big up to wallylutz for the new and improved, non bad google translation!
Here is the proper English translation :
As a part of its colorful history, Figure Skating competitions have always had its share of controversies. After all, what would Figure Skating be without the scandals and the drama? For instance, in 1927 when Sonja Henie won her first world title (out of 10 World titles) in Oslo (on home ice), it was tainted by a controversy. The young Norwegian was favored in a split decision by 3 judges against 2 over the Austrian, Herma Szabo...to be exact, by 3 Norwegian judges.
Since then, the list of controversial decisions has become much longer over the years. For instance, as we saw yesterday, during the inaugural opening of the Team Event in Figure Skating. Russia and Canada, the overwhelming favorites for the Team Gold medal on Sunday, are leading after Men and Pairs SP. Three times World Champion, Patrick Chan, who downgraded his jump combination and stepped out on his Triple Axel, allowed a slower but more successful jumper in Evgeni Plushenko to place slightly ahead. These two skaters are way behind the magnificent Japanese skater, Yuzuru Hanyu. Moments later, a spectacular performance to the Masquerade Waltz performed by V/T was without a doubt better than the respectable performance of D/R. Therefore, it is evident why Russia is currently ahead of Canada.
A Russian Coach : "The United States will help us win the Gold medal in the Team Event and in Pairs"
But one needs to look beyond what meets the eyes. If one were to pay attention since the (Olympic) judges' draw last autumn, it wouldn't be hard to notice the flurry of "activities" and politicking that has been taking place almost like a courtship dance. The various deal exchanges between the so called "friends" reminds us again why Figure Skating may look like a circus on ice. With its share of rumors regarding under-the-table deals or potential future favors / IOU, not surprisingly, Russia is again at the center of most of these speculations, including the most damning ones.
Translator's note : The 3rd paragraph is especially hard to translate. English and French cannot be translated literarly and sometimes, I am forced to combine sentences before translating in order to stay true to the meaning of the author and convey the imagery he intends to get across.
Humiliated over the fact that Russia did not win a single Olympic title (in Figure Skating) at the 2010 Winter Games, Russia intends to avenge this insult by taking at least two OGM at the Sochi Games (in Figure Skating), that is in Team Event and in Pairs, thanks to V/T, the current World Champions in Pairs. In order to better their chances, the host of the 2014 Games has negotiated with many nations. A prominent Russian coach, who requested to remain anonymous, described the deal with the United States : "As we don't have any directly conflicting "interests" per say, they (USA) will help us win the gold medal in the Team Event and in Pairs. In return, we will promise to support Davis/White in Ice Dance over Canadians, Virtue/Moir, as this will mean the first OGM for the USA in Ice Dance."
France and Italy, who both hope to win the Bronze medal (in Ice Dance) have also obtained promise of support from Russia...notwithstanding the fact that there are two Ice Dance duos from Moscow who also hope to win this prize as well. This situation will undoubtedly remind us of the controversy in 2002 caused by Marie-Reine Le Gougne, the French judge in the Pairs event who later disclosed publicly that she deliberately favored the Russians (over the Canadians) as demanded by the President of FFSG - Didier Gailhaguet. The 2002 deal was supposed to be a trade for Russia's vote in favor of Anissina/Peizerat in Ice Dance, except the French were in direct competition with the Russians for the OGM, and the Russian judge obviously did not deliver what was promised to the French and voted in favor of the Russian duo for OGM.
At the end, two Gold medals were awarded in the Pairs event in 2002 while, on other hand, both French officials (Le Gougne and Gailhaguet) have been suspended for 3 years and a new judging system was eventually created. Anissina/Peizerat deserved their Olympic win, the fact is a true victory can withstand the test of time and any close scrutiny post-mortem by other people. Despite all controversies and attempts at manipulating the results, the winner is more often than not, well deserved.
Translator's note: I am not surprised google translate struggles with this particular article. The author is quite knowledgeable, if not well researched about figure skating. She often spoke assuming the audience already knows certain facts and omit those details in her writing such that casual fans who follow figure skating once every 4 years are guaranteed to be lost. L'équipe is a very well respected sports newspaper in france, its status is comparable to sports illustrated in the u.s. So this not some tabloid who reported on anything and everything. Despite the source being anonymous, one can be sure this wasn't made up from thin air.