In no particular order:
Moiseeva & Minenkov
Regoeczy & Sallay
Torvill & Dean
Grishuk & Platov (especially their freedance from 1997 Europeans)
Moniotte & Lavanchy
Anissina & Peizerat
Denkova & Staviski
Regarding the current skaters, the jury is still out.
Grishuk and Platov, by far! they will never be matched, IMO.
Originally Posted by daphna
And Usova/Zhulin, Navka.
Oh, so many.
It was the Duchesnays, Klimova/Ponomarenko, and Usova/Zhulin who got me fascinated by the sport.
Have to include Torvill/Dean and Rahkomo/Kokko as well.
Others I've had a soft spot for:
I could name more
I remember once dreaming that Delobel/Schoenfelder were my third favorite French ice dance team. When I woke up, I was amused that that was actually correct (see other French teams listed above)
At the top of my list are Klimova-Ponomarenko. No other ice dance team combined technical perfection with such passion on the ice. Their Tchaikovsky 5th symphony (pro) is one of my most favorite ice dances ever. Their Bach FD (92) is one of the best ice dances ever.
Torville-Dean (I loved their creativity, and of course Bolero)
Grishchuk-Platov (incredible speed and difficulty in their programs)
Usova-Zhulin (balletic positions and lines)
Krylova-Ovssianikov (what a pity their career ended early due to Anjelika's injury; I loved their long lines and passion)
Annenko-Sretenski (gorgeous lines, deep edges)
David & White are my most favorite
Virtue-Moir are a close second
Delobel-Schoenfelder (for their creativity)
I just went back and watched Klimova and Ponomarenko's chaikovsky's Fifth Symphony program. They were so sublime. The fact that she looked like a pre-Raphaelite painting and he looked like a premier danseur noble (as Anton Sikharulidze did among pairs skaters) didn't hurt at all. But even more significant than that was their emotional bond. Like Gordeyeva/Grinkov, they created such strong chemistry together that every program had meaning. Their purity of technique, their inventiveness, especially as pros, lifted them above their competitors. I always found it interesting that he seemed to have a turnout while she didn't, or at least she didn't use one. He often did beautiful spreadeagles, while her feet always pointed in the same direction. With Bereshnaya/Sikharulidze it was the opposite, as I recall. She would do a bit of a backbend in a spreadeagle position, and he would brace her with his arms but have different leg postions from hers.
Anyway, as far as I'm concerned, Klimova/Ponomarenko were probably the best exponent of Russian ice dancing beauty in terms of technique and artistry together. I wouldn't put any other Russian or Soviet couple ahead of them.
leave no stone unturned
I ve never watched ice dance a lot but I remember I used to watch always Anissina and Peizerat because I liked their hair. Later years I liked a lot the Kerrs so I was watching for sometime.
Oh, Seniorita, if you like hair, you should hunt up Klimova/Ponomarenko. Hers is like out of a painting by Edward Burne-Jones, and his isn't bad either. Their programs from the pro years are more free-form and less traditionally ice dance-ish, and they might appeal to you. Even in their amateur career they were not as traditional, because the rules of the era allowed for more innovation and a broader interpretation of ice dance.
They're very dramatic and romantic, almost like pairs skaters without the jumps.
On the Ice
I loved Klim/Pon. Egads, so many wonderful Russian ice dancers. Was astounded when Torvill/Dean showed you didn't have to be Russian to win. It reallyis depressing when the same country wins all the time.
Things really started to change when other countries challenged legitimately - Den/Sta, Rak/Kho, Drob/Van and even North Americans! Woo! Wilson/McCall laid the groundwork for me but then Bourne/Kraatz really did it. What inspiration! And now we have Virtue/Moir! Truly love the American development - Roca/Sur, Punsalan/Swallow, Lang/Tsern and now Davis/White. Another wow!
I remember Paul Martini publicly taking the judges to task for treating Pun/Swallow poorly. I loved him for that!
I absolutely loved this ice dance team. I was so disappointed when Pekarek decided not to skate competitively anymore!
Originally Posted by Mathman
In order of all time favorites:
Torvill and Dean
Grishuk & Platov
Wicked Yankee Girl