Greatest Pairs Skaters of all time? and best competitive amateur pairs programs?
Let the discussion commence!
My vote is surpassingly for Gordeeva and Grinkov, and the greatest pairs programs (amateur) for me include
G & G, Moonlight Sonata, 1994 long program
G & G, Mozart and more classical medley, 1988 Olympic long
Mishkutenok and Dmitriev, Rachmaninoff, 1994 long
Mishkutenok and Dmitriev, Dream of Love, 1992 long
Meno and Sand, Nessun Dorma
Shen and Zhao, 2010 long, Adagio in G Minor, Tomaso Albinoni
Best Pair: G&G
Best Program (tie): M&D 1992 Long at Worlds and S&Z 2003 Long at Worlds
What was S & Z's 2003 program?? I can't remember. I loved them. They really evolved and became so beautifully artistic. and their love story was also beautiful!
Originally Posted by drivingmissdaisy
Belousova and Protopopov.
And here they are in 2005, in their 51st year of performing together.
Tai and Randy. All-time best U.S. pairs skaters.
Originally Posted by wordsworthgirl
I think that was their amazing Turandot program, where she was injured but competed anyway. It was the year they became true artists.
I will add Berezhnaya/Sikharulidze's Chaplin program (just one of many from them), and Sale/Pelletier's Love Story.
G & G.. 1988 SP and LP. Unbelievable!!! I visit those performances every now and then to enjoy--and to remind myself how unbelievably spectacular they are/were!
I could not agree more. Total technical perfection, incredible difficulty, speed, and flow, and such JOY in that little Katia's face.
Originally Posted by Eddie Lee
Here is Shen and Zhao's Turandot, 2003 worlds. The Washington, D.C., crowd was packed with Shen and Zhao fans. The skaters didn't let them down.
I tear up every time I see that. Every time. And it was the same Worlds where Michelle skated to her fifth World Championship. An intoxicating competition.
Originally Posted by Mathman
Just watched S/Z's program again. Am sniffling and hunting for a Kleenex. They are so sublime.
I think a skater with 3 Olympic Golds and something like 11 straight WC's might be worth considering.
Irina Rodnina. Two different partners... but heck, she could have skated with me and still won. She was that electrifying.
I absolutely agree that Tai and Randy are by far the best US pairs skaters of all time and one of the greatest pairs of all time. But they're not up there in the upper upper pantheon with G and G, M and D, S and Z, and the Protopopovs.
Originally Posted by Mathman
Second best US pair ever in my opinion is Meno and Sand.
Both Tai and Randy and Jenni and Todd were coached by John Nicks. Coincidence? Methinks not!
Gotta Have Music
Of the teams who were great before I seriously started to follow figure skating - The Protopopovs (amazing that they're still skating!), Rodnina & Zaitsev (I'll never forget Uncle Dickie's speechless comments on ABC's Magic Memories on Ice, volume 1 - "I believe the music has stopped" - during a World Championship, and they kept on skating their program to the end - I *think* Irina was skating with Zaitsev @ those Worlds, not her previous partner, but please correct me if I'm wrong).
Tai & Randy - heartbreaking about their withdrawal in Lake Placid 1980 Olympics (BTW, Is Tai still engaged to David Brenner?)
G&G - 1988 Olympic free skate, 1994 -Moonlight Sonata
M&D - 1992, 1994
Shen & Zhao - 2003 Worlds - Turandot - we were so lucky to be there, sitting in a section of a "sea" of Chinese flags - I them to pieces! I was jumping up & down wildly waving the 6.0 sign/fan that Chevy distributed, and got on TV (probably because there were so many Chinese flags in our section). What a spectacular competition/moment for them!
John Nicks has a legacy of students who have given wonderful performances. I would go back to Starbuck and Shelley and the performance they skated at 1971 Worlds in Lyon. The crowd obviously felt that the 5.6 they received and bronze medal were undermarked and wrongly under-placed respectively. Babilonia and Gardner's 1979 Worlds win in Vienna of course is iconic.