2017 Internationaux de France Pairs Preview

With two events to go in the series, Sui and Han have qualified for the Final with 30 points, while Stolbova and Klimov have also qualified with 26 points.  Astakhova and Rogonov have 22 points and are a long shot for the Final, but still in the running depending on how the events the next two weeks pan out.  There are three teams at this event that still have a shot of qualifying for the Final.

Tarasova and Morozov won their first career Grand Prix gold medal with a personal best free skate at Rostelecom Cup.  They need a gold, silver, or bronze medal to qualify for the Final, while a 4th place finish would keep them in contention.  Their short program includes side by side triple toes and a throw triple loop.  They earned Level 4 for their twist, pair spin, lift and step sequence.  They had earned a Level 4 on their death spiral earlier this season at Nebelhorn Trophy.  They had program components in the low to mid 9s.  Their free skate included a Level 3 quad twist that earned positive GOEs, earning 8.74 points at Nebelhorn Trophy and 8.69 points at Rostelecom Cup.  They landed their side by side triple salchows and triple toe + double toe + double toe successfully along with their throw triple salchow and throw triple loop.  The only negative GOEs they received on their program were a very slight negative on the throw triple loop.  They earned Level 4 on their lifts and spins with program components in the low to mid 9s.  They lost a point for a time violation at both of their events this season.  They have the 2nd best short program, 4th best free skate, and 2nd best total scores.

James and Cipres won bronze in a tough field at Skate Canada.  They need a gold medal to guarantee a spot in the Final.  Their short program includes a solo triple salchow and a throw triple lutz.  They earned Level 4 on their lift and step sequence, but had earned a Level 4 on their death spiral at the Autumn Classic International.  They had all positive GOEs, earning 7 points, and their program components were in the mid to high 8s.  Their free skate included a side by side triple toe + double toe + double toe and a triple salchow.  Their throw jumps include a triple lutz and a quad salchow which she stood up on and was fully rotated for the second time this season.  They earned Level 4 on their death spiral, side by side spin, and two lifts.  Their program components were in the mid to high 8s.  They have the 6th best short program, 5th best free skate, and 6th best total scores.

Peng and Jin are out of the running for the Grand Prix Final after finishing 5th at Skate Canada, but they could still play spoiler and win a medal.  While their short program at Skate Canada did not land them in the top 6, they had a more successful outing at Finlandia Trophy.  At that event, their short program included a triple toe and a throw triple loop.  They earned Level 4 on their twist, death spiral, and lift.  They had all positive GOEs and program components in the high 7s to mid 8s.  Their free skate includes side by side triple toe + double toe and triple salchow which they have not landed cleanly at either of their events this season.  Their throw jumps are a triple loop and triple salchow.  They earned Level 4 on their death spiral and two lifts at Skate Canada.  Their program components were in the low to mid 7s.  They have the 8th best short program and 9th best total scores.

Della Monica and Guarise finished 4th at Cup of China.  They need a gold medal to keep themselves in contention for the Final.  Their short program includes  side by side triple salchows and a throw triple loop.  They have earned Level 4 on different elements throughout the season, earning Level 4 on each element at least once this season, however they have hit Level 4 on the lift at all three of their events.  Their program components have been consistent in the mid to high 7s.  Their free skate features side by side triple salchows but they have only landed their triple toe + double combination once this season.  For their throws they have triple loop and triple salchow.  Again, they have earned Level 4 on everything at some points this season, but their spins have received Level 4 at all three of their events.  Their program components have again been fairly consistent, with Cup of China being the average in the low to mid 8s.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Tarasova/Morozov

Silver: James/Cipres

Bronze: Della Monica/Guarise

 

Bios of the competitors:

Ilyushechkina/Moscovitch, CAN: They finished 6th at Worlds and are the reigning Four Continents Bronze Medalists.  They placed 6th at Skate Canada.  Their personal best is 206.19.  She is 26 and he is 33.

Peng/Jin, CHN: They placed 5th at Four Continents.  They finished 5th at Skate Canada.  Their personal best is 204.49.  She is 20 and he is 23.

Esbrat/Novoselov, FRA: They finished 27th at Worlds and 13th at Europeans.  This is their Grand Prix debut.  Their personal best is 145.72.  She is 20 and he is 27.

James/Cipres, FRA: They finished 8th at Worlds and are the reigning European Bronze Medalists.  They won bronze at Skate Canada.  Their personal best is 222.59.  She is 30 and he is 26.

Jones/Boyadji, GBR: They placed 26th at Worlds and 14th at Europeans.  This is their Grand Prix debut.  She is 37 and he is 27.

Della Monica/Guarise, ITA: They placed 13th at Worlds and 8th at Europeans.  They finished 4th at Cup of China.  Their personal best is 193.50.  She is 28 and he is 29.

Tarasova/Morozov, RUS: They are the reigning World Bronze Medalists and reigning European Champions.  They won gold at Rostelecom Cup.  They are the 2015 and 2016 European Bronze Medalists and 2014 World Junior Silver Medalists.  Their personal best is 227.58.  She is 22 and he is 25.

Castelli/Tran, USA: They placed 7th at Rostelecom Cup.  Their personal best is 176.38.  She is 27 and he is 27.

2017 Skate Canada Pairs Preview

Four of these teams qualified for the Grand Prix Final last season, including Savchenko and Massot who had to withdraw and Zabiiako and Enbert who were first alternates and took their place.  Only one team is making their Grand Prix debut.  The youngest female competitor is 20 while the oldest is 33.  The youngest male competitor is 23 and the oldest is 33.  Six of the teams have scored over 200 points, while three teams have scored over 220.

This looks to be a really exciting event, as three of these teams have top 5 scores for the season so far, and five teams have placed in the top 8.  These teams definitely have some technical firepower with two attempting throw quad salchows and one attempting throw triple axel.

Duhamel and Radford have a big advantage on their solo jump with a triple lutz.  This has a base value of 6.00 compared to the base value of 4.40 for the triple salchow completed by James and Cipres and Savchenko and Massot.  However, in the free skate, their lutzes only earned .20 points after a downgrade and a fall.

Both Duhamel/Radford and James/Cipres complete a throw triple lutz in their short program, worth 5.50 points.  Savchenko and Massot have a throw triple axel worth 7.70 points, however they only earned 3.70 points after their fall.  Both the Canadians and the French earned positive GOEs, worth a total of 6.76 and 5.92 respectively, widening the gap even more.  If Savchenko and Massot hit the axel, there is no way for the other two teams to catch them technically, however they have to be able to land it cleanly with a positive GOE to gain an advantage.

James and Cipres landed the throw quad salchow in their free skate with a base value of 8.20.  They had only a slight negative GOE and earned 7.80 points overall.  Duhamel and Radford fell on their attempt, only earning 4.20 points when accounting for the one point deduction.  Savchenko and Massot again went for the triple axel and earned just 3.70 points after their fall.  Savchenko and Massot’s second throw jump is a triple salchow, worth a full point less than the lutz of the other two teams.

Outside of these big moments, where these teams are really going to set themselves apart is hitting their levels, especially on the lifts.  No team has maxed out their levels yet and several have received Level 3 or less on one of more of their lifts, leaving lots of points on the table.  Savchenko and Massot have come closes at Nebelhorn Trophy in their free skate, which made up for errors they made on their jumps.  They actually made errors on three of the four jumping passes in that program, but still hold the second highest free skate score of the season.

Savchenko and Massot are entering their sophomore season on the Grand Prix as a team after winning two gold medals and qualifying for the Final last season.  They won silver at Nebelhorn Trophy to start their season.  Their short program includes solo triple salchows and a throw triple axel that she fell on, but was fully rotated.  They earned Level 4 on their death spiral, pair spin, and step sequence.  Their program components were in the low 9s.  Their free skate includes a solo triple toe + triple toe sequence (fall) and  a triple salchow (doubled).  Their throw jumps include a triple axel (fall) and triple salchow.  They earned Level 4 on their lifts, spins, and death spiral.  Their program components were in the low to mid 9s.  They have the 4th best short program, 2nd best free skate, and 2nd best total scores.

James and Cipres will compete on the Grand Prix for their 7th season this year, although most of their past appearances have been host picks at Trophee de France, although the last three seasons they have earned two slots.  They have won two medals and have never qualified for the Final.  They started their season with a gold medal at the Autumn Classic International.  Their short program includes a solo triple salchow and a throw triple lutz.  They earned Level 4 on their lift, death spiral, and step sequence.  They had all positive GOEs, earning 7 points, and heir program components were in the mid to high 8s.  They did lose a point for going over time.  Their free skate included a side by side double toe + double toe + double toe (first jump should be a triple) and a triple salchow.  Their throw jumps include a triple lutz and a quad salchow which she stood up on and was fully rotated.  They earned Level 4 on their death spiral, spins, and one lift.  Their program components were in the mid 8s to low 9s.  They have the 3rd best short program, 3rd best free skate, and 3rd best total scores.

Duhamel and Radford will compete for the 8th season on the Grand Prix and they have medaled at ever event since 2011, including six consecutive gold medals.  They have qualified for the Final each of the last six seasons, and have medaled the last three.  However, they had their worst finish of their career at Worlds last year, placing 7th.  They won silver at the Autumn Classic International to start their season.  Their short program includes side by side triple lutzes and a triple lutz throw.  They earned positive GOEs on the solo lutzes, earning 7.26 points overall.  They earned Level 4 on their lift and spin.  They had all positive GOEs, earning 8 points, and their program components were in the high 8s and low 9s.  Their free skate was a bit of a mess with three falls in the program.  Their side by side triple lutzes were downgraded and they missed the combo on an under-rotated triple salchow.  They have a throw quad lutz and she fell on a fully rotated quad salchow attempt.  They earned Level 4 on their triple twist, two lifts, and both spins.  Their program components were in the mid 8s.  They have the 2nd best short program, 10th best free skate, and 5th best total scores.

Peng and Jin are starting their second season on the Grand Prix as a team after winning two silver medals and qualifying for the Final last season.  They won gold at Finlandia Trophy earlier this season.  Their short program includes a triple toe and a throw triple loop.  They earned Level 4 on their twist, death spiral, and lift.  They had all positive GOEs and program components in the high 7s to mid 8s.  Their free skate includes side by side triple toe + double toe and triple salchow (fall) and their throw jumps are a triple loop and triple salchow (fall).  They earned Level 4 on their twist and all three lifts.  Their program components were in the high 7s to low 8s.  They have the 6th best short program, 9th best free skate, and 7th best total scores.

Zabiiako and Enbert will compete for their third season on the Grand Prix and won their first medal last year at this event, qualifying them for the Final.  They won gold at Lombardia Trophy and gold at Ondrej Nepela Trophy to start their season.  At Lombardia Trophy, they received Level 4 for their triple twist, lift, and pairs spin and landed a side by side triple toe and a throw triple loop.  They received all positive GOEs and had program components in the mid to high 7s.  Their free skate had a triple toe + double toe + double loop and a doubled salchow as their side by side jumps with a throw triple lutz and a throw triple loop.  They earned Level 4 for their spins and lifts.  Their program components were again in the mid to high 7s.  At Nepela Trophy, their short program levels were lower, receiving only a Level 2 for their twist and their program components were also lower in the low to mid 7s.  Their free skate at that event included the triple salchow they had doubled previously but they earned Level 3 on one of their lifts.  Their program components were similar in the mid 7s.  They have the 7th best short program, 7th best free skate, and 8th best total scores.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Savchenko/Massot

Silver: James/Cipres

Bronze: Duhamel/Radford

 

Bios of the competitors:

Duhamel/Radford, CAN: They placed 7th at Worlds and are the reigning Four Continents Silver Medalists. They won gold at Skate Canada and gold at NHK Trophy last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where they won bronze.  They are the 2015 and 2016 World Champions; 2013 and 2014 World Bronze Medalists; 2013 and 2015 Four Continents Champions; and 2011 Four Continents Silver Medalists.  Their personal best is 231.99.  She is 31 and he is 32.

Ilyushechkina/Moscovitch, CAN: They finished 6th at Worlds and are the reigning Four Continents Bronze Medalists.  They won bronze at Skate Canada and bronze at Cup of China last season.  Their personal best is 206.19.  She is 25 and he is 33.

Kolodziej/Deschamps, CAN:

Peng/Jin, CHN: They placed 5th at Four Continents.  They won silver at Cup of China and silver at NHK Trophy last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where they finished 6th.  Their personal best is 204.49.  She is 20 and he is 23.

James/Cipres, FRA: They finished 8th at Worlds and are the reigning European Bronze Medalists.  They placed 4th at Skate America and won bronze at Trophee de France last season.  Their personal best is 222.59.  She is 30 and he is 26.

Savchenko/Massot, GER: They are the reigning World Silver Medalists and reigning European Silver Medalists.  They won gold at Rostelecom Cup and gold at Trophee de France last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final but they had to withdraw due to injury.  They are the 2016 World Bronze Medalists and 2016 European Silver Medalists.  Their personal best is 230.30.  She is 33 and he is 28.

Zabiiako/Enbert, RUS: They finished 12th at Worlds and 5th at Europeans.  They won silver at Rostelecom Cup and placed 4th at Trophee de France to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where they placed 4th.  Their personal best is 200.75.  She is 23 and he is 28.

Denney/Frazier, USA: They placed 20th at Worlds and 8th at Four Continents.  They won silver at Skate America and finished 4th at Skate Canada last season.  They are the 2013 World Junior Champions.  Their personal best is 192.65.  She is 21 and he is 24.

2017 Finlandia Trophy Pairs Results

Short Program

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Deduction
StN.
1 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 70.93 38.49 32.44 7.96 7.88 8.21 8.33 8.17 0.00 #5
2 Ksenia STOLBOVA / Fedor KLIMOV RUS 70.12 35.83 34.29 8.58 8.33 8.63 8.71 8.63 0.00 #4
3 Nicole DELLA MONICA / Matteo GUARISE ITA 65.42 34.90 30.52 7.58 7.38 7.63 7.83 7.75 0.00 #7
4 Liubov ILYUSHECHKINA / Dylan MOSCOVITCH CAN 64.15 33.16 30.99 7.67 7.38 7.83 8.04 7.83 0.00 #2
5 Kristina ASTAKHOVA / Alexei ROGONOV RUS 64.13 35.52 28.61 7.38 6.92 7.25 7.17 7.04 0.00 #3
6 Jessica CALALANG / Zack SIDHU USA 53.41 29.10 24.31 6.08 5.71 6.17 6.25 6.17 0.00 #1
7 Deanna STELLATO / Nathan BARTHOLOMAY USA 50.90 28.15 24.75 6.58 6.08 5.79 6.38 6.13 2.00 #6
8 Minerva Fabienne HASE / Nolan SEEGERT GER 45.67 23.21 23.46 6.08 5.71 5.67 6.08 5.79 1.00 #8

Free Skate

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Deduction
StN.
1 Nicole DELLA MONICA / Matteo GUARISE ITA 128.08 63.73 64.35 7.92 7.88 8.00 8.25 8.17 0.00 #6
2 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 127.10 63.94 65.16 8.13 8.17 7.96 8.25 8.21 2.00 #8
3 Liubov ILYUSHECHKINA / Dylan MOSCOVITCH CAN 119.65 55.32 64.33 7.92 7.75 8.04 8.29 8.21 0.00 #5
4 Ksenia STOLBOVA / Fedor KLIMOV RUS 114.66 51.66 66.00 8.71 8.33 7.54 8.38 8.29 3.00 #7
5 Kristina ASTAKHOVA / Alexei ROGONOV RUS 112.75 55.21 57.54 7.33 6.88 7.08 7.38 7.29 0.00 #4
6 Deanna STELLATO / Nathan BARTHOLOMAY USA 110.27 58.89 52.38 6.63 6.21 6.63 6.63 6.63 1.00 #2
7 Jessica CALALANG / Zack SIDHU USA 103.47 53.82 50.65 6.42 6.08 6.33 6.54 6.29 1.00 #3
8 Minerva Fabienne HASE / Nolan SEEGERT GER 89.71 45.95 43.76 5.71 5.21 5.33 5.63 5.46 0.00 #1

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SP FS
1 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 198.03 1 2
2 Nicole DELLA MONICA / Matteo GUARISE ITA 193.50 3 1
3 Ksenia STOLBOVA / Fedor KLIMOV RUS 184.78 2 4
4 Liubov ILYUSHECHKINA / Dylan MOSCOVITCH CAN 183.80 4 3
5 Kristina ASTAKHOVA / Alexei ROGONOV RUS 176.88 5 5
6 Deanna STELLATO / Nathan BARTHOLOMAY USA 161.17 7 6
7 Jessica CALALANG / Zack SIDHU USA 156.88 6 7
8 Minerva Fabienne HASE / Nolan SEEGERT GER 135.38 8 8

2016 Grand Prix Final Pairs Results

Short Program

 Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Evgenia TARASOVA / Vladimir MOROZOV RUS 78.60 43.49 35.11 8.68 8.61 9.00 8.71 8.89 0.00 #2
2 Xiaoyu YU / Hao ZHANG CHN 75.34 41.83 33.51 8.54 8.18 8.36 8.43 8.39 0.00 #6
3 Meagan DUHAMEL / Eric RADFORD CAN 71.44 38.44 34.00 8.61 8.39 8.43 8.57 8.50 1.00 #3
4 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 70.84 38.70 32.14 7.93 7.75 8.21 8.07 8.21 0.00 #1
5 Natalia ZABIIAKO / Alexander ENBERT RUS 65.79 34.40 31.39 7.86 7.64 7.89 7.93 7.93 0.00 #4
6 Julianne SEGUIN / Charlie BILODEAU CAN 60.86 31.49 31.37 7.82 7.79 7.64 8.00 7.96 2.00 #5

Free Skate

 Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Evgenia TARASOVA / Vladimir MOROZOV RUS 135.25 66.05 69.20 8.64 8.54 8.68 8.68 8.71 0.00 #6
2 Meagan DUHAMEL / Eric RADFORD CAN 134.55 65.99 68.56 8.57 8.50 8.46 8.68 8.64 0.00 #4
3 Xiaoyu YU / Hao ZHANG CHN 131.37 63.64 68.73 8.64 8.43 8.61 8.64 8.64 1.00 #5
4 Julianne SEGUIN / Charlie BILODEAU CAN 125.99 62.69 64.30 8.04 7.93 8.04 8.00 8.18 1.00 #1
5 Natalia ZABIIAKO / Alexander ENBERT RUS 122.53 61.27 61.26 7.71 7.46 7.61 7.82 7.68 0.00 #2
6 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 112.35 54.97 59.38 7.54 7.32 7.21 7.61 7.43 2.00 #3

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SP FS
1 Evgenia TARASOVA / Vladimir MOROZOV
RUS
213.85 1 1
2 Xiaoyu YU / Hao ZHANG
CHN
206.71 2 3
3 Meagan DUHAMEL / Eric RADFORD
CAN
205.99 3 2
4 Natalia ZABIIAKO / Alexander ENBERT
RUS
188.32 5 5
5 Julianne SEGUIN / Charlie BILODEAU
CAN
186.85 6 4
6 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN
CHN
183.19 4 6

2016 NHK Trophy Pairs Results

Short Program

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 73.33 41.29 32.04 7.96 7.82 8.07 8.11 8.07 0.00 #4
2 Meagan DUHAMEL / Eric RADFORD CAN 72.95 39.53 34.42 8.68 8.43 8.57 8.68 8.68 1.00 #2
3 Xuehan WANG / Lei WANG CHN 65.66 35.17 30.49 7.61 7.36 7.64 7.79 7.71 0.00 #6
4 Mari VARTMANN / Ruben BLOMMAERT GER 61.23 32.77 28.46 7.18 7.04 7.04 7.21 7.11 0.00 #3
5 Tarah KAYNE / Danny O’SHEA USA 57.02 30.59 28.43 7.21 7.14 6.86 7.25 7.07 2.00 #7
6 Sumire SUTO / Francis BOUDREAU-AUDET JPN 52.65 28.23 25.42 6.50 6.14 6.25 6.50 6.39 1.00 #5
7 Miriam ZIEGLER / Severin KIEFER AUT 52.19 28.50 25.69 6.61 6.25 6.21 6.61 6.43 2.00 #1

Free Skate

 Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Meagan DUHAMEL / Eric RADFORD CAN 131.61 64.59 67.02 8.39 8.29 8.21 8.64 8.36 0.00 #6
2 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 123.54 61.30 64.24 8.18 7.93 7.82 8.18 8.04 2.00 #7
3 Xuehan WANG / Lei WANG CHN 119.66 59.03 60.63 7.71 7.36 7.61 7.64 7.57 0.00 #4
4 Tarah KAYNE / Danny O’SHEA USA 115.18 57.12 58.06 7.25 7.14 7.25 7.29 7.36 0.00 #3
5 Miriam ZIEGLER / Severin KIEFER AUT 109.72 58.44 52.28 6.68 6.32 6.50 6.71 6.46 1.00 #1
6 Mari VARTMANN / Ruben BLOMMAERT GER 109.47 53.13 57.34 7.36 7.00 7.11 7.25 7.11 1.00 #5
7 Sumire SUTO / Francis BOUDREAU-AUDET JPN 109.20 56.61 52.59 6.71 6.36 6.61 6.68 6.50 0.00 #2

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SP FS
1 Meagan DUHAMEL / Eric RADFORD
CAN
204.56 2 1
2 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN
CHN
196.87 1 2
3 Xuehan WANG / Lei WANG
CHN
185.32 3 3
4 Tarah KAYNE / Danny O’SHEA
USA
172.20 5 4
5 Mari VARTMANN / Ruben BLOMMAERT
GER
170.70 4 6
6 Miriam ZIEGLER / Severin KIEFER
AUT
161.91 7 5
7 Sumire SUTO / Francis BOUDREAU-AUDET
JPN
161.85 6 7

2016 Cup of China Pairs Results

Short Program

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Xiaoyu YU / Hao ZHANG CHN 72.49 40.84 31.65 8.14 7.68 8.00 7.93 7.82 0.00 #1
2 Liubov ILYUSHECHKINA / Dylan MOSCOVITCH CAN 71.28 38.97 32.31 8.04 7.96 8.07 8.18 8.14 0.00 #3
3 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 69.93 39.36 30.57 7.54 7.43 7.71 7.75 7.79 0.00 #6
4 Xuehan WANG / Lei WANG CHN 66.45 36.51 29.94 7.54 7.25 7.64 7.46 7.54 0.00 #5
5 Nicole DELLA MONICA / Matteo GUARISE ITA 66.39 36.21 30.18 7.61 7.25 7.64 7.61 7.61 0.00 #7
6 Yuko KAVAGUTI / Alexander SMIRNOV RUS 62.90 32.53 31.37 7.96 7.75 7.64 8.00 7.86 1.00 #4
7 Mari VARTMANN / Ruben BLOMMAERT GER 60.88 33.16 28.72 7.21 7.07 7.11 7.25 7.25 1.00 #8
8 Jessica PFUND / Joshua SANTILLAN USA 50.32 25.03 26.29 6.61 6.50 6.50 6.64 6.61 1.00 #2

 

Free Skate

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Xiaoyu YU / Hao ZHANG CHN 131.27 66.05 66.22 8.36 8.04 8.21 8.39 8.39 1.00 #7
2 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN CHN 128.03 64.50 63.53 7.96 7.71 8.07 7.96 8.00 0.00 #5
3 Liubov ILYUSHECHKINA / Dylan MOSCOVITCH CAN 120.26 57.32 63.94 8.00 7.96 7.75 8.14 8.11 1.00 #8
4 Xuehan WANG / Lei WANG CHN 115.57 56.97 59.60 7.57 7.32 7.36 7.54 7.46 1.00 #6
5 Mari VARTMANN / Ruben BLOMMAERT GER 113.00 57.10 56.90 7.21 7.00 7.00 7.21 7.14 1.00 #1
6 Yuko KAVAGUTI / Alexander SMIRNOV RUS 112.63 49.67 62.96 7.89 7.75 7.71 8.00 8.00 0.00 #4
7 Nicole DELLA MONICA / Matteo GUARISE ITA 109.99 52.49 58.50 7.39 7.21 7.07 7.46 7.43 1.00 #3
8 Jessica PFUND / Joshua SANTILLAN USA 92.09 43.91 51.18 6.57 6.39 6.21 6.50 6.32 3.00 #2

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SP FS
1 Xiaoyu YU / Hao ZHANG
CHN
203.76 1 1
2 Cheng PENG / Yang JIN
CHN
197.96 3 2
3 Liubov ILYUSHECHKINA / Dylan MOSCOVITCH
CAN
191.54 2 3
4 Xuehan WANG / Lei WANG
CHN
182.02 4 4
5 Nicole DELLA MONICA / Matteo GUARISE
ITA
176.38 5 7
6 Yuko KAVAGUTI / Alexander SMIRNOV
RUS
175.53 6 6
7 Mari VARTMANN / Ruben BLOMMAERT
GER
173.88 7 5
8 Jessica PFUND / Joshua SANTILLAN
USA
142.41 8 8

2016 Cup of China Pairs Preview

Savchenko/Massot and Tarasova/Morozov have qualified for the Grand Prix Final.  It’s looking like the qualification bar for pairs might be lower than the other events as several teams have medaled at one event but failed to make the podium at another.

Yu and Zhang took home a silver medal from their debut at Skate Canada. While most teams are moving to quads and difficult throw and side by side jumps this team has none of that yet.  However, they did have Level 4 on almost all of their elements, including the twist and death spiral.  They also earned mostly positive GOEs, netting nearly 11 points.  They also had almost all their program components in the 8s, even more impressive for a new team.  They scored over 200 points in the first event of their career together.  They need a gold, silver, bronze or 4th place finish to qualify for the Final.  They have the 6th best short program, 5th best free skate and 5th best total scores.

Iliushechkina and Moscovitch won the bronze medal at Skate Canada.  Their free skate at that event was a little rough with two falls and a missed combination jump.  They do have a triple lutz throw and received Level 4s on everything but the twist and death spiral.  They need a gold or silver medal to qualify for the Final.  They have the 8th best short program and 9th best total scores.

Kavaguti and Smirnov finished 5th at Skate Canada after returning from injury.  They are capable of doing throw quads but didn’t attempt them at that event.  They had problems with both of their side by side jumps in the free skate, but earned all positive GOEs for the duration of the program.  Their program components were low, especially for such an experienced team, with three in the 7 point range.  They need a gold medal to keep themselves in consideration for the Final.  They have the 7th best short program score.

Peng and Jin are a new Chinese team that were formed from the Chinese federation’s dissolution of Peng/Zhang and Yu/Jin.  Yu and Zhang were paired together and were the stronger pair the Federation desired.  However, Peng and Jin are both good skaters in their own right and if they have gelled as a team as well as Yu and Zhang, they should be very competitive here.  If they find themselves on the medal stand, they have a chance of qualifying for the Final next week in Japan.

Della Monica and Guarise finished 6th at Skate Canada.  They cannot qualify for the Final but they could find themselves on the podium.  They have the 8th best free skate score.

The best short program score so far this season is 78.39 with the top 10 all scoring above 67 points.  The best free skate score is 139.91 with the top 10 scoring above 123.  The best total score is 218.30 with the top 10 scoring above 188.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Yu/Zhang

Silver: Iliushechkina/Moscovitch

Bronze: Peng/Jin

 

Bios of the competitors:

Iliushechkina/Moscovitch, CAN: They placed 7th at Worlds and 5th at Four Continents.  They won bronze at Skate Canada.  Their personal best is 199.52.  She is 25 and he is 32.

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

Wang/Wang, CHN: They finished 15th at Worlds.  They placed 5th at Skate America and 4th at Cup of China last season.  Their personal best is 186.76.  She is 18 and he is 28.

Yu/Zhang, CHN: They won silver at Skate Canada.  Their personal best is 202.08.  She is 20 and he is 32.

Vartmann/Blommaert, GER: They placed 8th at Europeans.  They finished 6th at Cup of China last season.  Their personal best is 177.04.  She is 27 and he is 24.

Della Monica/Guarise, ITA: They finished 11th at and 6th at Europeans.  They finished 6th at Skate Canada.  Their personal best is 191.98.  She is 27 and he is 28.

Kavaguti/Smirnov, RUS: They finished 5th at Skate Canada.  They are the 2009 and 2010 World Bronze Medalists, 2010 and 2015 European Champions, 2009 and 2011 European Silver Medalists, and 2008 European Bronze Medalists.  She is 34 and he is 32.

Pfund/Santillan, USA: They placed 8th at Skate America last season.  Their personal best is 151.40.  She is 18 and he is 24.