze at Golden Spin of Zagreb.  They are the 2014 World Junior Champions.  They finished 5th last season, 5th in 2016, are the 2015 Pewter Medalists, 2014 Junior Champions and 2013 Junior Silver Medalists.

Hubbell/Donohue: She is 26 and he is 27 and they represent the Lansing Skating Club.  They placed 9th at Worlds and 4th at Four Continents last season.  They won bronze at Skate Canada and silver at NHK Trophy to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where they placed 4th.  They won gold at the US International Classic.  They are the 2014 Four Continents Champions.  They are the reigning Bronze Medalists, 2016 Bronze Medalists, 2015 Bronze Medalists, 2014 Pewter Medalists, 2013 Pewter Medalists and 2012 Bronze Medalists.  They have the 6th best short program, 4th best free skate, and 5th best total scores internationally.

Klopstock/Schedl: She represents the Centennial 7k Skating Club and he represents the University of Delaware Figure Skating Club.  They finished 12th as juniors last season.  They won bronze at Eastern Sectionals to qualify for nationals.

Manta/Johnson: She is 21 and represents the Coyotes Skating Club of Arizona and he is 23 and represents the Broadmoor Skating Club.  They placed 14th at Nebelhorn Trophy.  They finished 8th last season, 7th in 2016, and 10th as juniors in 2015.

McNamara/Carpenter: She is 18 and represents the Peninsula Skating Club and he is 21 and represents the Washington Figure Skating Club.  They placed 7th at Junior Worlds last season.  They placed 5th at Cup of China.  They finished 5th at the Autumn Classic International, 8th at Finlandia Trophy, and won silver at Warsaw Cup.  They are the 2016 World Junior Champions and 2015 World Junior Silver Medalists.  They are the reigning Junior Bronze Medalists, 2015 and 2016 Junior Champions, 2014 Junior Silver Medalists, 2013 Junior Bronze Medalists, 2012 Junior Bronze Medalists, finished 9th in Junior in 2011, 6th in Novice in 2010, are the 2009 Intermediate Pewter Medalists and 2008 Juvenile Pewter Medalists.

Parsons/Parsons: She is 20 and he is 22 and they represent the Washington Figure Skating Club.  They are the reigning World Junior Champions.  They placed 7th at Rostelecom Cup and 9th at Skate America.  They won silver at Ondrej Nepela Trophy and finished 8th at Golden Spin of Zagreb.  They are the 2016 World Junior Silver Medalists.  They are the reigning Junior Champions, 2016 Junior Silver Medalists, 2015 Junior Silver Medalists, 2014 Junior Bronze Medalists, 2012 Junior Pewter Medalists and 2011 Novice Champions.

Pogrebinsky/Benoit: She is 19 represents the Peninsula Skating Club and he is 22 and represents the Skokie Valley Skating Club.  They placed 7th at Cup of China and 7th at Internationaux de France.  They won bronze at Tallinn Trophy.  They are the reigning Pewter Medalists, 2016 Junior Bronze Medalists and 2015 Junior Bronze Medalists.

Reynolds/Reynolds: She is 27 and he is 24 and they represent the IceWorks Skating Club.  They finished 10th last season, 13th in 2016, 11th in 2015, and 14th in 2014.

Shibutani/Shibutani: She is 23 and he is 26 and they represent the Skating Club of New York.  They are the reigning World Bronze Medalists and reigning Four Continents Silver Medalists.  They won gold at Rostelecom Cup and gold at Skate America to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where they won bronze.  They are the 2016 World Silver Medalists, 2011 World Bronze Medalists, 2016 Four Continents Champions, 2011 Four Continents Silver Medalists, 2015 Four Continents Bronze Medalists, and 2009 World Junior Silver Medalists.  They are the reigning Champions, 2016 Champions, 2015 Silver Medalists, 2014 Bronze Medalists, 2013 Bronze Medalists, 2012 Silver Medalists, 2011 Silver Medalists, 2010 Junior Champions, 2009 Junior Silver Medalists, 2008 Junior Pewter Medalists, 2007 Novice Champions, 2006 Intermediate Champions and 2005 Juvenile Silver Medalists.  They have the 3rd best short dance, 3rd best free dance, and 3rd best total scores internationally.

Short Dance

  1. Virtue/Moir, CAN: 82.68 (Skate Canada)
  2. Papadakis/Cizeron, FRA: 82.07 (Grand Prix Final)
  3. Shibutani/Shibutani, USA: 79.18 (Skate America)

Free Dance

  1. Papadakis/Cizeron, FRA: 120.58 (Internationaux de France)
  2. Virtue/Moir, CAN: 118.33 (Grand Prix Final)
  3. Shibutani/Shibutani, USA: 115.07 (Skate America)

Total (one score per team listed)

  1. Papadakis/Cizeron, FRA: 202.16 (Grand Prix Final)
  2. Virtue/Moir, CAN: 199.86 (Skate Canada/Grand Prix Final)
  3. Shibutani/Shibutani, USA: 194.25 (Skate America)

 

2017 Internationaux de France Dance Results

Short Dance

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON FRA 81.40 42.46 38.94 9.68 9.57 9.89 9.68 9.86 0.00 #9
2 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES USA 73.55 37.07 36.48 9.07 8.96 9.18 9.18 9.21 0.00 #10
3 Alexandra STEPANOVA / Ivan BUKIN RUS 70.02 35.56 34.46 8.57 8.43 8.75 8.61 8.71 0.00 #6
4 Charlene GUIGNARD / Marco FABBRI ITA 69.73 36.24 33.49 8.39 8.21 8.36 8.36 8.54 0.00 #7
5 Kaitlyn WEAVER / Andrew POJE CAN 68.94 32.69 36.25 9.11 8.93 8.93 9.21 9.14 0.00 #8
6 Elliana POGREBINSKY / Alex BENOIT USA 60.64 31.26 29.38 7.36 7.21 7.43 7.36 7.36 0.00 #4
7 Alla LOBODA / Pavel DROZD RUS 60.43 30.22 30.21 7.61 7.36 7.64 7.54 7.61 0.00 #5
8 Angelique ABACHKINA / Louis THAURON FRA 59.81 31.05 28.76 7.14 6.89 7.39 7.21 7.32 0.00 #2
9 Natalia KALISZEK / Maksym SPODYRIEV POL 58.58 29.30 29.28 7.32 7.14 7.32 7.39 7.43 0.00 #3
10 Lorenza ALESSANDRINI / Pierre SOUQUET FRA 54.07 28.53 26.54 6.79 6.50 6.64 6.68 6.57 1.00 #1

Free Dance

 Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON FRA 120.58 61.52 59.06 9.75 9.64 9.93 9.89 10.00 0.00 #9
2 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES USA 108.30 53.47 54.83 9.07 9.04 9.11 9.18 9.29 0.00 #10
3 Kaitlyn WEAVER / Andrew POJE CAN 108.03 53.19 54.84 9.11 8.93 9.18 9.18 9.29 0.00 #7
4 Alexandra STEPANOVA / Ivan BUKIN RUS 107.22 54.34 52.88 8.75 8.61 8.86 8.89 8.96 0.00 #8
5 Charlene GUIGNARD / Marco FABBRI ITA 101.28 52.23 50.05 8.39 8.11 8.39 8.32 8.50 1.00 #6
6 Angelique ABACHKINA / Louis THAURON FRA 95.74 50.20 45.54 7.50 7.36 7.71 7.57 7.82 0.00 #4
7 Elliana POGREBINSKY / Alex BENOIT USA 93.50 48.49 45.01 7.50 7.25 7.61 7.54 7.61 0.00 #5
8 Natalia KALISZEK / Maksym SPODYRIEV POL 89.19 44.93 44.26 7.32 7.11 7.50 7.46 7.50 0.00 #1
9 Alla LOBODA / Pavel DROZD RUS 85.42 40.95 44.47 7.50 7.21 7.50 7.46 7.39 0.00 #3
10 Lorenza ALESSANDRINI / Pierre SOUQUET FRA 80.21 39.69 40.52 6.79 6.50 6.89 6.79 6.79 0.00 #2

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SD FD
1 Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON
FRA
201.98 1 1
2 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES
USA
181.85 2 2
3 Alexandra STEPANOVA / Ivan BUKIN
RUS
177.24 3 4
4 Kaitlyn WEAVER / Andrew POJE
CAN
176.97 5 3
5 Charlene GUIGNARD / Marco FABBRI
ITA
171.01 4 5
6 Angelique ABACHKINA / Louis THAURON
FRA
155.55 8 6
7 Elliana POGREBINSKY / Alex BENOIT
USA
154.14 6 7
8 Natalia KALISZEK / Maksym SPODYRIEV
POL
147.77 9 8
9 Alla LOBODA / Pavel DROZD
RUS
145.85 7 9
10 Lorenza ALESSANDRINI / Pierre SOUQUET
FRA
134.28 10 10

2017 Internationaux de France Dance Preview

With two events left in the Grand Prix series, only Virtue and Moir have qualified for the Final with 30 points.  Hubbell and Donohue have 24 points as do Bobrova and Soloviev and will have to wait and see how the next two weeks play out to determine if they receive a spot in the Final.

Papadakis and Cizeron won gold at Cup of China with personal best scores across the board.  They were also the first dance team to break the 200 point mark and currently hold the world record score.  They need a gold, silver, or bronze medal to qualify for the Final while a 4th place finish would keep them in the running.  Their short dance had a Level 4 rhumba, twizzles, and lift, and partial step sequence with Level 3 on their non touching step sequence.  They had all positive GOEs, worth nearly 11 points, and program components in the mid to high 9s.  They even received eight 10.00 marks, better than they scored at Finlandia Trophy earlier in the season.  They earned at least one 10.00 from five of the nine judges.  Their free dance had Level 4 twizzles, lifts, and spin, and the midline step sequence with Level 3 on their circular step sequence.  Their GOEs were all positive, netting 17 points and their program components were extremely high, in the mid to high 9s with their interpretation score averaging 9.93.  In all, they received 14 10.00 marks for their free dance, including at least one from seven of the nine judges.  They have the 2nd best short dance, best free dance, and best total scores.

Weaver and Poje won silver at Skate Canada with a personal best short dance score. They need a gold or silver medal to qualify for the Final.  Their short dance featured Level 4 twizzles, rhumba, partial step sequence, and lift, with only a Level 3 on the non touching step sequence.  They earned all positive GOEs worth almost 9 points and had program components in the low to mid 9s.  They made a switch to a new free dance before Skate Canada and while the move seems to have paid off, it should be even better at this event with more run-throughs under their belt.  Their free dance received Level 4 on their lifts, twizzles, and spin, and most impressively on their diagonal step sequence.  Their only Level 3 element was on the circular step sequence.  They had all positive GOEs, totaling 14 points and had program components in the low to mid 9s.  They did receive a one point deduction for an extended lift.  They have the 3rd best short dance, 4th best free dance, and 3rd best total scores.

Chock and Bates won silver at Cup of China.  They need a gold or silver medal to guarantee a spot in the Final.  They short dance earned Level 4 for their twizzles and lift with Level 3 on the partial step sequence and the rhumba.  They had all positive GOEs worth 7 points and program components in the low to mid 9s.  heir free dance received Level 4 for their lifts, twizzles, and spin, with Level 3 on their step sequences.  They earned all positive GOEs worth 14 points with program components in the low to mid 9s.  They have the 8th best short dance, 6th best free dance, and 8th best total scores.

Stepanova and Bukin won the bronze medal at Rostelecom Cup with a personal best free dance and total score.  They need a gold medal to guarantee themselves a spot in the Final.  Their short dance received Level 4 for their twizzles and lift with Level 3 on all three step sequences.  They had all positive GOEs, receiving nearly 7 points.  Their program components were in the mid to high 8s.   Their free dance earned Level 4 for their lifts, twizzles, and spin, with Level 3 on their step sequences.  They again earned all positive GOEs, worth 13 points and had program components in the mid to high 8s.  They have the 9th best free dance and 9th best total scores.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Papadakis/Cizeron

Silver: Chock/Bates

Bronze: Weaver/Poje

 

Bios of the competitors: 

Weaver/Poje, CAN: They finished 4th at Worlds and 5th at Four Continents.  They won silver at Skate Canada.  They are the 2014 World Silver Medalists, 2015 World Bronze Medalists, 2010 and 2015 Four Continents Champions, 2012 and 2016 Four Continents Bronze Medalists, and 2007 World Junior Bronze Medalists.  Their personal best is 190.56.  She is 28 and he is 30.

Abachkina/Thauron, FRA: They finished 8th at Junior Worlds last season.  They placed 8th at Cup of China.  Their personal best is 152.17.  She is 17 and he is 22.

Alessandrini/Souquet, FRA: They placed 28th at Worlds.  They finished 9th at Trophee de France last season.  Their personal best is 131.78.  She is 27 and he is 23.

Papadakis/Cizeron, FRA: They are the reigning World Silver Medalists and European Champions.  They won gold at Cup of China.  They are the 2015 and 2016 European Champions, 2015 and 2016 World Champions, and 2013 World Junior Silver Medalists.  Their personal best is 200.43.  She is 22 and he is 23.

Guignard/Fabbri, ITA: They placed 11th at Worlds and 6th at Europeans.  They finished 5th at Rostelecom Cup.  Their personal best is 180.30.  She is 28 and he is 29.

Kaliszek/Spodyriev, POL: They finished 14th at Worlds and 8th at Europeans.  They placed 9th at Skate Canada.  Their personal best is 157.15.  She is 21 and he is 23.

Loboda/Drozd, RUS: They are the reigning World Junior Silver Medalists.  They finished 5th at Skate Canada.  They are the 2016 World Junior Bronze Medalists.  Their personal best is 164.37.  She is 18 and he is 21.

Stepanova/Bukin, RUS: They placed 10th at Worlds and 5th at Europeans.  They won bronze at Rostelecom Cup.  They are the 2015 European Bronze Medalists, 2013 World Junior Champions, and 2012 World Junior Silver Medalists.  Their personal best is 179.35.  She is 22 and he is 24.

Chock/Bates, USA: They finished 7th at Worlds and are the reigning Four Continents Bronze Medalists.  They won silver at Cup of China.  They are the 2015 World Silver Medalists, 2016 World Bronze Medalists, 2015 and 2016 Four Continents Silver Medalists, and 2013 Four Continents Bronze Medalists.  Their personal best is 189.01.  She is 25 and he is 28.

Pogrebinsky/Benoit, USA: They finished 7th at Cup of China.  Their personal best is 167.81.  She is 19 and he is 22.

2017 Cup of China Dance Results

Short Dance

  Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON FRA 81.10 42.35 38.75 9.61 9.57 9.79 9.71 9.75 0.00 #8
2 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES USA 72.66 35.97 36.69 9.07 9.04 9.25 9.21 9.29 0.00 #9
3 Ekaterina BOBROVA / Dmitri SOLOVIEV RUS 72.34 35.78 36.56 9.21 9.00 9.21 9.14 9.14 0.00 #10
4 Tiffani ZAGORSKI / Jonathan GUERREIRO RUS 67.62 35.93 31.69 7.86 7.75 8.04 7.93 8.04 0.00 #3
5 Lorraine MCNAMARA / Quinn CARPENTER USA 63.65 34.30 29.35 7.50 7.21 7.36 7.32 7.29 0.00 #7
6 Angelique ABACHKINA / Louis THAURON FRA 59.91 31.07 28.84 7.00 7.00 7.36 7.32 7.36 0.00 #5
7 Elliana POGREBINSKY / Alex BENOIT USA 59.32 30.14 29.18 7.25 7.11 7.36 7.43 7.32 0.00 #6
8 Shiyue WANG / Xinyu LIU CHN 59.07 30.33 28.74 7.25 6.96 7.29 7.25 7.18 0.00 #4
9 Hong CHEN / Yan ZHAO CHN 47.39 23.14 24.25 6.14 5.79 6.21 6.14 6.04 0.00 #2
10 Xiaotong WANG / Kaige ZHAO CHN 38.74 18.21 20.53 5.18 4.93 5.18 5.39 5.00 0.00 #1

Free Dance

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON FRA 119.33 60.77 58.56 9.61 9.61 9.86 9.79 9.93 0.00 #8
2 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES USA 111.84 56.27 55.57 9.11 9.21 9.36 9.32 9.32 0.00 #9
3 Ekaterina BOBROVA / Dmitri SOLOVIEV RUS 110.50 55.36 55.14 9.18 8.93 9.29 9.25 9.29 0.00 #10
4 Tiffani ZAGORSKI / Jonathan GUERREIRO RUS 96.79 48.57 48.22 8.14 7.79 8.00 8.11 8.14 0.00 #7
5 Lorraine MCNAMARA / Quinn CARPENTER USA 93.96 48.99 44.97 7.43 7.18 7.61 7.64 7.61 0.00 #6
6 Shiyue WANG / Xinyu LIU CHN 92.10 47.74 44.36 7.32 7.11 7.46 7.54 7.54 0.00 #4
7 Elliana POGREBINSKY / Alex BENOIT USA 91.15 46.97 44.18 7.39 7.14 7.43 7.39 7.46 0.00 #5
8 Angelique ABACHKINA / Louis THAURON FRA 84.99 41.80 43.19 7.04 6.96 7.32 7.32 7.36 0.00 #3
9 Hong CHEN / Yan ZHAO CHN 70.25 34.24 36.01 6.14 5.79 6.14 6.04 5.89 0.00 #2
10 Xiaotong WANG / Kaige ZHAO CHN 63.92 33.49 30.43 5.18 4.86 5.11 5.21 5.00 0.00 #1

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SD FD
1 Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON
FRA
200.43 1 1
2 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES
USA
184.50 2 2
3 Ekaterina BOBROVA / Dmitri SOLOVIEV
RUS
182.84 3 3
4 Tiffani ZAGORSKI / Jonathan GUERREIRO
RUS
164.41 4 4
5 Lorraine MCNAMARA / Quinn CARPENTER
USA
157.61 5 5
6 Shiyue WANG / Xinyu LIU
CHN
151.17 8 6
7 Elliana POGREBINSKY / Alex BENOIT
USA
150.47 7 7
8 Angelique ABACHKINA / Louis THAURON
FRA
144.90 6 8
9 Hong CHEN / Yan ZHAO
CHN
117.64 9 9
10 Xiaotong WANG / Kaige ZHAO
CHN
102.66 10 10

2017 Cup of China Dance Preview

This promises to be a fascinating event.  First, the field is extremely stacked with three top teams competing here all who are current or former World medalists, and all who want a spot on the Olympic podium this season.  There are also several new and up and coming teams, looking to start making a name for themselves in preparation for the next Olympic cycle.  Additionally, there are 10 teams competing here, but only four countries are represented, China, France, Russia, and the US, so there are also mini national competitions going on between these teams.

Three teams are making their Grand Prix debuts, including former Junior World Champions McNamara and Carpenter.  Angelique Abachkina is the youngest lady at this event at age 17, while Ekaterina Bobrova is the oldest at 27.  Quinn Carpenter is 21 while Evan Bates and Dmitri Soloviev are 28.  Chock and Bates and Bobrova and Soloviev have scored over 180 points in their careers, while Papadakis and Cizeron have a personal best above 190.

Papadakis and Cizeron are going into only their fourth season on the Grand Prix, after missing the 2015 season due to injury.  They have won four medals, including three gold, and have qualified for the Final twice, winning medals both times.  They started their season with a gold medal at Finlandia Trophy.  Their short dance had a Level 4 rhumba, twizzles, and lift, with Level 3 on their non touching step sequence and partial step sequence.  They had all positive GOEs, worth 9 points, and program components in the mid to high 9s.  They even received five 10.00 marks.  Their free dance had Level 4 twizzles, lifts, and spin, with Level 3 on their circular step sequence.  They had a fall during their diagonal step sequence, which dropped it to a Level 2 and made the element worth only 2.60 points after all the deductions.  In contrast, their other step sequence was still only a Level 3 but was worth 9.85 points, so the fall cost them dearly.  The rest of their program was fairly strong, and they still managed to earn 13 points from GOEs and receive program components in the mid 9s.  They have the 2nd best short dance, 6th best free dance, and 5th best total scores.

Bobrova and Soloviev won a silver medal at Rostelecom Cup.  They need a gold medal to guarantee their spot in the Final, while a silver will keep them in contention.  Their short dance in Russia featured Level 4 twizzles, non touching step sequence, rhumba, and lift with Level 3 on their partial step sequence.  They earned all positive GOEs and had program components in the low to mid 9s.  While they have some of the best raw technical scores this season, they can still improve their GOEs and especially their program components.  However, their GOE and program component marks were higher than they received at Pndrej Nepela Trophy earlier this season, and they improved their levels as well.  Their free dance earned Level 4 for the twizzles, lifts, and the straight line step sequence with Level 3 on their diagonal step sequence.  Their GOEs were all positive, except for their spin, which had a bit of a hiccup and only received Level 2, earning 11 points.  Their program components were similar to earlier in the season in the low to mid 9s.  They have the 5th best short dance, 6th best free dance, and 6th best total scores.

Chock and Bates are coming off a disappointing season where they finished 2nd at US Nationals for the second year in a row, and then finished 7th at Worlds, tying their worst performance ever.  They have not competed yet this season, so they are a bit of a wild card in this event.  There is no denying they are a top team and should land on the podium, but it’s a little harder to predict if they will have the programs at their best capacity in regards to levels and performance quality.  This will be their 7th season on the Grand Prix, and they have medaled 8 times.  The last time they won gold was back at Skate America in 2015.  They have qualified for the Final each of the past three seasons, and they won silver twice, but finished 6th last year.

While they are not necessarily medal contenders at this event, this will be the first match up between McNamara and Carpenter and Pogrebinsky and Benoit.  Pogrebinsky and Benoit made their senior debut last season, despite finishing just 3rd at US Nationals as juniors the year prior and not medaling at Junior Worlds.  That year, McNamara and Carpenter won the gold medal at Junior Worlds but decided to stay junior for one more season.  They failed to make the podium last year, and are making their senior Grand Prix debut at this event.  Pogrebinsky and Benoit have never come out on top of McNamara and Carpenter, but they also have a year of senior experience under their belt.

McNamara and Carpenter are making their Grand Prix debut at this event.  They are the 2016 World Junior Champions.  They kicked off their senior careers with a 5th place finish at the Autumn Classic International and an 8th place finish at Finlandia Trophy.  At the Autumn Classic International, they earned Level 4 for the twizzles and lift in their short dance with Level 3 on their non touching step sequence.  They scored all positive GOEs and had program components in the low to mid 7s.  Their free dance earned Level 4 for their lifts and twizzles, with Level 3 on their serpentine step sequence.  They again earned all positive GOEs and had program components slightly higher in the mid to high 7s.  At Finlandia, their short dance again earned Level 4 for the twizzles and lift but only a Level 2 on their step sequence and their program components were similar in the low to mid 7s.    They had a major error on their free dance at Finlandia, with a fall during their spin.  It only earned a Level 1 and taking into account the deduction, was only worth .70 points.

Pogrebinsky and Benoit are entering into their sophomore season on the Grand Prix.  They finished 4th at Lombardia Trophy to start their season.  At Lombardia Trophy, they earned Level 4 on their curve lift and twizzles in the short dance, with Level 3 on the non touching step sequence, but they only earned Level 1 on the rhumba.  They received all positive GOEs and had program components in the mid 7s.  Their free dance featured a Level 4 spin and lifts, with Level 3 on their twizzles.  They earned all positive GOEs and had program components in the low to mid 7s.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Papadakis/Cizeron

Silver: Chock/Bates

Bronze: Bobrova/Soloviev

 

Bios of the competitors:

Chen/Zhao, CHN: They placed 1oth at Four Continents.  They finished 9th at Cup of China last season.  Their personal best is 128.55.  She is 23 and he is 25.

Wang/Liu, CHN: They finished 16th at Worlds and 7th at Four Continents.  They placed 9th at Skate Canada and 6th at Cup of China last season.  Their personal best is 158.36.  She is 23 and he is 23.

Wang/Zhao, CHN: This is their Grand Prix debut.  She is 19 and he is 22.

Abachkina/Thauron, FRA: They finished 8th at Junior Worlds last season.  They won gold at JGP France and bronze at JGP Japan last season to qualify for the Junior Grand Prix Final where they placed 5th.  This is their Grand Prix debut.  Their personal best is 152.17.  She is 17 and he is 22.

Papadakis/Cizeron, FRA: They are the reigning World Silver Medalists and European Champions.  They won gold at Trophee de France and silver at NHK Trophy last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where they won silver.  They are the 2015 and 2016 European Champions, 2015 and 2016 World Champions, and 2013 World Junior Silver Medalists.  Their personal best is 196.04.  She is 22 and he is 22.

Bobrova/Soloviev, RUS: They finished 5th at Worlds and are the reigning European Bronze Medalists.  They won silver at Rostelecom Cup.  They are the 2013 World Bronze Medalists, 2013 European Champions, 2011 and 2012 European Silver Medalists, 2016 European Bronze Medalists, and 2007 World Junior Champions.  Their personal best is 186.68.  She is 27 and he is 28.

Zagorski/Guerreiro, RUS: They placed 5th at Rostelecom Cup last season.  Their personal best is 173.02.  She is 23 and he is 26.

Chock/Bates, USA: They finished 7th at Worlds and are the reigning Four Continents Bronze Medalists.  They won silver at Skate Canada and silver at Rostelecom Cup last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where they placed 6th.  They are the 2015 World Silver Medalists, 2016 World Bronze Medalists, 2015 and 2016 Four Continents Silver Medalists, and 2013 Four Continents Bronze Medalists.  Their personal best is 189.01.  She is 25 and he is 28.

McNamara/Carpenter, USA: They placed 7th at Junior Worlds.  They won gold at JGP Czech Republic and gold at JGP Slovenia last season to qualify for the Junior Grand Prix Final where they won bronze.  This is their Grand Prix debut.  They are the 2016 World Junior Champions and 2015 World Junior Silver Medalists.  Their personal best is 163.65.  She is 18 and he 21.

Pogrebinsky/Benoit, USA: They finished 7th at Skate America and 6th at Rostelecom Cup last season.  Their personal best is 167.81.  She is 19 and he is 22.

2017 World Championships Dance Preview

In ice dance, all the teams are attempting the same elements, and what the scores come down to are levels, grades of execution and program components.  Teams are seeking to gain Level 4 for all of their elements, including the high value step sequences.  They are looking for all positive GOEs in the 2s and 3s.  And they are trying to achieve the highest program components possible.  No team has earned all Level 4s in either of their programs this season.  With a difference of 1.5 points between a Level 3 and a Level 4 step sequence and two in the short dance and two in the free dance, levels can make a huge difference in who ends up on the podium.

Virtue and Moir came back to competition this season in preparation for competing in next year’s Olympics.  They won two gold medals on the Grand Prix and won gold at the Grand Prix Final.  They are the reigning Four Continents Champions.  They were beat in the free dance at Skate Canada, but since then, they have been on a roll.  The coaching change they have made seems to agree with their style of movement as they have always been a more understated, lyrical team.  They have the top three technical scores in the short dance, program component scores in the short dance, and technical scores in the free dance.  They also have the top two program components scores in the free dance.  Their personal best came at the Grand Prix Final this season where they scored 197.22.  They earned nine 10.00 marks in their free dance at Four Continents.  They have the best short dance, best free dance, and best total scores.

Papadakis and Cizeron seemed untouchable until Virtue and Moir announced their return.  These two teams now train alongside one another.  They are the two time reigning World Champions and three time reigning European Champions.  They won gold at Trophee de France and lost to Virtue and Moir at both NHK Trophy and the Grand Prix Final.  They’ve been missing levels and that has cost them ground in their programs and they’ve been having to come back from behind.  Their personal best is 194.46, set at last year’s World Championships.  They earned five 10.00 marks in their free dance at Europeans.  They have the 2nd best short dance, 3rd best free dance, and 2nd best total scores.

The Shibutanis had their breakout season last year, landing on the World podium for the first time since 2011.  They are the reigning World Silver Medalists and reigning Four Continents Silver Medalists.  They won two gold medals on the Grand Prix and took home gold from the Final.  They have long been known as technical skaters, but were scoring in the 2s on some of their elements early in the season.  They have resolved many of these issues, but still haven’t hit all 4s.  Their free dance is a very subtle, artistic piece and contrasts their hip hop short program.  Their program components have come up significantly this season, as evidenced by their four 10.00 marks in the free dance at Four Continents.  Their personal best came at Four Continents, where they scored 191.85.  They have the 3rd best short dance, 2nd best free dance, and 3rd best total scores.

Cappellini and Lanotte failed to make the Grand Prix Final this year, after placing 4th at Skate Canada.  They turned their season around, winning the silver medal at Europeans.  Their personal best came at that event, where they scored 186.64.  They are capable of hitting top levels on all of their elements, but they haven’t been able to put together all of those elements in the same event.  They are also slightly behind on program components, and did not receive any 10.00s at Europeans.  They have the 7th best short dance, 6th best free dance, and 6th best total scores.

Bobrova and Soloviev are the reigning European Bronze Medalists.  They won a bronze at Skate America and gold at Rostlecom Cup to qualify for the Final where they placed 4th.  Their personal best was at Rostelecom Cup, where they scored 186.68.  At Europeans, they had a costly Level 2 on one of their step sequences and did not receive any 10.00 marks.  They have the 5th best short dance, 5th best free dance, and 5th best total scores.

Chock and Bates are the only team to beat Virtue and Moir this season, finishing ahead of them in the free dance at Skate Canada.  But their season has been uneven.  Their performance at Skate Canada was a personal best, scoring 188.24.  At the Grand Prix Final, they finished 6th and were beaten by Hubbell and Donohue for the first time.  They took home the bronze medal from Four Continents, but were over 6 points behind the Shibutanis.  Their scores at Skate Canada were so high because they received Level 4s on some of their step sequences, the first team to do so this season.  But they haven’t been able to replicate that since.  They did receive four 10.00 marks for their free dance at Four Continents.  They have the 4th best short dance, 4th best free dance, and 4th best total scores.

Weaver and Poje have found themselves slipping in the last few seasons.  They nearly won a World Championship in 2014 and medaled again in 2015.  But they finished 5th last season.  They won a silver and bronze on the Grand Prix, and failed to qualify for the Final this year.  They finished 5th at Four Continents, their worst performance ever at that event (tied with 2008 and 2009). At Four Continents they had some program component marks in the 8s, which will not be good enough to get onto the podium at Worlds.  Their levels are what’s giving them the biggest trouble this season.  They have not yet scored a 4 on either step sequence in their short dance or their twizzles.  They are the only top team not to receive a Level 4 on their twizzles this season, which costs them about 1 point per event.  Their personal best was set at the World Team Trophy in 2015 when they scored 182.93.  They have the 9th best short dance, 9th best free dance, and 9th best total scores.

Gilles and Poirier won two bronze medals on the Grand Prix this season.  They finished 6th at Four Continents last month and 8th at Worlds last season.  Their personal best came from Skate Canada this year, when they scored 182.57.  They have the 7th best free dance and 8th best total scores.

Hubbell and Donohue finished 4th at Four Continents, but they were 5 points from the podium.  They did set a personal best at that event, scoring 180.82.  They won a pair of silver medals on the Grand Prix to qualify for the Final where they finished 5th.  They placed 6th at Worlds last season.  They have the 8th best short dance and 10th best total scores.

Other teams looking to crack the top ten include Stepanova and Bukin and Guignard and Fabbri.

Virtue and Moir, the Shibutanis, Chock and Bates, Papadakis and Cizeron, and Cappellini and Lanotte have all scored above 40 points in the short program for their technical score.  Virtue and Moir hold the top mark of 42.16 with the Shibutanis the next closest at 40.85.

Virtue and Moir, Papadakis and Cizeron, the Shibutanis, and Bobrova and Soloviev have scored above 37 points in program components in the short dance.  The top mark was set by Virtue and Moir at 38.37 with Papadakis and Cizeron having the second highest score of 37.83.

For the free dance, Virtue and Moir, the Shibutanis, Papadakis and Cizeron, Chock and Bates, and Gilles and Poirier have scored above 56 points on the technical side.  Virtue and Moir again have the highest mark of 59.25 with the Shibutanis setting the second highest mark of 58.43.

In program components, Virtue and Moir, Papadakis and Cizeron, the Shibutanis, Bobrova and Soloviev, and Cappellini and Lanotte have all scored above 56 points in program components.  Virtue and Moir have the highest score of 58.14 with Papadakis and Cizeron setting the next highest mark of 57.61.

Virtue and Moir have a significant lead in all aspects of competition and that is without hitting the top levels on their step sequences.  Papadakis and Cizeron have the second highest artistic marks while the Shibutanis have the second highest technical marks.  What this podium is going to come down to is who can hit the Level 4s and how close will the gap on the artistic side be between the French and the Americans.

 

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Virtue/Moir

Silver: Papadakis/Cizeron

Bronze: Shibutani/Shibutani

2017 Four Continents Championships Dance Results

Short Program

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Tessa VIRTUE / Scott MOIR CAN 79.75 41.38 38.37 9.54 9.50 9.50 9.68 9.75 0.00 #9
2 Maia SHIBUTANI / Alex SHIBUTANI USA 76.59 39.49 37.10 9.32 9.07 9.32 9.29 9.36 0.00 #15
3 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES USA 74.67 38.73 35.94 8.89 8.79 9.07 8.96 9.21 0.00 #14
4 Madison HUBBELL / Zachary DONOHUE USA 73.79 38.56 35.23 8.82 8.57 8.93 8.82 8.89 0.00 #16
5 Kaitlyn WEAVER / Andrew POJE CAN 71.15 34.93 36.22 9.00 8.96 8.96 9.14 9.21 0.00 #13
6 Shiyue WANG / Xinyu LIU CHN 61.45 32.33 29.12 7.25 7.07 7.39 7.36 7.32 0.00 #12
7 Piper GILLES / Paul POIRIER CAN 61.21 28.27 33.94 8.39 8.43 8.32 8.68 8.61 1.00 #11
8 Yura MIN / Alexander GAMELIN KOR 59.01 32.75 26.26 6.57 6.32 6.64 6.61 6.68 0.00 #7
9 Kana MURAMOTO / Chris REED JPN 57.80 29.53 28.27 7.11 6.89 7.11 7.11 7.11 0.00 #10
10 Linshu SONG / Zhuoming SUN CHN 51.60 27.48 24.12 6.04 5.71 6.11 6.18 6.11 0.00 #4
11 Hong CHEN / Yan ZHAO CHN 51.34 26.99 24.35 6.25 5.86 6.07 6.25 6.00 0.00 #2
12 Emi HIRAI / Marien DE LA ASUNCION JPN 49.35 25.55 23.80 5.93 5.79 5.89 6.11 6.04 0.00 #5
13 Hojung LEE / Richard Kang In KAM KOR 44.57 22.94 22.63 5.82 5.50 5.50 5.82 5.64 1.00 #8
14 Adele MORRISON / Demid ROKACHEV AUS 37.87 20.07 17.80 4.43 4.21 4.50 4.61 4.50 0.00 #1
15 Kimberley HEW-LOW / Timothy MCKERNAN AUS 33.54 16.97 17.57 4.50 4.21 4.39 4.50 4.36 1.00 #3
16 Matilda FRIEND / William BADAOUI AUS 32.75 17.52 18.23 4.57 4.54 4.46 4.68 4.54 3.00 #6

Free Skate

 Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Tessa VIRTUE / Scott MOIR CAN 117.20 59.25 57.95 9.54 9.57 9.64 9.79 9.75 0.00 #16
2 Maia SHIBUTANI / Alex SHIBUTANI USA 115.26 58.43 56.83 9.46 9.32 9.54 9.54 9.50 0.00 #15
3 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES USA 110.91 55.62 55.29 9.11 9.04 9.25 9.36 9.32 0.00 #13
4 Kaitlyn WEAVER / Andrew POJE CAN 108.94 53.53 55.41 9.14 9.07 9.25 9.36 9.36 0.00 #12
5 Piper GILLES / Paul POIRIER CAN 108.93 54.93 54.00 8.71 8.89 9.04 9.07 9.29 0.00 #10
6 Madison HUBBELL / Zachary DONOHUE USA 107.03 53.68 53.35 8.75 8.71 8.93 9.07 9.00 0.00 #14
7 Shiyue WANG / Xinyu LIU CHN 92.78 48.21 44.57 7.50 7.29 7.50 7.46 7.39 0.00 #11
8 Yura MIN / Alexander GAMELIN KOR 85.68 44.28 41.40 6.82 6.68 7.00 6.93 7.07 0.00 #9
9 Kana MURAMOTO / Chris REED JPN 82.58 38.86 43.72 7.21 7.04 7.29 7.46 7.43 0.00 #6
10 Hong CHEN / Yan ZHAO CHN 77.21 41.05 36.16 6.11 5.82 6.00 6.14 6.07 0.00 #7
11 Linshu SONG / Zhuoming SUN CHN 72.99 38.26 35.73 5.96 5.75 6.00 6.11 5.96 1.00 #5
12 Emi HIRAI / Marien DE LA ASUNCION JPN 72.36 37.34 35.02 5.89 5.68 5.71 6.04 5.86 0.00 #8
13 Hojung LEE / Richard Kang In KAM KOR 67.85 37.20 32.65 5.57 5.29 5.32 5.64 5.39 2.00 #3
14 Adele MORRISON / Demid ROKACHEV AUS 58.48 33.73 25.75 4.43 4.07 4.36 4.39 4.21 1.00 #2
15 Matilda FRIEND / William BADAOUI AUS 56.54 29.89 26.65 4.46 4.21 4.50 4.54 4.50 0.00 #1
16 Kimberley HEW-LOW / Timothy MCKERNAN AUS 51.43 26.55 25.88 4.43 4.07 4.39 4.36 4.32 1.00 #4

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SD FD
1 Tessa VIRTUE / Scott MOIR
CAN
196.95 1 1
2 Maia SHIBUTANI / Alex SHIBUTANI
USA
191.85 2 2
3 Madison CHOCK / Evan BATES
USA
185.58 3 3
4 Madison HUBBELL / Zachary DONOHUE
USA
180.82 4 6
5 Kaitlyn WEAVER / Andrew POJE
CAN
180.09 5 4
6 Piper GILLES / Paul POIRIER
CAN
170.14 7 5
7 Shiyue WANG / Xinyu LIU
CHN
154.23 6 7
8 Yura MIN / Alexander GAMELIN
KOR
144.69 8 8
9 Kana MURAMOTO / Chris REED
JPN
140.38 9 9
10 Hong CHEN / Yan ZHAO
CHN
128.55 11 10
11 Linshu SONG / Zhuoming SUN
CHN
124.59 10 11
12 Emi HIRAI / Marien DE LA ASUNCION
JPN
121.71 12 12
13 Hojung LEE / Richard Kang In KAM
KOR
112.42 13 13
14 Adele MORRISON / Demid ROKACHEV
AUS
96.35 14 14
15 Matilda FRIEND / William BADAOUI
AUS
89.29 16 15
16 Kimberley HEW-LOW / Timothy MCKERNAN
AUS
84.97 15 16