Anne Calder

ALEXANDRA PAUL and MITCHELL ISLAM

.Mitch Islam… “Some big changes for me and @alexandrapaul_!”

… And so the twitter and skating learned that ice dancers Alexandra Paul+Mitchell Islam (CAN) had moved to Montreal to train with Marie France Dubreuil, Patrice Lauzon, and Romain Haguenauer.

The 2010 World Junior silver medalists and three-time Canadian bronze medalists teamed up in 2009. In 2012, they left Toronto and moved to Detroit to train with Angelika Krylova and Pasquale Comerlengo.

They placed 14th in the Free Dance at the 2015 World Championship and voiced concern.

‘Today was difficult for us out there technically. We made a few mistakes. It really cost us at the end. When we get back, we’ll have meetings, and evaluate the season and see what we get from that,” said Paul.

At the Gadbois Center, Paul+Islam joined an international group of ice dancers including 2015 World Champions Gabriella Papadakis+ Guillaume Cizeron (FRA), Sara Hurtado+Adria Diaz (ESP), Lawrence Fournier Beaudry+Nikolai Sorensen (DEN) and Madison Hubbell+Zachary Donohue USA), who recently moved north of the border from Detroit.

The team is satisfied with their move.

“Major changes are never easy, nor are the decisions that precede them, but we’re confident after only a few days here that it is absolutely the right thing for us to do,” said Islam in his tweet.

Dubreuil and Lauzon are the 2006 and 2007 World silver medalists. Haguenauer was a coach and choreographer in Lyon, France prior to joining the Montreal team in July, 2014.

 

VICTOR KRAATZ INDUCTED INTO SKATE CANADA BC/YK HALL OF FAME

Ice dancer, Victor Kraatz, was one of four inducted into the Skate Canada BC / YK Section of the Hall of Fame on May 2, 2015 at the Annual Awards Banquet held at the Delta Burnaby Hotel in Vancouver, BC.

Television analyst and 1988 Olympic bronze medalist, Tracy Wilson, and BC Section Executive Director, Ted Barton, hosted the event.

Kraatz shared the evening with his wife, Maikki, sons Oliver and Henry, and mother, Dagmar, who in a prerecorded video spoke about how her son had become involved in the skating world.

A Riverdance video montage caused a thunderous cheer and eruption of clapping to the beat of the familiar music.

The final video highlighted Kraatz and his partner  Shae-Lynn Bourne’s journey that spanned a dozen years and included gold medals in 10 Canadians, 3 Four Continents, 2 GPFs and the 2003 World Championships, which was the first in ice dancing for North America.

With a room full of cheers and a standing ovation, an emotion-filled Victor Kraatz headed to the podium sharing hugs on his way with Tracy Wilson and presenters, BC figure skaters, Jeremy Ten and Nicole Orford.

Awards were also presented to skaters, coaches, officials and volunteers.

Victor Kraatz was born in West Berlin, Germany (1971) and lived in Switzerland before moving to Canada with his mother. He teamed up with Shae-Lynn Bourne in 1991. The team popularized the figure skating move of hydroblading, where they leaned so deep on their edges to be almost parallel to the ice. The adaptation of authentic Irish step dancing in their 1997-1998 Riverdance routine was a break away from the more dramatic programs and left a lasting stamp on ice dancing.

“If you want to make a difference in sport, you’ve always got to push the envelope,” voiced Kraatz.

Victor Kraatz is currently a hockey-specific skating instructor in North Vancouver, British Columbia.

 

USA WINS THIRD WORLD TEAM TROPHY

The final day of competition was a nail-biter with Team USA holding on to gold by a single point, and Russia overtaking Japan for silver and its first World Team Trophy medal. The events included Pairs and Ladies Free Programs.

PAIRS’ FREE PROGRAMS:

  1. Meagan Duhamel+Eric Radford (CAN)
  2. Wenjing Sui+Cong Han (CHN)
  3. Alexa Scimeca+Chris Knierim (USA)

LADIES’ FREE PROGRAMS:

  1. Elizaveta Tuktamysheva (RUS)
  2. Satoko Miyahara (JPN) SB
  3. Elena Radionova (RUS)

 FINAL PLACEMENTS

1) TEAM USA, 2) TEAM RUSSIA, 3) TEAM JAPAN

4) TEAM CANADA 5) TEAM CHINA, 6) TEAM FRANCE

 THE PERFORMANCES – ON ICE

TEAM USA needed a strong performance from Alexa Scimeca+Chris Knierim to maintain their lead, and they proved worthy of the challenge. Opening with a spectacular quad twist, the 2015 US National Champions moved up to 3rd place and grabbed 10 points. Ashley Wagner and Gracie Gold placed 4th and 5th respectively and added another 17. The final total = 110 points.

 TEAM RUSSIA used the 23 points earned by the dynamic duo – Elizaveta Tuktamysheva and Elena Radionova to vault over Japan and into second place. The 2015 World Champion, Tuktamysheva landed a 3A and five more clean triples to win the Ladies competition while Radionova  completed seven clean triples enroute to second place. European Pairs Champions, Yuko Kavaguti+Alexander Smirnov slipped down a notch to 4th for 9 points.                            The final total = 109 points.

 TEAM JAPAN was third after an elegant performance by the diminutive Satoko Miyahara to Miss Saigon that included six clean triples and earned 10 points. Kanako Murakami and pair skaters Ami Koga+Francis Boudreau Audet added another 14 points for their sixth place finishes. The final total = 103 points

 TEAM CANADA won the Pairs FP over China by .97 and earned 12 points. While 2015 World Champions Meagan Duhamel+Eric Radford had a higher element base value, the fall on the 4STh and the negative GOE’s on the 3Lz narrowed the gap. The Ladies added 7 points.                    The final total = 82 points.

TEAM CHINA earned 11 points with Wenjing Sui+Cong Han’s second place finish in the Pairs FP. The 2015 World silver medalists’ fast-moving classical program included a quad twist and was marred only my Sui’s doubling the 3S. Zijun Li added another 7 points with her 6th place finish. The final total = 77 points.

TEAM FRANCE earned 14 additional points on the final day. Vanessa James+Morgan Cipres contributed 7 with their 5th place finish in the Pairs’ FP and the Ladies added another 7 points.      The final total = 59 points

 THE PERFORMANCES – IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Evan Bates…USA Team Captain: “This was an amazing competition. Watching, I think, is so much more stressful than being on the ice, especially towards the end. When the ladies were skating, and it started to get really close, and we were not sure what was going to happen, some of the most nerve-racking moments [that] I remember in the sport. It is just thrilling to experience that as a team and to have our fates tied together and to rely on one another is really the essence of this event. It’s wonderful!”

Alexander Smirnov…Russia Team Captain: “Our girls did their job 100%. We could have had more points in pairs and men’s. I think the dancers did their job 100% as well because they are a very young team. However, we are still satisfied with today’s results. We are very happy to be on the podium for the first time at this championship.”

Takahito Mura…Japan Team Captain: “I know all skaters were very tired, but even though they are tired, they put all their energy into their performances and did everything they can in the competition.”

Meagan Duhamel…Canada Team Captain: “Our team came in with the feeling that we didn’t have the expectations to win the gold medal, but everyone was satisfied with their efforts, and we’re building this Canadian team towards the next World Trophy in 2017 and, of course, the Olympics in 2018 where we’ll be aiming for a better result.”

 ICE CHIPS

  •  Yuzuru Hanyu landed a 4Lo+3A in the Exhibition.
  •  TEAM CHINA won the “Spirit” award.
  •  Max Aaron (USA) scored his first career component mark of 75+ points.
  •  Cathy and Chris Reed (JPN) dissolved their partnership. Cathy will retire, and Chris will begin a new partnership search.
  •  2015 World Champion, Javier Fernandez was at WTT to support his training mates – Yuzuru Hanyu and Nam Nguyen
  •  Max Aaron (USA) debuted his 2015-16 season programs at the WTT – “Nessun dorma” (SP) and The Black Swan (FP).

 PERSONAL BEST SCORES AT WORLD TEAM TROPHY

  •  Gracie Gold (USA) SP – 71.26
  • Laurine Lecavelier (FRA) SP – 52.84
  • Satoko Miyahara (JPN) FP – 129.12
  •  Jason Brown (USA) SP – 86.48, FP – 176.69 – Total – 263.17
  • Romain Ponsart (FRA) SP – 63.51, FP – 120.61, Total – 184.12
  •  Wang+Liu (CHN) SD – 55.32, FD – 86.93, Total 142.31
  • Weaver+Poje (CAN) SD – 73.14, Total – 182.93
  •  Koga+Boudreau Audet (CAN) Total – 135.29
  • Scimeca+Knierim (USA) FP – 127.87, Total – 192.09

 HOW THE CAPTAINS WERE SELECTED

  •  Evan Bates (USA) “The athletes voted. It is an honor.”
  •  Takahito Mura (JPN) “ Ito (JSF) selected me to be captain. To be honest, Hanyu should be the captain, but I appreciate Mr. Ito’s choice.”
  •  Alexander Smirnov (RUS) “They chose the one who has the longest beard. I’m joking! I’m one of the oldest and most experienced. It is a big honor and responsibility. I have to look after the younger team mates so nobody oversleeps and misses the bus, and they eat on time and compete”

 

USA MAINTAINS LEAD AFTER SECOND DAY

The second day of the World Team Trophy competition began with the Pairs SP and concluded with the Free Dance and the Men’s Free Program.

PAIRS SP:

  1. Wenjing Sui+Cong Han (CHN)
  2. Meagan Duhamel+Eric Bradford (CAN)
  3. Yuko Kavaguti+Alexander Smirnov (RUS)

FREE DANCE:

  1. Gabriella Papadakis+Guillaume Cizeron (FRA)
  2. Kaitlyn Weaver+Andrew Poje (CAN)
  3. Madison Chock+Evan Bates (USA)

MEN’S FP:

  1. Yuzuru Hanyu (JPN)
  2. Jason Brown (USA)
  3. Takahito Mura (JPN)

 DAY TWO TEAM PLACEMENTS

 The overnight placements did not change at the end of Day 2.

 1) TEAM USA, 2) TEAM JAPAN, 3) TEAM RUSSIA

4) TEAM CANADA 5) TEAM CHINA, 6) TEAM FRANCE

 THE PERFORMANCES…ON ICE

TEAM USA added 35 points to their opening day score and remained on top of the leaderboard. Alexa Scimeca+Chris Knierim earned 9 points for their 4th place SP skate. Jason Brown, 2015 US National champion, landed eight clean triples for 2nd place in the FP and 11 more points. Max Aaron added another five. Madison Chock+Evan Bates slipped to 3rd in the Free Dance after a fall. The 2015 US Dance Champions earned 10 points. Total after Day 2 = 83 pts.

TEAM JAPAN scored 22 points in the Men’s FP when Yuzuru Hanyu’s and Takahito Mura’s placed 1st and 3rd respectively. Hanyu opened with a spectacular 4T and followed up with eight clean triples. Mura under rotated his first quad toe, but followed with a 4T+2T combination. His six triple jumps included a 3A and a 16-point 3A+3T combination. Ami Koga+Francis Boudreau Audet (SP-Pairs) and Cathy Reed+Chris Reed (FD) each earned 7 points with their 6th place finishes. Total after Day 2 = 79 pts.

TEAM RUSSIA’s Yoko Kavaguti+Alexander Smirnov were 3rd in the Pair’s SP after she stumbled on the 3T s-b-s jump. They earned 10 pts. Ice Dancers Elena Ilinykh+Ruslan Zhiganshin placed 4th to get 9 points, while Sergei Voronov and Maxim Kovtun finished 5th and 6th in the Men’s FP and together earned 15 points. Total after Day 2 = 77 pts.

TEAM CANADA earned 11 points for Meagan Duhamel+Eric Radford’s 2nd place in the Pairs SP where she doubled the planned s-b-s 3 Lz. Kaitlyn Weaver+Andrew Poje earned another 11 points for their 2nd place in the Ice Dance FP. The team earned 10 more points from Nam Nguyen’s and Jeremy Ten’s placements. Total after Day 2 = 63 pts.

TEAM CHINA was 5th. Their top scorers were 2015 World silver medalists, Wenjing Sui+Cong Han – 1st in the Pairs SP for 12 points and Han Yan – 4th in the Men’s FP for 9 points.  Total after Day 2 = 59 pts.

TEAM FRANCE won the Free Dance and 12 points with a seamless performance by the 2015 World Ice Dance champions, Gabriella Papadakis+Guillaume Cizeron.  Vanessa James+Morgan Cipres added 8 more points with a 5th place finish in the Pairs SP. Total after Day 2 = 44 pts.

 THE PERFORMANCES…IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Evan Bates…Team Captain USA, 1st place team following Day 2

“Today was a very exciting day. Apart from the ladies, everyone competed today. It was just thrilling. Some of the programs were exceptional, and I think the audience enjoyed it as well.”

Takahito Mura…Team Captain JPN, 2nd place team following Day 2

“I watched the pairs, ice dance and the men; all the skaters skated very well, especially Yuzuru Hanyu, who skated at the end of the day. I think it is very difficult for him. I think the ladies will do vey well, and we’d like to continue to fight until the end of the competition.”

Alexander Smirnov…Team Captain RUS, 3rd place team following Day 2

“Today was another great day, a festival of figure skating. Our whole team skated very well, some surpassed their abilities, others couldn’t quite do that, but the result is good. I would like to congratulate the winners. The placements didn’t change and everything will be decided tomorrow.”

 

TEAM USA TAKES  WTT FIRST DAY LEAD 

The fourth ISU World Team Trophy in Figure skating opened April 16 in Tokyo, Japan with the SD and the Ladies/Men’s Short Programs.

1) TEAM USA (48 pts), 2) TEAM JAPAN (43 pts), 3) TEAM RUSSIA (43 pts)
4) TEAM CANADA (31 pts), 5) TEAM CHINA (27 pts) 6) TEAM FRANCE (21 pts)
Japan was ahead of Russia because of the best result tie breaker.

THE COMPETITION….IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Evan Bates, USA Team Captain…
“This event is very special. You see the way the teams are acting, sitting in the team boxes, cheering for each other. No other competition is like this. You’ve seen the creativity from all the teams [flags, wigs, glasses, and hats]. This is one of the most fun parts of this, just allowing the skaters to show some of their personality. The Japanese fans are the best.”

Takahito Mura, Japan Team Captain…
“We brought some unique Japanese goods such as the Japanese fan, but we had some other fun ideas, like sporting the hairstyle of Japanese Samarai, but we were not courageous enough to do that. The Japanese fans are very enthusiastic. They are doing that for all the skaters, and that is wonderful.”

Alexander Smirnov, Russia Team Captain…
“We want to enjoy this competition as a festival of figure skating. The Japanese fans welcome all the skaters; they have many different flags. We are grateful and enjoy performing in this audience.”

Short Dance:
1. Kaitlyn Weaver+Andrew Poje (CAN) 73.14 (SB)
2. Madison Chock+Evan Bates (USA) 72.17
3. Gabriella Papadakis+Guillaume Cizeron (FRA) 70.86

Ladies’ Short Programs:
1. Gracie Gold (USA) 71.26 (SB)
2. Elizaveta Tutamysheva (RUS) 70.93
3. Elena Radionova (RUS) 68.77

Men’s Short Programs:
1. Yuzuru Hanyu (JPN) 96.27
2. Han Yan (CHN) 87.13
3. Jason Brown (USA) 86.48

THE PERFORMANCES…IN THEIR OWN WORDS

Evan Bates, USA Team Captain…
“Today was a really great day for Team USA. It was a group effort. The competition is far from over; we’re going to need a lot more good skating tomorrow and the next day.

Takahito Mura, Japan Team Captain…
“We only had two weeks since World Champions. I can say for myself that I suffered an injury and other teammates are not in top condition, but we prepared in full spirit for this event.”

Alexander Smirnov, Russia Team Captain…
“I am very happy for my guys; they skated well, but I am also happy for the teams from the US and Japan. We are ready to fight for two more days in good spirit and with fun.”

CANADA WINS WORLD SYNCHRO TITLE ON HOME ICE

The 2015 ISU World Synchronized Skating Championships were held in Hamilton, ON, Canada April 10-11. Twenty-five teams, each with sixteen skaters plus up to four alternates, competed.

Nexxice (Canada 1), from Burlington, ON, Canada, won the SP. Their FP routine to Gershwin’s “Rhapsody in Blue” earned Level4 for six elements and placed 2nd with 143.67 points.

After the Canadians skated, they anxiously waited for both the Finnish teams and Sweden1 to perform. In the end, Nexxice won the nail-biter by a slim .67 points and a total 214.73 score.

The three-time World silver medalists and nine-time consecutive Canadian champions are the only North American team to win the world Synchro championships, and they did it twice – first in 2009 and again in 2015 in Hamilton before 8,000 cheering appreciative Canadian fans.

‘’It was incredible; the crowd showed us so much love,’’ said Laura Désilets. ‘’We didn’t feel any added pressure being in Canada.  We were pleased with both our programs, and we achieved our goals for this season.’’

Marigold Ice (Finland 1) skated a strong FP performance to “Images of War” that included five Level4 elements. The four-time and reigning World champions from Helsinki also scored 143.67 points. They won the FP over Nexxice because of a higher component mark and earned the silver medal with 214.06 total points.

Paradise, (Russia 1) vaulted from 5th place in the SP to a podium bronze medal with a five element Level4 skate to “Polovetsian Dances”. The St. Petersburg team scored 137.23 points for their FP. The 203.48 total points earned Russia its first World Synchro senior medal.

ICE CHIPS

  • Synchronized skating started in the United States, but is now dominated by two Scandinavian countries – Finland and Sweden.
  • The inaugural ISU Synchronized World Championships’ event was held in 2000.
  • The countries that have earned the gold medals are: Finland (8), Sweden (6), and Canada (2).
  • Synchronized skating uses the International Judging System (IJS).
  • Only the top five finishers are allotted a second team at the following Worlds. In 2016, that includes: Canada, Finland, Russia and Sweden.
  • The US teams finished 7th and 8th and will send only one team in 2016.
  • The IOC’s decision to include Synchronized Skating as an Olympic sport is pending a June vote.

 http://www.isuresults.com/results/wcsys2015/

ICE DANCERS HUBBELL and DONOHUE CANADA BOUND

Madison Hubbell+Zachary Donohue have parted ways with their coaches Angelika Krylova and Pasquale Camerlengo at the Detroit Skating Club.

The 2015 US National bronze medalists will train in Montreal, Canada with Marie-France Dubreuil and Patrice Lauzon.

Hubbell+Donohue teamed up in 2011 and together won numerous bronze medals and gold at the 2014 Four Continents.

Hubbell’s surgery and recuperation for a torn hip injury slowed their training regime for the past season. The team was not satisfied with their tenth place finish at Worlds in Shanghai.

At the Gadbois Center, Hubbell+Donohue will join an international group of ice dancers including 2015 World Champions Gabriella Papadakis+ Guillaume Cizeron (FRA), Sara Hurtado+Adria Diaz (ESP), Lawrence Fournier Beaudry+Nikolai Sorensen (DEN) and two Canadian teams.

Marie-France Dubreuil and Patrice Lauzon (CAN) are the 2006 and 2007 World silver medalists.

2015 ISU WORLD TEAM TROPHY

April 16 – 19    TOKYO, JAPAN

 TEAM RUSSIA

Team Captain – Alexander SMIRNOV

Maxim KOVTUN

Sergei VORONOV

Elena RADIONOVA

Elizaveta TUKTAMYSHEVA

Yuko KAVAGUTI+Alexander SMIRNOV

Elena ILINYKH+Ruslan ZHIGANSHIN

 TEAM UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

Team Captain – Evan BATES

Max AARON

Jason BROWN

Gracie GOLD

Ashley WAGNER

Alexa SCIMECA+Chris KNIERIM

Madison CHOCK+Evan BATES

TEAM JAPAN

Team Captain – Takahito MURA

Yuzuru HANYU

Takahito MURA

Satoko MIYAHARA

Kanako MURAKAMI

Ami KOGA+Francis BOUDREAU AUDET

Cathy REED+Chris REED

 TEAM CANADA

Team Captain – Meagan DUHAMEL

Nam NGUYEN

Jeremy TEN

Alaine CHARTRAND

Gabrielle DALEMAN

Meagan DUHAMEL+Eric RADFORD

Kaitlyn WEAVER+Andrew POJE

TEAM FRANCE

Team Captain – Gabriella PAPADAKIS

Florent AMODIO

Romain PONSART

Laurine LECAVELIER

Mae Bernice MEITE

Vanessa JAMES+Morgan CIPRES

Gabriella PAPADAKIS+Guillaume CIZERON

 TEAM CHINA

Team Captain – Cong HAN

Nan SONG

Han YAN

Zijun LI

Ziquan ZHAO

Wenjing SUI+Cong HAN

Shiyue WANG+Xinyu LIU

 INFORMATION / RESULTS

http://www.isu.org/en/single-and-pair-skating-and-ice-dance/calendar-of-events/2015/04/isu-world-team-trophy-2015

 ICE NETWORK COVERAGE

 http://web.icenetwork.com/schedule/2…ld_team_trophy

SCHEDULED (ALL TIMES EASTERN Daylight Time)

4/16/2015 2:15 am Short Dance

4/16/2015 3:35 am Ladies Short Program

4/16/2015 5:40 am Men’s Short Program

4/17/2015 3:00 am Pairs Short Program

4/17/2015 4:25 am Free Dance

4/17/2015 6:00 am Men’s Free Skate

4/18/2015 2:15 am Pairs Free Skate

4/18/2015 3:50 am Ladies Free Skate