2021 IdF - Pairs: Thoughts and Comments? | Golden Skate

2021 IdF - Pairs: Thoughts and Comments?

gsk8

Record Breaker
Joined
Jun 21, 2003
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United-States

What are your overall thoughts on the event?
 
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ladyjane

Medalist
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Jun 26, 2012
Country
Netherlands
Not the best Pairs GP by any means, but not the worst either. I was so pleased to see J/R doing really well, until the lift mishap (didn't even 'get' the spin issue) practically handing a medal on a platter to another pair, but in this case K/F did pretty well themselves - even with a fall. No pair was picture perfect, but it was nice to see an unknown French pair (at least for me) joining in and doing pretty well for themselves if not in placements. Also I was impressed by Nazarychev's expression throughout the skate. I was pleased to see B/K back on track although they still have work to do. Seeing Moskvina is always a joy, and that played an important part in my enjoyment.
 

lariko

Medalist
Joined
Jan 31, 2019
Country
Canada
I guess it was quiet? Was happy to see James so over the moon to be competing again. Also, happy that no disasters happened, and B/K made the finals. Really bummed P/J couldn’t compete here.
 

gsk8

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Jun 21, 2003
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James/and Radford really left a lot of points on the table after missing the pair combo spin and Axel lift. I believe they otherwise would have medaled here (silver?).
 

skylark

Gazing at a Glorious Great Lakes sunset
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Vanessa James is one of the happiest, most positive people on the planet. To see how she was encouraging and reassuring Eric, when he was feeling stressed out over the lift failure, was beautiful to see.

“The cheering public really helped us a lot and made us feel like home,” said James. “This is the most confident we have felt since we started skating together. We lost about 13 points on easy elements today, that we usually never miss, but we are proud that we got the hard ones done.”
 

chuckm

Record Breaker
Joined
Aug 31, 2003
TDF was a repeat of SC for James/Radford. At SC, they were ahead of CG/Leduc after the SP, but couldn't quite get it together in the FS, and the US team edged them for the bronze. At TDF, J/R's lead over Knierim / Frazier was small, less than 2 points, and K/F had scored over 200 at SA, so J/R had to skate clean in the FS to stay ahead, but they came up short.

J/R were in 3rd after the SP, behind both Russian teams, so no, they weren't going to win silver if they just stayed ahead of K/F.
Artemeva / Nazarychev won silver with a total 205.15. J/R would have had to score 140.56 in the FS to win silver. Their top FS score in the GP was 124.50 at TDF.
 

skylark

Gazing at a Glorious Great Lakes sunset
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TDF was a repeat of SC for James/Radford. At SC, they were ahead of CG/Leduc after the SP, but couldn't quite get it together in the FS, and the US team edged them for the bronze. At TDF, J/R's lead over Knierim / Frazier was small, less than 2 points, and K/F had scored over 200 at SA, so J/R had to skate clean in the FS to stay ahead, but they came up short.

J/R were in 3rd after the SP, behind both Russian teams, so no, they weren't going to win silver if they just stayed ahead of K/F.
Artemeva / Nazarychev won silver with a total 205.15. J/R would have had to score 140.56 in the FS to win silver. Their top FS score in the GP was 124.50 at TDF.

You're right. But when I was watching James/Radford's skate in real time, it really felt like a silver-medal performance. Probably because they were completing so smoothly and beautifully the elements they've been struggling with. It really elevated their performance. This was the way I (and many, I think) hoped and expected them to look and skate from the time we knew they'd paired up.

In addition, J/R skated with the kind of feeling for the music and expression that, for me, K/F haven't yet found. Someone said in the comp thread that K/F's performance (the happy, big smiles, etc.) didn't really seem to go with the music of "Fix Me." I will say that I saw a glimpse of Brandon's feelings for the music and his intention, near the beginning of the program. It was fleeting, but I saw it.
 

gold12345

Medalist
Joined
Dec 14, 2007
All the pairs left points on the table, but the last group skated well. Boikova/Kozlovskii were the clear winner despite mistakes. I'm surprised the ISU doesn't require good camera work considering GP events appear on major TV networks. They zoomed into the girl's face so many times on the lifts.

Knierim/Frazier should have been 2nd over Artemeva/Nazarychev. I'm fine with strict judging, as long as it's applied across the board. Rarely do I disagree with the actual order of pairs placements (I think pairs judging is often the most sensible of the 4 disciplines). But I can't figure out why A/N were 2nd. A/N have some good qualities; she has a good personality on the ice, great jump combo, some nice lifts. Elsewhere, they received very generous GOE for weaker elements. And that didn't just impact the placements, it resulted in their TES being just 1.78 behind Boikova/Kozlovskii, which was much too close. In addition to her popped jump that landed on the wrong foot, they had to save a lift that was going wayward and slowed down to a halt, and they had by far the weakest twist and throw mechanics among the top 3. Their GOE just barely reflects these issues.

Knierim/Frazier skated great aside from Brandon's rushed 3T that was very costly; it was one of their best skates as a pair. It showed real growth by them to deliver a strong performance after a nervy opening element. Alexa looked outstanding. Their throws are huge- the 3Lo was better than their 3F- some of the GOE should have been higher there, it was clearly better than +2.

Twist GOE:
B/K: 4 3 3 5 2 2 3 3 3
K/F: 4 3 2 3 2 2 3 3 2
A/N: 3 3 2 2 1 2 3 3 2

There was little differentiation between a great and very subpar twist. K/F's twist was excellent today, the best in the event. It got Level 2- no idea why, and I know all the twist level requirements. A/N's twist scored way too similarly when it lacks amplitude/power and he struggles to even get her feet over his head. There's a similar issue in how these pairs were scored on throw GOE. A/N's throw 3F in particular is very small/lacking in power, but got GOE from some judges too similar to B/K's great throw in the SP, as well as GOE too similar to K/F's gigantic throw 3Lo in the FS.

The protocols never look perfect in terms of GOE and you can always pick them apart, but when A/N get +2/+3 for a lift error from the same two judges who gave K/F +1 for a strong well-executed lift, it bothers me, and the skaters should get feedback as to why this is. Despite all this, K/F scored over 200 points again, and should be pleased with their improvements.

This was clearly the best James/Radford have looked in competition; their skates were much smoother. But the aborted lift didn't feel so much like a fluke, as lifts haven't been the easiest element for them so far. Their third lift was also uncomfortable going up and changing position (good difficulty though). I'm not sure why their pair spin was invalidated, but it was originally called Level 1, so they still wouldn't have medaled even if they had received a level, so not a big deal there. Now that they're steadier in competition, they can try to make their throws bigger, as Vanessa especially has that type of athleticism. It looks like they're holding back on the throws just to get them landed; their throw 3F was tentative. But they got several +5s for their throw 3S, which was a bit generous even though her landing was great. In general the judges were kind, giving them a couple +4s for the twist that had a bit of a wonky set down. Overall they looked strong. They seem happy/appreciative to be skating again regardless of results, and that is great to see.
 
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Skater Boy

Record Breaker
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Unspectacular mediocrity. Good on the Americans for medalling. B andK were ho hum. Big mistakes from James and Radford but I am seeing some hope. I just don't know if there is enough time for them to gt t it together.
 

gold12345

Medalist
Joined
Dec 14, 2007
Someone said in the comp thread that K/F's performance (the happy, big smiles, etc.) didn't really seem to go with the music of "Fix Me." I will say that I saw a glimpse of Brandon's feelings for the music and his intention, near the beginning of the program. It was fleeting, but I saw it.

They start out the program serious and not smiling. I think the idea is that when the music picks up and builds, their moods pick up and they have a joyful feeling over being able to be "fixed" by each other. There are so many elements in these programs, I'm not expecting any major story telling. Judges like when you smile. How many skaters have gotten called stone-faced or whatever else for not smiling. They feel joy towards the end when the music intensifies. Their PCS were good here and climbing gradually. It's the TES for them vs A/N that was the strangest aspect of this competition for me.
 

chuckm

Record Breaker
Joined
Aug 31, 2003
Should not be a surprise at some of the levels awarded the Russian skaters vs the American and Canadian teams. The TS was Russian, so of course K/F got a level 2 on their twist lift. J/R got a 4, but the two judges who gave them only + 1 were Russian and Latvian.
 

Ivana

On the Ice
Joined
Dec 5, 2007
B/K - happy to see them back on track, still a lot of stupid mistakes on jumps, but they looked way better than at SA, glad they secured their GPF spot with a win
A/N - great competition for them, but overscored for my liking while there is a lot of promise at the moment they are not where the judges had them (and I do love Russian pairs for the record), except for the mistake on the jump the last lift was shaky which is nowhere to be seen in the protocols, no idea why the judges seem to think their lifts and twist are anywhere near the quality of B/K at the moment
K/F - shame about the jumping pass, they could have been in second and possibly should have been even with the mistake, two lovely skates here
J/R - I thought this pairing stood no chance given their age, time of ice etc., but they are proving me wrong, lots of mistakes, but the judges love them (ehm missed her two footed landing in SP) and all it takes is one skate where everything goes well and they may be a medal threat, not sure what I think about that
G/A - I remember seeing them live at Nepela I think 4 years ago and I was legitimately worried about her life, that is luckily no longer the case which is always good in my book, I do like both of their programs but they are very mistake prone, which was also the case here in Grenoble
C/M - there should be bonus points for synchronized falls, period
K/P and K/K - let's just say things are not looking bright for French pairs skating at the moment, K/K were a nice surprise given I have never seen them skate before and it was not a complete disaster, but still the level is pretty low
 

skylark

Gazing at a Glorious Great Lakes sunset
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Aug 12, 2014
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They start out the program serious and not smiling. I think the idea is that when the music picks up and builds, their moods pick up and they have a joyful feeling over being able to be "fixed" by each other. There are so many elements in these programs, I'm not expecting any major story telling. Judges like when you smile. How many skaters have gotten called stone-faced or whatever else for not smiling. They feel joy towards the end when the music intensifies.
I like it when skaters smile, too. I like it the most when it's not just "smile for the judges," "smile for the audience," "smile for the camera." But the smile comes from an internal place, the soul, that relates to what they're feeling, the music and the program. Your interpretation of their program is different from mine, and that's fine. It's even expected! I'm not meaning to argue points; I just want to articulate my view, which is sometimes a little different from others. Sometimes a lot different! :laugh:
 

skylark

Gazing at a Glorious Great Lakes sunset
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J/R - I thought this pairing stood no chance given their age, time of ice etc., but they are proving me wrong, lots of mistakes, but the judges love them (ehm missed her two footed landing in SP) and all it takes is one skate where everything goes well and they may be a medal threat, not sure what I think about that
I missed it too. Was it on a throw? The reason I ask is that I've noticed many instances when Alexa K. and Evgenia T. (probably among others) have slight 2-foot landing on throws and they get positive GOEs. I think it's a case of the judges giving many positive points for the other qualities of the throw. Then they may take off a few points for the 2-foot, but it still may seem as if the judges have missed the two-footedness of the landing.

I think it can apply to SBS jumps also. There are other qualities in jumps that give the skaters many positive GOEs. Some people complain and explain at length, for instance, why they think more points should be deducted for Cain-Gribble/Leduc's jumps. Among other pairs. But when I watch C-G/L's jumps, I see the whole jump, including unison and synchronization. I think that's the advantage of not fixating on trying to find fault with the jumps. It's my opinion that some, if not many figure skating judges are looking at the whole picture.


G/A - I remember seeing them live at Nepela I think 4 years ago and I was legitimately worried about her life,

😮 Why?

 

Ivana

On the Ice
Joined
Dec 5, 2007
I missed it too. Was it on a throw?
SBS jump, it was visible in the re-play, they got one -2 from the judges, all the rest were +1/2 I believe.

Regarding G/A I remember them being really shaky in the lifts 4 years ago, they have come a long way since then.
 

Yeslekyelnats

Rinkside
Joined
Feb 13, 2018
I missed it too. Was it on a throw? The reason I ask is that I've noticed many instances when Alexa K. and Evgenia T. (probably among others) have slight 2-foot landing on throws and they get positive GOEs. I think it's a case of the judges giving many positive points for the other qualities of the throw. Then they may take off a few points for the 2-foot, but it still may seem as if the judges have missed the two-footedness of the landing.

I think it can apply to SBS jumps also. There are other qualities in jumps that give the skaters many positive GOEs. Some people complain and explain at length, for instance, why they think more points should be deducted for Cain-Gribble/Leduc's jumps. Among other pairs. But when I watch C-G/L's jumps, I see the whole jump, including unison and synchronization. I think that's the advantage of not fixating on trying to find fault with the jumps. It's my opinion that some, if not many figure skating judges are looking at the whole picture.




😮 Why?
Right my understanding is that a slight 2 foot is not an automatic negative GOE (though some judges do it that way) it’s just a negative factor that can be offset by other positive things. Both Alexa and evengia get huge height/distance and have a long ride out that many other teams do not have.
 
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