Bon jour,
There seems to be no back of the house warm up or training area. Skaters can be seen jogging around outside the arena before performance, jogging around the concourse inside the arena and practicing lifts in the concourse. I got up close and personal of sui/Han working on their quad twist. Oh to be 14 and fearless, I mean, 16 and fearless!! Sorry. What was I thinking. But, at 16, she does have a training bra on. Now if they could only find her birth certificate. Seeing her up close it’s clear she’s not 16. I don’t understand why ISU allows this shame to continue. Talented girl but rules are rules. I’m tough and of course, could be wrong but one day we’ll get the story.
I talked to many around the arena yesterday including French, Japanese, US, Canadians, Russians and others and all were baffled to disgusted with the results of the dance competition. None understood how Canadians were given the win. A French commentator even went so far as to say she’d reviewed the replay and found multiple small errors in the Canadian program that were seemingly ignored. Ah politics and skating. Likewise talked to international group about Chan’s scoring and all agreed, that he’s consistently over marked and no one understands. Though all quick to add a dubious comment about his edging which of course is the fall back excuse for ignoring his errors. Seems US people not the only ones who don’t understand the current international judging affection for Canada.
Arena much more full yesterday and lines for bathroom were now up to 20 minutes. How fun. Not an issue for guys, but there are a lot of women being dehydrated in Nice afraid to drink fluids for fear of not being able to get to the bathroom.
Great day of competition with exciting programs. Not a lot of falling as was the case with the women the day before. However, there were a few that while on the ice, I found myself counting the flags hanging in the rafters.
Surya bonalee was in the house in the boxes in front of us. Still very svelte and looks good. Other former French skating entourage as well.
I’m not a doctor but Kavaguti has an eating disorder. I caught a few minutes of practice yesterday and she had on tight black warm up outfit that was just clinging to bones. She’s way too thin to be an athlete. I think it speaks to their standings. I threw them a baguette with a business card for a psychiatrist on the ice after they finished skating. Their program was beautiful but to see her up close is disturbing.
It’s like living in Skaterville here. Skaters and who’s who all over the neighborhood everywhere you go. Very fun.
I’ve spoken to Christopher coluza several times here in the hotel. He now skates for PHL and qualified for LP. Nice kid. Very humble. I told him I remembered him from US Nationals in Greensboro. Turns out he was there and then decided to skate for Philippines in order to get on world stage. Can no longer then do nationals.
The music in the arena is so LOUD that it is hard to stand with some of the selections. Particularly grating are the various versions of jazz and blues. One can see many people sitting in stands with their hands over their ears.
And by the way, jazz music should be put on next year’s banned musically list. Susan, please take note!! Many in audience agree.
I was worried that our old friend Carmen was not going to make it to Nice but she finally showed up in one of the men’s SP. Thanks god!! What would a competition be without Carmen??

Other favorites like Rachmaninov, Requiem, tango’s, and Gershwin also appeared. Obviously they didn’t get the Grote rules in time. Susan, you may want to consider sending them out a bit earlier this year. However, I must say, thankfully, there was little to no repetition of music within each genre as was seen in the dance.
One of the highlights of the day was when in final minute of program, Victor Pfeifer’s free leg cut the pant strap of his skating leg while doing footwork. He was great in that he bent down as part of the choreography, pulled up his pants on that leg to his knee so as to prevent the strap from catching on the ice and finished the program with that look!!! It was great and audience appreciated the ingenuity. He then pulled up the other pant leg when taking his bows and audience went wild!!!
Joubert got a roar on introduction, did a good job and had people on their feet. Not my favorite but certainly a home country pleaser and one can’t help but get caught up in the energy.
As to the skating, Adam did OK, not great. Jeremy another head case. He looked up in starting position and many agreed his eyes said, OMG, what am I doing here??? And then he melted down. Why? Is the question.
Fernandez is an international crowd pleaser and looked great. Takahashi just rocks my world. He is so fabulous. He shaved before the competition. I saw him earlier in the week with a mustache and goatee. He also looks way too thin but did a great job and a big crowd pleaser. I was literally sitting on the edge of my seat while he skated. He was not without errors though, unfortunately. Crowd seemed to appreciate him more than Chan for what it’s worth.
Patrick once again got near record scores despite several errors. People are baffled. No major errors but 2 balance issues on footwork, a step out, and a hand down on jump landing.
Pairs competition was great to see. The Russians were on fire and interpreted the overused Swan lake beautifully!!!! The audience was riveted and applause started about 10 seconds before they finished and audience started rising about 5 seconds before they finished. Just was an amazing performance. Captivating and a competition highlight.
Americans did well and about what you would have expected. Really great if you consider how long they’ve been together.
Sui/Han seemingly did a quad twist and quad throw though looked like 2 foot landing and don’t know if either or both were ratified. But fun to see. Crowd definitely not pleased with their scores which seemed low so suspect at least one of the quads was downgraded.
I felt for pang and tong who just recently found out they had to be here. They weren’t in fighting form but still did well enough considering. Wonder what they thought?
Germans looked STUNNING in their hunter green/black costumes. A joy to see though they seemed slightly off and she looked lost at more than one point in program. Don’t know if she really was or if part of choreography but several people commented on it. No doubt they did not win the free skate and lost a lot of points to the Russians. Had they not been so far behind they would have been commanding winners. Imagine the one tenth margin that separated. Everyone amazed but understood.
And who would have predicted last week that the Japanese would have taken 3rd place?? No one I am sure. LOVED their reaction in K and C when they realized!!!! The crowd went absolutely wild when the finished and again when it was announced their 3rd place finish. 1st time ever for Japanese pairs to medal. And rightly so. They had 2 solid programs and have improved notably since last season. Another of the great moments of the week.
Finals today for men and ladies. Should be great men’s competition. Look for Ashley to kick butt and medal! At least I hope. She’s still in the hunt. Hoping alissa can throw caution to the wind, do the LP she’s capable of doing and knock off the less talented skaters in front of her to at least move up into top 10. She’s in 16th so has no pressure (one would think) and hopefully can find joy, do her thing and then RETIRE from competitive skating.

I fear the women’s LP will be an anti climax after the men. We’ll see.