2020-21 Japanese Nationals: Ladies' Free Skate

Skatefan15

On the Ice
Joined
Mar 8, 2015
Here is what she did, and in brackets is what was originally planned:

4S
3A (3A-3T/2T)
3F-Eu-3S
3Lo
2A-3T (3A)
3F-3T (3F-3T/2T depending on axel)
2A (3Lz; she fell on this during warmup, so was a little concerned)

As analysed above, Rika would have hit 165 if she landed everything as planned, although I can understand why she didn't feel the need to go all out. She spent her entire warmup on 3A and 4S, had one attempt at a 3F-3T and a 3F-Eu-3S. She didn't have time to warm up a lutz. She knows she can jump axels and lutzes, and so the main focus at this competition was landing the 4S, which she did splendidly. Given her short program buffer, she then just had to make it through her program in one piece to win the competition, and so I guess she didn't want to take any more risks.

Although I would have enjoyed seeing a woman jump a 3Lz as her last jump and a 3A in the second half. Rika will have to go for broke if Worlds somehow isn't cancelled.
Thank you for that analysis! Also thanks for putting the jumps originally planned in brackets! I remember her talking about what she was going to do a few days ago, but it’s 5 am where I live so my brain was confused :ROFLMAO:
 

Skatefan15

On the Ice
Joined
Mar 8, 2015
With all that said though, happy that Satoko delivered a beautiful skate, Kaori saved her jumps, Mai continued her comeback, and Rika managed to land the 4S and 3A in one competition. That 4S was gorgeous and I'd love to get a clean and full difficulty version of that program in my collection.
I agree! As much as I’m sad Mai wasn’t 3rd, I think she can still be proud of herself. I’m also happy for Satoko and Kaori for having redemption skates after last year.
 

Yuzuruu

the silent assassin
Medalist
Joined
Nov 21, 2017
Folks, losing levels affects scores. I feel like it's 2016/17 and people being angry at Kolyada for high scores, because he got levels and others didn't.... No one is saying Rika wasn't the best, why the anger? We all know she can get higher scores but she didn't do her best yet. She has a big room for improvement, which IMO plays to her advantage in long term.
I for one am not angry at all :) She won fair and square and she lost levels and it obviously cost her. I just think it's a mistake on JSF's behalf not to inflate their skaters scores just like other big feds do. It seems wrong but this is how this sport works now, feds have to send a message to ISU, they have to promote their own skaters. If they won't praise their own skaters, who will? They absolutely should overscore Kihira and Sakamoto here, give them +5 GOE's on the good elements, especially to Rika if they want to have any chances at the (potential) Worlds medal.
It's their job to convince ISU that Kihira's 4S and 3A are +5 GOE worthy and that she's 72+ PCS skater, just like rusfed convinced ISU that their ladies jumps are actually quad lutzes and flips. If they won't do it Kihira will never medal at worlds or olympics even if she lands everything she has. It is what it is.
 

Greengemmonster

On the Ice
Joined
Oct 22, 2019
But, she won. And, she landed a beautiful 4S! And, it was a beautiful performance. JF is just mean. Once you expect that, it gets easier. I really just don't understand why Kaori is excepted from the harsh scoring. She gets scored almost like she is performing at another nation's nationals. Why is she so favored?
That's why I can't get over it!!!!

If they want to low-ball everyone, have at it!!! I honestly don't care if they gave everyone 20 points less than the Russians (well I think that would be dumb but you get my drift). But do it consistently and don't exempt one skater who really isn't particularly deserving of being scored like a super special snowflake.

Gahhhhhhh


I will get over this and enjoy the win. I will! I just need to get it out of my system and achieve inner peace (RussNats was so zen for me)
 

lzxnl

Final Flight
Joined
Nov 8, 2018
But, she won. And, she landed a beautiful 4S! And, it was a beautiful performance. JF is just mean. Once you expect that, it gets easier. I really just don't understand why Kaori is excepted from the harsh scoring. She gets scored almost like she is performing at another nation's nationals. Why is she so favored?
At least this time, they bothered to call Kaori's lutz.
 

Joekaz

On the Ice
Joined
Feb 13, 2018
But, she won. And, she landed a beautiful 4S! And, it was a beautiful performance. JF is just mean. Once you expect that, it gets easier. I really just don't understand why Kaori is excepted from the harsh scoring. She gets scored almost like she is performing at another nation's nationals. Why is she so favored?
I think Kaori has the Kawaii
But, she won. And, she landed a beautiful 4S! And, it was a beautiful performance. JF is just mean. Once you expect that, it gets easier. I really just don't understand why Kaori is excepted from the harsh scoring. She gets scored almost like she is performing at another nation's nationals. Why is she so favored?
I think she has the kawaii factor, which is a big thing in Japan.
 

yume

Record Breaker
Joined
Mar 11, 2016
Here is what she did, and in brackets is what was originally planned:

4S
3A (3A-3T/2T)
3F-Eu-3S
3Lo
2A-3T (3A)
3F-3T (3F-3T/2T depending on axel)
2A (3Lz; she fell on this during warmup, so was a little concerned)

As analysed above, Rika would have hit 165 if she landed everything as planned, although I can understand why she didn't feel the need to go all out. She spent her entire warmup on 3A and 4S, had one attempt at a 3F-3T and a 3F-Eu-3S. She didn't have time to warm up a lutz. She knows she can jump axels and lutzes, and so the main focus at this competition was landing the 4S, which she did splendidly. Given her short program buffer, she then just had to make it through her program in one piece to win the competition, and so I guess she didn't want to take any more risks.

Although I would have enjoyed seeing a woman jump a 3Lz as her last jump and a 3A in the second half. Rika will have to go for broke if Worlds somehow isn't cancelled.
First, 165 is kinda low for that layout (low compared to what Kostornaya got with two 3As).
Second, i wonder if she can deliver that layout cleanly this season. Maybe next season, with more competitions in legs.
Her next competition is in march and she won't have the occasion to test that layout before worlds (unless some european seniors B are not cancelled)
 

Joekaz

On the Ice
Joined
Feb 13, 2018
Yeah, that doesn't sit right with me. I don't find her superior in any way to Satoko or Rika. It upsets me.
Its not just PCS. GOE is getting ridiculous too. I remember Rafael Arutyunyan was against +5 - 5, because it gave judges too much room for manipulation. He actually favors +1,0,-1.
 

readernick

Medalist
Joined
Dec 5, 2015
First, 165 is kinda low for that layout (low compared to what Kostornaya got with two 3As).
Second, i wonder if she can deliver that layout cleanly this season. Maybe next season, with more competitions in legs.
Her next competition is in march and she won't have the occasion to test that layout before worlds (unless some european seniors B are not cancelled)
She could technically score around 175, but that would require her to be absolutely clean. I hope she can do it, but I think 165 is more reachable.
 

lzxnl

Final Flight
Joined
Nov 8, 2018
First, 165 is kinda low for that layout (low compared to what Kostornaya got with two 3As).
Second, i wonder if she can deliver that layout cleanly this season. Maybe next season, with more competitions in legs.
Her next competition is in march and she won't have the occasion to test that layout before worlds (unless some european seniors B are not cancelled)

She could technically score around 175, but that would require her to be absolutely clean. I hope she can do it, but I think 165 is more reachable.
I've always thought that a reasonable top score for that program would be 170. I say 165 because I know JSF is stingy with GOEs. I mean, my gold standard for assessing how Rika's programs should be scored is her 2018 NHK FS, with the 87 TES with just 2 3As. Her re-jigged layout swaps a 2T-2Lo (3 points) for a Eu and a 4S (10 points), and so after GOEs that's about a 10 point increase in TES. Her PCS should be above 72, which gives her a total of 169+.
 

jenaj

Record Breaker
Joined
Aug 17, 2003
Country
United-States
Just watched the videos of the top three. I really don’t get Kaori’s PCS. Skating Skills are only one component. On P/E and I, both Rika and Satoko are better and should have higher PCS. I also don’t get Kaori’s 150 with no quad or 3A. It’s Russian-style scoring for her and strict international scoring for everyone else. Rika was wonderful with her beautiful quad. In Russia, it would have been +5. And so much for Satoko never making another World team.
 

Joekaz

On the Ice
Joined
Feb 13, 2018
please explain kawaii factor for us...
I was making a play on words on the "It" factor people often talk about for charisma. Kaori's personality has a lot of a playful charming little girl element to it. And that is very popular in Japan. She is also a hard working tough competitor, so that isnt a criticism. But I do think it factors into her popularity with both the Japanese public and skating fed. On the opposite end, for example, Wakaba has been heavily criticized over the years for her body type, since Japan is somewhat obsessed with thinness.
 
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