Wednesday, 25/4/2018 | : : UTC-7
Skate Today

Rostelecom Cup: USA / RUSSIA / GREAT BRITAIN ICE DANCERS SPLIT PODIUM

Madeline Chock+Evan Bates (USA) danced off with the gold medal and set a free dance personal best score of 105.42, over three points higher than at Skate America.

The reining US silver medalist looked confident and secure with Level4 lifts, spins and twizzles.  The footwork received Level3.  They were nicked for a one point extended lift deduction.

After winning their second GP gold medal with a modern interpretation of the Gene Kelly classic, An American in Paris, the duo punched their tickets to the GP Final in Barcelona, Spain.

“We evaluate our performance based on our last one, and so looking back at Skate America this was definitely a step up.  It felt like a stronger performance.  We gained higher levels, so technically it was better, but also emotionally it felt stronger,” Bates shared.

“This is our first GP Final together. * This is a good way going into the Final.  We’ve been building some momentum,” added Chock.

*   Junior Grand Prix Finals

  • 2006 – Evan Bates (partner Emily Samualson) – silver medal
  • 2007 – Evan Bates (partner Emily Samualson) – silver medal
  • 2008 – Madeline Chock (partner Greg Zuerlein) – gold medal

The new team of Elena Iinykh+Ruslan Zhiganshin (RUS) was 2nd in the Short Dance, but took the silver medal in spite of a 3rd place free.

The partnership was created after the Olympics when both former partners chose to skate with one another.

The Moscow trained team earned the same Levels as they did at the Cup of China competition last week – Level4 twizzles and Straight Line Lift, Level3 footwork and Level1 for the combination spin.  The difference was the GOE scores were almost 4 points higher at the Rostelecom Cup. They also corrected their extended lift deduction.

Ilinykh was less dramatic than the previous competition; the emotions were more channeled. The team was received with a 12-point higher score.

“It was a bit hard today in the free dance because it did not go without some minor errors.  We tried to correct as much as possible the mistakes we did in our previous competition and pay more attention to this. Overall I think we coped with the program,” said Zhiganshin at the post-event press conference.

Penny Coomes+Nicholas Buckland (GBR) slipped down to 3rd overall after a 2nd place free program. The total point difference was 2.41.

This season, the team known for its lifts and athleticism has reinvented its choreography to highlight the transitions in between the elements.  Instead of just skating to music, the music accents their skating with strategically located movements.

Buckland played on the music to create a unique opening series of moves as he carried Coomes into the Curve Lift.  The dramatic montage was rewarded with 6.04 points. The team earned Level4 lifts, twizzles, and spins.  The footwork was Level3. The 2014 European bronze medalists earned a personal best 98.47 for the free skate.

The musical selection for 2014-15 is very different from the Michael Jordan medley used in the previous Olympic season.  It includes “Exogenesis” Part 1 and “Hurricanes and Butterflies” by the British rock band Muse. Coomes’ costume shows off the butterflies’ theme.

Victoria Sinitsina+Nikita Katsalapov (RUS) placed 4th in both programs. The newly formed team received a wide range of element levels – twizzles (1), lifts (2), (3), (4) and footwork (2), (3) in their 2014 GP debut.

The blues program skated to “Did You Ever Feel Lonely?” opened with speed, but lost its energy as it progressed. The moves were tentative and lacked confidence.

Alexandra Stepanova+Ivan Bukin (RUS) placed 5th in both programs after winning a bronze medal at Skate America. The free was skated to “Eleanor Rigby” made famous by the Beatles.

The lifts and spins were Level4, while the Twizzles like at Skate America earned only a Level1.  The step sequences received Level2 and 3. They also lost a point for an extended lift deduction.

Kaitlin Hawayek+Jean-Luc Baker (USA) finished 6th in their Senior GP debut.  The 2014 Junior World champions skated to Romeo & Juliet and earned Level4 for thetwizzles and two lifts.  The Diagonal Step Sequence was Level2, but the remaining elements were Level3.

The team’s technical mark was the third highest in the free dance competition.

The Rostelecom Cup ice dancers will compete again at the following:

  • Coomes+Buckland (GBR) – NHK Trophy
  • Sinitsina+Katsalapov (RUS) – NHK Trophy
  • Hawayek+Baker (USA) – NHK Trophy

Chock+Bates (USA) earned a position at the GP Final.

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