Early Forerunners - Ladies
After assessing Int B events and the Grand Prix Series I thought I would make a start of the favourites for the upcoming European Championships to be held in Sheffield - GB.
Favourite: Carolina Kostner - Italy
Great choice of programs this year for Carolina (as like last year) she has scaled down her technical repertoire which has helped her mentally and she has slowed slightly to adjust her timing on her jumps, good speed and flow and excellent transitions. Artistry is beautiful, a maturity on the ice.
Closest Challenger: Alena Leonova - Russia
Seems to be getting better as the season progresses, strong points are her mental toughness and a strong flair on the ice - full of emotion, needs to still work on the transitions but her 3+3 is good. finally a medal at Europeans for Alena - possibly Gold.
Elene Gedevanishvili - Georgia, Her change of coach has helped her, her spins and steps very good and her triple lutz is probably one of the best.
Viktoria Helgesson - Sweden - Has worked very hard this year and as always (like Caro) her artistry is lovely and a maturity on the ice - a diva. Her jumps seemed to let her down but she is renowned as a free skater, if she puts the jumps together she will be a threat. Programs are also lovely this year.
Elena Glebova - Estonia I thought I put Elena in because on evidence of her B Events she has improved very much (like Elene the change of coach has done her good) she seems to be more faster and her 3+3 is as good as Alena. Her SP in particular is very good. I see a top 8 finish for her next year.
Adelina Sotnikova - Russia, I am assuming she is eligible this year (unlike Liza) she reminds me a lot of Yu Na Kim and on evidence of the grand prix circuit a force to be reckoned with, but making the transition to senior level has not been easy for her, but she is the dark horse. She could win or plummet?.
I have not mentioned Kiira Korpi or Laura Lepisto, but Finland could struggle to get on the podium. The first time since 2006 (Finland has medaled between 2007-2011). Laura has struggled with injuries and we do not know whether she will be back and Kirra has had injury problems this year as well and it has showed as she has not had the time to master the timing on her jumps. Beautiful skaters in their own right we hope they will be back strong for 2013.
Last edited by russell30; 12-03-2011 at 07:05 AM.
Adelina Sotnikova is not eligible, she misses it by one day(she was born on July 1, 1996 and the rule is that the skater must be born before July 1 1996 to be eligible this season). But I read somewhere that she was born premature so who knows, maybe one day earlier might have been to early. Plus, she is going through a hard time, who knows, maybe this one day is twice a blessing in disguise
Former figure skater and HUGE figure skating fan.
I agree with your including Elena Glebova. She is actually quite a force to be reckoned with. She puts the difficulty in her programs, has good consistency and isn't a bad performer at all. Definitely one not to count out.
Based on what I saw on the GP, I would LIKE to see Leonova win. Loving both her programs this year and the attack is there. I know this may offend many - and please don't think I'm not a fan because I so am - but I feel Kostner's FS has been greatly hyped this year.
And lastly - not to be a negative Nancy but one skater I'd be SHOCKED to see make any impact this year is Ksenia Makarova. God love her, but that FS is just wrong on so many levels.
first of all, I am surprised that Alena has improved and I really thought she was ready to be dumped by the FSFR with all the pouring talents Russia has now
but she may be sticking for a long time, nevertheless , Carolina Kostner will win it as she has been so far the more consistent and has steadily improved.
Adelina cannot compete but the alternates Sofia Biryukova ? her exposure has been showing her good results Finalandia 1st and CoR 4th
Polina Korobeynikova and Polina Shelepen will now transition from junior to senior next year also are good alternates, they are eligible ?
Ksenia Makarova is out and she will have a hard time now competing with all the new Russian Skaters
Agreed. The thing I don't understand about the program is why it happened. Ksenia has Liza, Adelina, and all the other wunderkind coming up, just ready to take her place (btw, I'm not talking about her spot Euros or Worlds; idk who is & isn't age eligible. I'm just mean "place" as an idea). In a situation like this, normally, one would try to show that he or she has maturity on their side. But, Ksenia, on the other hand, decides to go with a FS that looks like she's playing dress up. I just don't get it.
Originally Posted by n_halifax
Say what you will about Alena's programs, but at least you can see some sensible thought behind their conception:
PoC - "Something fun & quirky that's right in my wheelhouse!"
AfS & RfaD - "It's dark & subdued & and new for me!"
The programs may not have turned fantastically, but, again, you can see why she chose them (& it doesn't hurt that she sells the crap out of 'em!).
Now that I've throughly dug into the poor girl, I feel I should say that Ksenia's SP does look beautiful. Here's hoping she'll be able to perform it cleanly!
Last edited by claphappy; 12-16-2011 at 08:25 PM.
Laura Lepisto will miss the whole season. I hope she will come back some day
is any of the junior Russians (Shelepen, Lipnitskaia, etc.) eligible?
Carolina should win easily. i love her programms, esp. the short.
i think that the only one eligible is byriukova
Originally Posted by daphna
Not actually. Shelepen, Korobeinikova, Agafonova, Ovcharova are all eligible as well.
Originally Posted by figureskate
I think Carolina will take gold, and battle for silver and bronze will be between three Russians, Korpi and maybe Gedevanishvili
I think it is PCS that has grown for Carolina over last season. At worlds where Carolina made big mistakes in both SP and FS but was able to beat Leonova very narrowly because of PCS and the fact that Leonova also had some mistakes. Now I think Kostner is getting higher PCS than she was last season for her programs and can afford some mistakes and still beat Leonova even if she didn't make mistakes. Leonova is in the mix for a medal moreso than she was last year. At Euros last year she came in third in the free skate after having a bad SP and hopefully that will not happen and Leonova will have a good sp and LP and win silver.
Top 14 maybe:
Carolina Kostner (ITA)
Valentina Marchei (ITA)
Alena Leonova (RUS)
Ksenia Makarova (RUS)
Polina Korobeynikova (RUS)
Kiira Korpi (FIN)
Juulia Turkkila (FIN)
Elena Glebova (EST)
Elene Gedevanishvili (GEO)
Viktoria Helgesson (SWE)
Mae Berenice Meite (FRA)
Sonia Lafuente (ESP)
Jenna McCorkell (GBR)
Sarah Hecken (GER) - I don't know if she's injured or not... She had a surgery in autumn.
What about Ira Vannut? she was lovely last year, but i haven't seen her in the field for a while
Originally Posted by Shaba22
Yes, what happened to Ira Vannut, she has not competed this season, she must be injured - Any news on Belgian Nationals?
^^read a loosely translated article, seems that Belgian Nationals already took place, the winner was Isabelle Pieman (her 3rd title). And yes, Vannut has been dealing with an injury this season, but according to the article, Belgian officials will decide by early January which two ladies, of three (Kaat Van Daele, Isabelle Pieman, and Ira Vannut), will go to Euros. So it seems Vannut is still training?, just not sure what condition she is or what injury she has. The article was more centered around Daele but also giving the impression that even the officials don't know how Vannut is.
Daele is a 4x medalist at Belgian Nationals (3rd in 2009, 2nd 2010-2012)
Pieman is 7x medalist, and 3x Champion (2007, 2010, 2012)
Vannut (won in 2011)
Interesting quote though at the end by Daele:
"My childhood was not the same as that of my peers. I do not complain about it because skating is my life. I'm glad I got in my pocket optician diploma. For my sport, I was born in the wrong country. The federation does not support euros. I do not blame them because the resources for a sport like figure skating are simply zero."
It seems she also feels that Belgian skating will be in a great void once Kevin van der Perren retires because he's the only name people recognize in skating, and that skating in Belgian will definitely have no support once he is gone.
Last edited by reynycpr; 12-31-2011 at 04:55 PM.
Wicked Yankee Girl
Well, there is an up and coming junior in Belgium, Jorik Hendrickx, who shows some promise. However, I believe he ages out this year.
This year he was 4th at Coupe de Nice and 2nd at Crystal Skate of Brasov in Juniors.