The Future of Russia (Ladies)
So I was just noticing recently, there has been an influx of talented female skaters in Russia and I was just curious to hear what people thought of these girls and who they think will go far in the years leading up to Sochi. Among them are:
Alena Leonova (19): 1st 2009 Junior Worlds, 7th 2009 Worlds, 3rd 2009 COR, 2nd 2009 NHK, 6th 2009 GPF, 2nd 2010 Russian Nationals, 9th 2010 Olympics, 13th 2010 Worlds
Ksenia Makarova (17): 2nd 2009 JGP US, 3rd 2009 JGP Belarus, 4th 2009 JGPF, 1st 2010 Russian Nationals, 10th 2010 Olympics, 8th 2010 Worlds
Sofia Birukova (15): 6th 2010 Russian Nationals (1st in SP), 7th 2010 Russian Jr Nationals
Polina Shelepen (14): 1st 2009 JGP Budapest, 1st 2009 JGP Belarus, 2nd 2009 JGPF, 3rd 2010 Russian Jr Nationals, 4th 2010 Junior Worlds
Anna Ovcharova (14): 5th 2009 JGP Budapest, 2nd 2009 JGP Poland, 5th 2009 JGPF, 5th 2010 Russian Nationals, 2nd 2010 Russian Jr Nationals, 5th 2010 Junior Worlds (1st in SP)
Polina Agafonova (14): 3rd 2009 JGP Germany, 6th 2009 JGP Poland, 10th 2010 Russian Nationals, 1st 2010 Russian Jr Nationals, 3rd 2010 Junior Worlds --> may switch to pairs
Adelina Sotnikova (13): 1st 2009 Russian Nationals, 1st 2009 Russian Junior Nationals, 4th 2010 Russian Nationals, 6th 2010 Russian Jr Nationals --> JGP eligible next season
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva (13): 2nd 2009 Russian Nationals, 2nd 2009 Russian Junior Nationals, 3rd 2010 Russian Nationals (1st in LP), 4th 2010 Russian Jr Nationals --> JGP eligible next season
Julia Lipiniskaya (11): 5th 2010 Russian Jr Nationals --> shows a lot of promise, amazing spins
I find it interesting because among the junior ladies (Shelepen, Birukova, Ovcharova, Agafonova, Sotnikova, Tutamysheva) they all beat each other at different events. It's hard to say who is better because at every competition it seems like the results are different.
If I had to predict who the forces of the future will be, I'd have to say: Makarova, Tuktamysheva, and Ovcharova. It's so hard to tell though, they are all very good and we will have to see how most of them handle puberty.