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    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Mexico City Event Previews

    NOTE: If you are interested in what music these couples are using, the information is in icenetwork bios, ISU bios, or the Cliff Notes 2008 2009 Programs thread in the Edge:


    This is the first Junior Grand Prix competition where we've seen the pairs. The entry list is short, but of high quality. The gold and pewter medallists from the last Junior Worlds, both from Russia will be here. I think you have to expect them to be the top contenders here. Strong contenders for the bronze would be the third Russian pair and the two Chinese pairs.

    1st jr. worlds 148.12
    2nd Sheffield
    3rd Tallinn

    And a great article and interview with them:

    4th world jrs. with a score of 136.14
    4th sheffield
    1st Tailinn 127.69
    They tried their luck at Russian Senior Nationals and finished 8th. Here's a video of an exhibition of theirs:

    2014 stars, moscow

    Anastasia MARTIUSHEVA & Alexei ROGONOV RUS were third in the Russian Junior pairs competition in February with a score of 144.30, which competition Krasilnikova & Bezmaternikh won with a score of 156.25.

    Both of China's entries here are also very strong.

    Yue ZHANG & Lei WANG CHN finished 7th at Jr. Worlds with a score of 130.92.
    3rd sheffield
    3rd Tallinn
    They also competed at Cup of China in last year's Sr. Grand Prix. Here's a video of their charmin Sailor's hornpipe SP:
    Chinese National Champions Competition SP
    2008 LP at CNCC

    The second Chinese pair has not yet been seen internationally, as far as I could tell. However, they have good speed and good height on their twists. They could surprise:
    Duo CHENG & Yu GAO CHN
    2008 SP
    2008 LP 4/5/2008

    Other competitors are:

    Paige LAWRENCE / Rudi SWIEGERS CAN whow were 2nd in Canadian juniors (129.07) and 4th at Chemnitz last year with a scored of 122.98. It was just announced (9/8/08) that Lawrence and Swiegers have withdrawn from this competition.

    Narumi TAKAHASHI / Mervin TRAN JPN who were 6th at Chemnitz and 12th at Tallinn, as well as 15th at Jr. Worlds (113.23)
    sp jr. worlds
    exhibition to Shout

    Sara JONES / Jeremy SANDOR CAN
    5th canadian jrs (112.98)

    The following teams are either new partnerships or just up from novices, so it's hard to know exactly what to expect of them. However, pairs is a very risky discipline. Especially Moore-Towers and Evans and Knierim & Carmen could surprise.

    Kirsten MOORE-TOWERS & Andrew EVANS CAN
    Andrew was 1st canadian jrs in 2007 and 8th world jrs in 2007 with his previous partner.

    Brynn CARMAN / Chris KNIERIM USA were the US Novice Champions this year. Here's their bio:
    They are very proud of their quad twist, which was uploaded to youtube. However, due to Brynn's growth spurt, they will not be performing it in competition at this time:

    Their SP at Indy Challenge. Again, thanks to Sylvia for the link:

    Brittany CHASE &Andrew SPEROFF USA
    were 2nd in Novices at the US Championships. Both of these teams are coached by Dalilah Sappenfield.

    Their biography on icenetwork:

    A youtube of their SP at Indy Challenge (thanks Sylvia, for the link)

    Molly AARON & Daniyel COHEN USA

    Ice Network bio (very incomplete at this time)

    Cohen was 10th at US jrs with his previous partner
    Aaron took a 4th and a 5th place in JGP events in 2005 with a previous partner.


    The CD will be the Starlight Waltz. Here's my reference file for it, including videos performances by top dancers of the past:

    There are only 9 teams confirmed for Mexico City at this time, and the class of the field IMO is:

    Madison HUBBELL & Keiffer HUBBELL USA (Currently 23rd ranked in the world, including srs by the ISU. They were the US Junior Champions last year, finishing 1st in the CD and the FD and third in the OD.

    Ice Network bio:

    They achieved their highest total score 152.47 at Jr. Worlds 2008, where they finished 5th.

    At Lake Placid, they competed in the Open Starlight Waltz:

    They finished first with 32.67 points in the Starlight, ahead of the Shibutanies who scored 31.08.

    and they competed in the Senior OD, where they finished 4th in in their group, scoring 48.50. Here's 2 photos of their costumes. They are skating to Minnie The Moocher by Big Bad Voodoo Daddy

    They finished 1st in the Jr. Free Dance at Lake Placid, skating to
    "Sogniami" (Italian Vocal) (translated it means dream of me) by Alessandro Safina. They scored 73.78. Here's a photo of their costumes:

    And here are some video clips of their last year's programs:
    2008 Jr Worlds CD Cha cha congelado
    2008 Jr Worlds OD German Polka
    2008 Jr Worlds FD Hope by Apocalyptica
    2008 US Nationals EX "Canto Alla Vita"

    The clear favorite for the silver has to be Kharis RALPH & Asher HILL CAN 1 (45th ranked in the World, the 2008 Canadian Junior Champions) who just won the silver medal at Courchevel by earning their best-ever total score of 146.84.

    At Lake Placid, they did not fare nearly as well as they did at Courchevel. Obviously they have improved a lot since then, so they may challenge the Hubbells for the gold.

    At LPIDC their scores were: Starlight Waltz 30.24 OD 41.95 FD 62.49

    Photos of their costumes:
    Starlight Waltz

    Their OD is a Foxtrot: They Can't Take That Away from Me by George and Ira Gershwin
    Their costumes, from LPIDC:

    Their Free Dance this year is And Then There Was Blues - St. James Infirmary Blues
    Their costumes are shown here in photos from LPIDC:

    Perhaps tomorrow, there will be some youtubes available from the Orange Channel's coverage of Courchevel, but until then, only their Jr. Worlds programs are available:

    Folk dance OD 2008 Jr Worlds

    Their icenetwork bio:

    Again, the bronze medal will be hotly contested. However, my best guess is that it will go to Elizaveta TCHETINKINA & Denis SMIRNOV RUS 4 (65th ranked in the World) They finished 6th at Courcheval with 133.12 total score.
    Their ISU biography has still not been filed.

    Other competitors are:

    Rowan MUSSON / Neil BROWN FRA
    This is another newly formed French team. Brown formerly skated with Maureen Ybanez. They were 10th at 2008 Jr. Worlds.
    Here's Brown & Ybanez's OD at Jr. Worlds
    and their FD.

    Musson formerly performed with de la Asuncion (here at 2007 masters)

    so they may perform better than their very new status might suggest.

    Sara BAILEY & Kyle HERRING USA (86th ranked by the ISU were 7th at Lake Placid JGP last year with a total score of 119.23

    Here's their bio at icenetwork:

    7th US Nationals Jr (5, 11, 6) 7th to skate in the FD 11th to skate in OD 8th in CD (2007, 2nd in Novice Dance)

    They also competed at Lake Placid
    Here's a photo of their Starlight Waltz costumes.

    They scored 41.48 and were 5th at LPIDC in OD.

    They scored 61.69 and were 4th at LPIDC in the FD

    There is a Russian team that I've never heard of--they may be very good, as so many of the unseen Russian dancers are:

    Valeria ZENKOVA & Valerie SINITSIN RUS 4

    Abby CARSWELL / Jason CUSMARIU CAN 1 will compete here. (*edited to reflect correct info). They competed at Lake Placid. They finished 8th in Group B in the Paso Doble.

    Their OD is 1940's music, Jive): Mr. Pinstripe Suit ; Foxtrot : Maddest Kind of Love. Their OD was 7th (39.47) at LPIDC. Here's a phot.

    They are skating to a Gypsy Medley for their FD this year:
    They competed in the FD at LPIDC and finished 8th with a score of 57.75 .
    Here's a photo of their costume:

    Oksana KLIMOVA & Sasha PALOMÄKI FIN 2 (107th ranked by the ISU) scored their highest ever total score at Courchevel last week, but were only able to place 11th with a score of 121.36.

    Their OD is: Foxtrot (1930s): Cheek to Cheek by I. Berlin
    Quickstep (1930s): I Want Dance

    Their FD this year is a moder version of Libertango by A. Piazzolla as performed by Bond

    Siobhan HEEKIN-CANEDY / Dmitri ZYZAK UKR 5 also competed at Lake Placid.
    Here's a photo of their Starlight Waltz costume:

    They finished 3rd in the Open Starlight Waltz, behind the Hubbells and the Shibutanis with a score of 25.80.

    They finished 10th in the OD, scoring 37.59

    and 9th in FD 57.13

    I'm really looking forward to seeing the Hubbell's new programs!


    I'm guessing the top six competitors, in any order, will be Dice Murakami JPN, Nan Song CHN, Javier Fernandez of Spain, Alexander Gonzales and Richard Dornbush of the USA, and Gongming Chen CHN.

    Daisuke MURAKAMI JPN
    Dice used to compete for the US but now competes for Japan. I'm not sure what motivated him to make this move since the Japanese team is, if anything, deeper than the US team. Here's a montage of Japanese men who might be on the road to Vancouver. Dice is at about minute 3. There are so many!

    That move has put a hole in his competitive resume.
    He was 5th in Japanese Nationals in Juniors with a score of
    156.18 last year.

    In 2006, he was 3rd in the Mexico JGP and 4th in the Taipei JGP.

    This might not sound too amazing. However, in the recent summer competition, Moran International in NJ, Dice won the Jr. SP with a score of 60.62 (which would have beaten Adam Rippon in Srs at the same event.)

    He scored 118.32 [63.94/55.38 -1] in his LP with one fall. His music was Rachmaninoff’s Variations/Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini (techno version at begininning and end).
    Jumps: 4t (looked good!), 3a fall/ur?, 3f (hung on), 3r-2t, 3z, 3f-2t-2r, 3r, 3s-2t.

    So based on his scores and his trick list, he might medal here.

    Here's his exhibition from this summer at Moran (he is skating his SP to Night on Bald Mountain as an exhibition):

    Dice was one of the Japanese skaters training in America who are profiled in this Japanese language documentary:

    Dice is in Part 2

    The first half of the documentary was on Miki Ando and Daisuke Takahashi.

    Nan SONG CHN
    Nan Song most recently appeared at Courcheval and finished 5th. His hightest total score to date was 169.60 at Sheffield JGP last year where he finished (4th)
    His free skate at Courchevel (5th overall)

    Music Short Program / Original Dance as of season 2008/2009
    The Way Old Friends Do by Maksim Mrvica
    Music Free Skating / Free Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Once Upon a Time in America (soundtrack) by E. Morricone

    Javier's best total score was 161.01 at world jrs last year where he finished (13th). He was 9th at Tallin and 11th at Sheffield last year. He is the Spanish National champion in Juniors.

    Worlds SP 2008

    Worlds Jr 2008 FD

    Music Short Program / Original Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Music Free Skating / Free Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Romeo and Juliet (soundtrack)


    Andrew was 3rd last year in juniors at the US National championship.
    He was 1st at the Aegon competition in the Netherlands in Juniors.
    Here are his scores there:
    Andrew GONZALES JR. USA 156.68 56.85 (1 SP) 99.83 (2 :{)

    Richard DORNBUSH USA

    Richard was 4th at US Nationals in Juniors. His choreography is by Braden Overett, whose work I really, really love.

    Richard was 1st at the Gardena Spring trophy in 2007 and 6th at the Vienna JGP.

    His best total score to date is 155.22

    Gongming CHENG CHN
    He was 6th at Sheffield last year with a total score of 155.51.
    He was 4th at the Chinese National Championship in Juniors.

    Here is his exhibition program from Chinese Nationals

    Music Short Program / Original Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon (soundtrack)
    Music Free Skating / Free Dance as of season 2008/2009
    The Guardian (soundtrack)

    Elladj BALDE CAN
    Elladj won the gold medal in juniors at the Canadian National championships with a score of 165.26.
    Last year he was 7th at Sheffield, 14th at Chemnitz and 21st at World Juniors.

    His best total score internationally is 151.30

    Here is his SP from 2008 Jr. Worlds

    and his LP as performed at Quebec Summer competiton recently

    Music Short Program / Original Dance as of season 2008/2009 Freedom by Mei Li and Yin Yue Hui, performed by 12 Girls Band
    Drum Solo from "Ozlem" by Turku Music Free Skating / Free Dance as of season 2008/2009 Carmina Burana by Carl Orff

    Some information on other competitors:

    Alexander STEPANOV RUS
    Future Stars in Moscow 2014 Exhibition
    12th at Russian Nationals in Jrs., scoring 142.88

    Samuel MORAIS CAN
    6th canadian nationals (138.01)
    Music Short Program / Original Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Sweet Remembrance of You by Joseph William
    Music Free Skating / Free Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Stradivarius - Tosca Fantasy performed by Edvin Marton
    Romeo and Juliet performed by Edvin Marton

    14th Lake Placid
    18th Sheffield
    105.84 total maximum score


    2007 Junior Golden Bear 5 6 5 (102.78)
    2007 Junior Coupe Internationale de Nice 10 8 8 (101.03)

    His LP from last December

    Music Short Program / Original Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Slovak Folk Music
    Music Free Skating / Free Dance as of season 2008/2009

    Min-Seok KIM KOR
    2006 jr champ, 2008 2nd in seniors
    13th lake placid
    23th Vienna
    38th Jr. Worlds

    His LP, skated at the Korean JGP selection test

    Bela PAPP FIN
    finnish champion (now training in Canada)
    88.79 Lake Placid 12th
    5th at the recent Golden West Championships with 142. 69
    29th world jrs

    His SP at Worlds JRs

    Music Short Program / Original Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Selection from Artsakh by A. Gevorgian
    Music Free Skating / Free Dance as of season 2008/2009
    Satori Mix by Kodo, Stobe's Nanafushi
    The Best of Bond by Scorchio

    Fernando HERNANDEZ MEX
    28th chemnitz
    71.99 total
    A video of Fernando from about a year ago of him practicing his SP

    Timothy LEEMANN SUI

    Matej Benjamin SILECKI UKR


    Sebra YEN TPE
    A montage he made for his desktop computer of him skating

    Chin Ting LAM HKG



    My guess is that Alexe Gilles and Ayane Nakamura will be competing for the gold. Good options for the bronze are Sato, Witkowski, and Dobbs.

    Alexe GILLES USA

    Her icenetwork bio:

    US jr. champion. However, she did not get to go to Jr. Worlds because the slots were taken by Flatt, Nagisu, and Zhang.
    132.67 is her top international score.
    Last year she was 2nd at Lake Placid, 4th at Zagreb and 6th in JGPF

    She skated well at Liberty and won the LP in her group. Furthermore, at Liberty, she was skating in Seniors:

    Liberty SP
    Liberty LP

    121.99 vienna 4th chemnitz 4th
    Here's a vid-that sleeve must be quite difficult to skate with
    her SP last year
    her LP last year

    Nanoha SATO JPN
    117.90 Last year she was 6th in zagreb and 6th In Juniors at the Japanese championships.
    She's one of many in this video of young Japanese skaters
    Here's an article about how she moved to Wisconsin to train when she was 11.

    Cecylia was 3rd in Canadian jrs in 2007 but struggled in 2008 and fell to 7th last year. I hope she's back in form. She participated in the BC Summer Skate and finished 2nd to Laney Diggs in the LP with 81.52 and 3rd in the SP with 49.48 points (Diggs 1st, Myra Leung 2nd). If those scores are at all comparable to international scores, she could do well here.

    Dana won canadian jrs in 2007, and was 14th in srs in 2008
    Here's her winning program from 2007:

    Amanda DOBBS USA was 5th in US juniors and 3rd in the AEGON challenge skate in juniors with a score of 122.65.

    Here's her icenetwork bio:

    Bingwa GENG CHN
    Her highest total score was 107.97 at the World Junior Championships where she finished 21st

    Here is a video of her skating at the Chinese grand prix

    Other skaters in the competition:

    Min-Jung KWAK KOR
    Here's her 2008 SP, where she finished first at Korean Nationals
    And her 2008 LP at Korean Nationals where she finished 2nd.:

    Erle HARSTAD NOR 13th tallinn, 10th sofia best total score 99.33

    Belinda SCHÖNBERGER AUT choreographed by Stannick Jeannette. I don't care how she skates. I want to see the programs Stannick choreographed!

    Albrina LEE AUS
    Amelie PIERRE BEL
    Chaochih LIU TPE
    Barbora SVEDOVA CZE
    Karina JOHNSON DEN
    Georgia GLASTRIS GRE
    Hilary HO HKG
    Chelsea Rose CHIAPPA HUN
    Hounsh MUNSHI IND
    Priscila ALVEZ MEX
    Reyna HAMUI MEX
    Mary Ro REYES MEX
    Mary Grace BALDO PHI
    Sarah PAW SIN
    Alexandra KUNOVA SVK
    Nika CERIC SLO
    Melanie SWANG THA
    Last edited by dorispulaski; 09-12-2008 at 08:35 PM.

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