I went to see the ladies Free skate and was very curious about Kimmie, Mao and the others as this was only my second "live" competition...
First of all, TEB is really a nice venue and it was great to see so many people coming as last time (a couple of years ago) the arena was almost empty..Obviously, Joubert has many fans and it was a pity he had to pull out.
From the first group it was all about Mira.I have read so much about her and was pleasently surprised, she is like a cat on the ice!I liked the program and she seems to be quite flexible with really nice spirals.Her choice of music demands a lot from the skater but I thought it was well choreographed and she did it nicely.I did not think she was "sloppy" as many has mentionned but mabye a bit "unfinished"?If she can take her time on every element and rush a little bit less, I am sure the scores will go up!
Things started to get exciting when the warm up stated for the second group.I found myself looking at Mao all the time, she was stroking so softly..Felt that she was quite focused.Her jumps looked effortless and I think she tried 2 or 3 3A, one of them looked very good.
I have never really been a fan of Kimmies skating (except the spanish program last year) but I honestly thought that she looked really good!She went for the 3x3 a couple of times but fell on the 2nd jump, otherwise not bad jump wise.She is a powerful skater and so fast on the ice..
Ashley looked good too and it was great seeing her as I have been a fan since last Jr Worlds.
Over to the competition;
Of course, Ashley impressed everyone with her skate and boy, this girl can jump!She seems to be such a "complete" skater and really sold her program very well.The public loved her and It does look good for the future.
Then on to poor Sarah..the jumps were not there but I just loved her choreography and she is so elegant on the ice (Remains me about Kwan..) Beautiful lines and you got the feeling that you see a "woman" skating, nothing girlish there.
So sorry to read in the other thread about Kimmies jump problem because I found her program very interesting and quite different from the others as she does not have the flexibility as other skaters and mabye not any "highlights"in her program but still I found myself emotional after her skate!I think, that if she can get her jumps back on track this program is strong, very strong.
Mao,Mao..yes, she is good but I do not think thet she deserves any higher presentation marks than Sarah or Kimmie..She is tricky to get connected to..difficult to explain.I've got exactly the same feeling as when Shizuka tried to use this music.It is very "dark" and "deep" music and both Mao and Shiz are such gentle skaters that "you" really need to try to connect to "them".
Lovley calm program but I got the feeling that she needs the
3A and 3x3 (same feeling with Shiz program at the time) to highlight the program..I was amazed about the footwork and the last 30 seconds are frankly "superbe"!
Well, I enjoyed the competition and how different skaters look "live"!Looking forward to see them again in March