Prediction for the girls
1. Rachael Flatt. The last outing, she did a great 7 triples LP. I think she's working out all of her jitters and should be a gold medal contender.
2. Mao Asada. Too inconsistent with most of her jumps. The loop, toe, and double axel aren't enough to win here. I predict a 3A attempt with a fall in combination, pop the salchow, fall on either flip/flutz, but wonderful in everything else.
3/4. Kiira Korpi (with the 3T-3T and 3Lp) / Carolina Kostner with her usual fabulous self.
5. Kanako Murakami (very consistent, but can't seem to crack 60 in the SP, her LP score is too low, not yet a factor)
6. Ashley Wagner (probably lower, but my patriotic duty urges me to put her higher)
7. Caroline Zhang (probably lower, too. look at Asada for clue. score in the 70s for the LP)
The rest of them are just there for sushi and mochi and sight seeing.
The European ladies have been struggling, despite a few medals here and there. Mao was a little shaky at the Japan Open, but that may be a one-time occurrence. Caroline is usually top U.S. lady at ISU events, and had reportedly been making improvements all summer. Rachael has been a little weak this summer. So I will say:
It's Mao's to lose. I think Kanako is hungry to prove herself and she is at home. Kiira is doing well so far this year, and who knows which Carolina will show up?
The international judges didn't show much love to Rachael at the end of last season, and she's never been a strong early season skater. As for Caroline, I think her technical issues will hold her back. Ashley will probably make some stupid mistake that will stop her from medaling.
leave no stone unturned
Kanako skated at the Ice Challenge in Graz last season and won. So it´s her second international senior competition, but her first SGP!
Hope she can skate her best ... it´s always so much fun to watch her! Good luck!
It's hard for me to figure out how the three USA Ladies will do.
Or Kiira and Carolina. I agree it is Mao's event to win if she skates at even 75% of her potential.
Based on how the American Ladies did last season in the GP I will go with Ashley for a bronze medal.
I really have no idea how Caroline will do - but feel pretty sure Rachael will be in much better shape than what we saw at the summer events.
Kanako has shown that she can rise to the occassion and since she is a favorite of mine and skating at home I hope she does well.