2008 Skate Canada

Ottawa, ON


Competition Reports

Ladies Report     Men's Report    Pairs Report    Dance Report

Competition Schedule

Friday, Oct. 31, 2008

12:05 PM Pairs Short Program
Ladies Short Program
18:10 PM Compulsory Dance
Menís Short Program

Saturday, Nov. 1, 2008

10:45 PM Original Dance
Pairs Free Skate
4:05 PM Menís Free Skate
Ladies Free Skate

Sunday, Nov. 2, 2008

12:15 AM Free Dance
3:05 PM Exhibition of Champions


Sunday, 2 November

Dance quick notes:  Davis & White skated an exquisite routine to "Sampson and Delilah."  Ben and Tanith, watch your rear view mirror you are at risk of being passed.  Pechelat & Bourzat fell back to third place on a fall by Bourzat.  A deduction and the loss of an element on that.  Virtue & Moir clones Crone & Poirier were second in the Free Dance and moved up to second overall.  Navarro & Bommentre dropped off the podium skating to a piece of music too painful to listen to.

Attendance for Sunday: 4283.

Saturday, 1 November

Ladies quick notes:  No point, the report is up. 

Men's quick notes:  No point, the report is up.  It was quite a thrilling event.  Far more interesting than the predictable Ladies event. 

Pairs quick notes:  Dube & Davison gave a technically strong, but not perfect performance in the Free Skate but could not quite overcome Kawaguchi & Smirnov's lead in the Short Program.  The Canadians placed second overall, 0.43 points behind the Russians.  Keauna McLaughlin and Yuko Kawaguchi collided in the warmup, and while Kawaguchi seemed to shake it off fairly well, McLaughlin appeared more affected by it.  Whatever the cause, McLaughlin & Brubaker had a rough skate, being scored negative on three elements, and their pair spin called no-level.  Placing third in the Free Skate, the Americans ended up third overall.  Now they get to wait for a month to see if a second and third place finish in their two events will be enough to make the final.

Dance quick notes:  Davis & White opened up a big lead after the OD.  They are now up more than 9 points.  They were strong and fast.  Pechalat & Bourzat did not help their cause, with Pechalat falling in a step sequence, and other errors.  Nor was their program particularly strong artistically.  Navarro & Bommentre placed fourth in the OD, but hold onto third overall.  Strong performances by Gorshkova & Butikov and Crone & Poirier tighten up the competition for the bronze medal.  The couples in third through fifth place are currently within 0.11 points of each other.

Attendance for Saturday: 4871.

Friday, 31 October

Men's quick notes:  So much for favorites.  Yannick Ponsero kicked serious butt with a score of 78.05 and a clean quad toe loop.  Patrick Chan also had a strong skate -- no quad, but a nice triple-triple kept him close in elements.  Ryan Bradley had a nice quad, but the following triple toe loop was not good.  He skated out of the first warmup group to place third.  Evan Lysacek wrecked his combination and now sits in fourth 6.65 points back.  He remains in the mix for a medal.

Dance quick notes:  Davis & White take a small lead (few tenths of a point) over Pechelat & Bourzat.  This will be a close competition that will be decided by the Free Dance.  Navarro & Bommentre are in third followed closely by Canadians Crone & Poirier.

Ladies quick notes:  A rather tedious Ladies Short Program unfolded pretty much as expected, except for the part about Carolina Kostner wiping up the ice.  Canadian Joannie Rochette took the lead with a well skated program and respectable Program Component scores.  Fumie Suguri also skated well, but her component marks were not at the elite level, as was the case for all but Rochette in this event.  Caroline Zhang gave a lackluster performance but it was still good enough for third place thanks to the overall mediocre competition she was up against.  Kostner has problems with all her jump elements and fell twice.  Her Program Components were second best of the group, but still only in the mid sixes.

Pairs quick notes:  At the end of the Short Program, the Russian team Yuko Kawaguchi & Alexander Smirnov lead with 65.02 points.  It was a well executed lyrical program.  Americans Keauna McLaughlin & Rockne Brubaker are in second 4.36 points back.  It was a fairly clean performance, technically superior to Skate America.  Just 0.52 points behind the Americans are the Canadian Champions Jessica Dube & Bryce Davison.  Errors in two elements pulled down their element scores, but they made up for it in components, with the second highest Program Component scores, 0.56 behind the Russians in PCS.

Attendance for Friday: 3567.

Thursday, 30 October

So here we are in chilly (32 F, and snow on the ground) Ottawa, in the home of the Ottawa Senator's, a 19,000+ seat facility that opened in 1996.  It is a huge fairly modern space, but on the judges side nearly all seats in the lower bowl are partially blocked due to the immense (towering) podium that was built for the Technical Panel, TV cameras, and countless other personnel.

Competition starts noon, tomorrow.  In the Pairs event, there are three teams each from the U.S. and Canada, and one each from China and Russia.  Last week we got to see how U.S. Champions Keauna McLaughlin & Rockne Burbaker compared to World Champions Aliona Savchenko & Robin Szolkowy.  This week they go up against Canadians Jessica Dube & Bryce Davison, and the Russian team of Yuko Kawaguchi & Alexander Smirnov, who placed third and fourth at the 2008 World Championships.

The favorites in the ladies event are Carolina Costner of Italy and Joannie Rochette of Canada, who placed second and fifth at Worlds.  For the U.S. team the main interest will be to see where a year of maturing places Caroline Zhang in the pecking order. Also here from the U.S., Beatrisa Liang and Alissa Czisny, who placed fifth and ninth at 2008 U.S. National Championships.  Czisny, who placed third at 2007 Nationals, and won the Free Skate there, is on the comeback trail, as is Fumie Suguri of Japan, the 2006 World silver medalist.  Suguri moved to the U.S. after the 2007/08 season and now trains in Hackensack, NJ.

In the Men's event, Evan Lysacek is the favorite, followed by Sergei Voronov of Russia, who placed seventh at Worlds, and fourth in the Free Skate.  Canadian fans, however, will be keen to see what a year has done for Patrick Chan, the Canadian Men's Champion who placed ninth at his first appearance at a World Championships in 2008.

Based on reputation, the main match up in the Dance event should be Meryl Davis & Charlie White going up against the French couple Nathalie Pechelat & Fabian Bourzat, who placed sixth and seventh at 2008 Worlds.  It was a see-saw battle between these couples in Gothenburg, where Pechelat & Bourzat beat Davis & White in the Compulsory Dance and Original Dance, but the reverse the case for the Free Dance.

It is going to be a long day tomorrow with four events taking place.  Don't expect reports to be posted all that quickly.  Keeping up will be a challenge this weekend.

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