Archive | November, 2011

Where in the World is Snow Plow Sam?

30 Nov

The U.S. Figure Skating mascot, Snow Plow Sam, is going all across the world! Follow his adventures here!

Snowplow Sam relaxing on a balcony in Portofino, Italy!

Grand Hotel Victoria, Menaggio, Lake Como Italy


Team USA Earns Two Medals at Rostelecom Cup

26 Nov

Useful Links (Event coverage of Rostelecom Cup)

Starting Order/Results Page  Twitter

TV Schedule/Competition Notes (PDF)  Photo Gallery


Final Results

Mao Asada of Japan prevented a Russian sweep of the podium as she took the gold medal ahead of three from the competitions home. Asada took the lead in the short program by less than a point skating to music from Nikolai Rimski-Korsakov, and she solidified the victory with the top score in the free skate. In her free skate, Asada executed the only element in the competition worth 10 or more points. She received 10.19 points on a triple flip-double loop-double loop combination en route to 118.96 points and a first place total of 183.25 overall. Combined with her silver at the NHK Trophy, Asada has qualified for the Grand Prix final.

Joining Asada in Quebec City for the Grand Prix Final is Alena Leonova of Russia who earned silver to go along with a bronze at the NHK Trophy. Leonova finished a narrow second in the short program with 63.91 points, less than half a point behind Asada. To open her short program, which includes music from The Pirates of the Caribbean, Leonova landed the highest scoring short program element, a triple toe-triple toe combination worth 9.50 points. Leonova finished second in the free skate and earned 180.45 points overall.

Adelina Sotnikova of Russia earned the bronze in her hometown to match the bronze she earned at the Cup of China. She claimed third place in both the short program and free skate and her total of 169.75 points topped her performance in China by nearly 10 points.


Final Results

Three different countries were represented on the men’s podium and each of the top four finishers in the competition will compete in the Grand Prix Final. Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan earned the gold, while Javier Fernandez of Spain took silver and American Jeremy Abbott earned bronze.

Second place finishes in both the short program and the free skate were enough for Hanyu as he earned a narrow .03 point margin of victory in Moscow. Hanyu, who was fourth at the Cup of China, did just enough to top the podium and earn a spot in the Grand Prix Final. Skating to selections from Craig Armstrong in his free skate, Hanyu earned 158.88 points despite two points of deductions. Hanyu landed the competitions highest scoring element of 15.29 points, a triple Axel-triple toe combination with a base value of 13.86. He finished with 241.66 points overall.

Fernandez won Spain’s first ever medal in the Grand Prix with a silver at Skate Canada, and he equaled that performance, finishing second at the Rostelecom Cup. Sitting in fourth place after the short program, Fernandez recorded the top score in the free skate, and came up just short of gold. Skating to music from Giuseppe Verdi, Fernandez earned 163.13 points for his free skate. He began his skate with three elements, a quad toe loop, a quad Salchow and a triple Axel-triple toe loop worth a combined 38.41 points. He finished with 241.63 total points.

Abbott led after the short program but finished fifth in the free skate to land on the podium in third position. Abbott, who won gold at the Cup of China, earned a personal-best 83.54 points in his short program, more than four points better than his skate in Shanghai. Abbott began his short program with a triple flip-triple toe combination and a triple Axel worth 10.20 and 10.07 points respectively. He also received the top component score of 41.50. Abbott earned 145.54 points in his free skate for a total score of 229.08.

Michal Brezina of the Czech Republic finished fourth and will count his previous Grand Prix finishes to earn him a spot in the Final.


Final Results

In a rematch from the NHK Trophy in Japan, this time it was the German pair of Aliona Savchenko & Robin Szolkowy besting Russians Yuko Kavaguti & Alexander Smirnov for gold. Stefania Berton & Ondrej Hotarek of Italy earned the bronze.

In a high-scoring competition, Savchenko & Szolkowy won both the short program and free skate to win by more than ten points. Their total of 208.69 is more than 37 points higher than their total in Japan and more than 24 points higher than their Skate America gold medal score. After a narrow three-point lead after the short program, the Germans posted 139.97 points from their Pina free skate. During their free skate, Savchenko & Szolkowy earned seven or more points on four elements, including a level four lift worth 8.25 points.

Kavaguti & Smirnov, who earned gold in China and Japan, earned the silver as they finished second in both the short program and free skate. In their “All Alone” short program, the Russians earned 65.17 points combined with their free skate of 132.67 points for a total of 197.84. The point total in Moscow is more than 20 points higher than their gold total in Japan and more than 11 points higher than their gold total in China.

Berton & Hotarek earned their first-ever medal in the Grand Prix series with a bronze after finishing fourth at the NHK Trophy. The Italian champions finished third in both the short program and free skate and earned a total score of 168.02.

Ice Dancing

Final Results

Americans Meryl Davis & Charlie White continued their winning streak as they earned gold in Russia ahead of Canadians Kaitlyn Weaver & Andrew Poje and Russians Ekaterina Bobrova & Dmitri Soloviev.

The reigning World champions, Davis & White opened with a five-point lead after the short dance where they received 69.94 points, however, the duo danced themselves to a season-best performance in the free dance. Skating their “Die Fledermaus” free dance, the Americans received 109.12 points, nearly 13 points higher than the rest of the competition. Davis & White received execution scores greater than one on each of their eight elements and a component score of 58.27, the highest in the competition by nearly seven points.

Weaver & Poje earned the silver medal, which matched their finish at both Skate Canada and the NHK Trophy. The Canadians finished second in both the short dance and the free dance and had 64.45 points heading into their free dance. In their “Je Suis Malade” free dance, Weaver & Poje earned a personal best score of 96.73 for a personal best total of 161.18, which tops their performance at the 2011 World Championships.

Bobrova & Soloviev, who earned gold at the Cup of China, finished third in both the short dance and the free dance to earn the bronze medal. Their total of 156.83 was nearly seven points less than their winning total in Shanghai.

2011 Rostelecom Cup – Viewer’s Guide

24 Nov

Useful Links (LIVE stream of the Rostelecom Cup)

Starting Order/Results Page  Twitter

TV Schedule/Competition Notes (PDF)  Photo Gallery
2011 Rostelecom Cup

Friday, Nov. 25
6:00 a.m.: Ladies short program
7:35 a.m.: Pairs short program
9:45 a.m.: Men’s short program
11:20 a.m.: Short dance

Saturday, Nov. 26
5:00 a.m.: Ladies free skate
6:45 a.m.: Pairs free skate
8:25 a.m.: Men’s free skate
10:25 a.m.: Free dance

From Russia With LoveRachael Flatt competes at Rostelecom Cup for first time since winning silver in 2008. She began the season at Skate Canada.

Senior YearChristina Gao continues her first international senior season in Moscow. She opened the year with a fi fth-place showing at Cup of China.

Step UpAgnes Zawadaki looks to make a step up onto the podium this year in Russia. She finished fourth at this event a season ago. Zawadzki began the 2011-12 campaign at NHK Trophy two weeks ago.

Go for the GoldJeremy Abbott looks for his second gold of the season after winning Cup of China in early November. Abbott is the reigning Rostelecom Cup bronze medalist and competes here for the third time (4th in 2008). A medal of any color will allow Abbott to qualify for the 2011 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final in December, an event he won in 2008.

Back in ActionBrandon Mroz started the season at NHK Trophy a few weeks ago where he landed the first ever quad Lutz in an ISU competition during the short program. He competes in Russia for the first time since placing seventh at this event in 2009.

First TimersAshley Cain & Joshua Reagan make their Grand Prix Series Debut in Moscow. The 2011 U.S. junior champions started the season by finishing fourth at 2011 Cup of Nice. They have not competed in Russia before.

StreakingMeryl Davis & Charlie White look to make it eight straight gold medals with a win in Moscow. Dating back to the beginning of the 2010 Grand Prix season, the duo has won seven straight competitons. They are the reigning Grand Prix Final champions and a medal here will earn them a fourth trip to the Final.

Last WeekAlissa Czisny qualified for the Grand Prix Final thanks to a third-place finish. Czisny is the reigning Grand Prix champion. Adam Rippon and Amanda Evora & Mark Ladwig finished fourth while Madison Chock & Evan Bates placed fifth.

ITNY Honors Weir with Gala Benefit

23 Nov

By Lynn Rutherford

In October, skating luminaries joined many in New York’s business and philanthropic communities to honor Johnny Weir at Ice Theatre of New York’s 2011 Benefit Gala and Performance.

The three-time U.S. champion joined ITNY’s company on ice and then joined guests for an auction, dinner and testimonial and video retrospective of his career.

“Growing up, I remember always seeing these incredible people with the black sweatshirts and the white writing,” the Weir said of ITNY’s longtime iconic logo. “Nothing was more glamorous to me, then and now. I’m so honored to be invited to perform with these real ice people.”

“We honor Johnny Weir for being an enthusiastic supporter of artistic skating,” Moira North, ITNY’s founder and artistic director, said. “We so much appreciate all he has done, performance-wise, for ITNY over the years.”

In a brief acceptance speech, Weir shared his personal philosophy with attendees including Dick Button, Ken Shelley, Richard “Mr. Debonair” Dwyer, Aja Zanova Steindler and Tom Collins.

“Do what you believe in,” he said. “I hope you march to your own beat and everyone else can deal with it.”

The gala also honored Margarita Sears, founder of the Will Sears Foundation in the memory of her son Will Sears, winner of the 2002 U.S. novice title (with Katie Boxwell). The Foundation is devoted to assisting U.S. pairs reach their competitive potential.

In the days prior to its gala, ITNY held three performances at Sky Rink, reprising some old favorites and debuting three new pieces. The company included former U.S. competitors including two-time U.S. ice dance bronze medalist Brent Bommentre; three-time U.S. ice dance medalist Eve Chalom, who also acted as rehearsal director; and Jamie Silverstein, who won the 1999 World ice dance junior title with Justin Pekarek.

They found that despite their impressive competitive credentials, ITNY opened up whole new challenges.

“With the ice dancing I’ve done in the past, I didn’t have to match a group’s movements,” Silverstein said. “If I wanted to take an extra breath, I could. At ITNY it reads better if all the skaters look the same. You’re all pulling together to tell the story.”

2013 U.S. Figure Skating Championships Logo and Tickets

21 Nov

U.S. Figure Skating and the Omaha Sports Commission announced today that All-Event ticket packages are now on sale for the 2013 U.S. Figure Skating Championships. The championships are set for Jan. 20-27, 2013, at the CenturyLink Center Convention Center and Arena in Omaha, Neb. Click here for more information.

For information on the 2012 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, held in San Jose, Calif. from Jan. 22-29, 2012, click here.

Czisny Earns Bronze at 2011 Trophee Eric Bompard

20 Nov

Useful Links (Recaps from Trophee Bompard)

Starting Order/Results Page  Twitter

TV Schedule/Competition Notes (PDF)  Photo Gallery

2011 Trophee Bompard


Final Results

Czisny, who earned gold at 2011 Hilton HHonors Skate America, earned her second Grand Prix medal of the season, bronze, which qualifies her for the Grand Prix Final, an event she won last year. Although Czisny struggled on a triple Lutz during her short program, she came back strong to win the free skate. Skating to “Valse Triste”, Czisny’s free skate performance included five triple jumps and three level four spins, earning a new personal best score of 121.90 points. Combined with her short program score of 57.25, she earned 179.15 points overall. Russian Elizaveta Tuktamisheva earned the gold, marking her second victory of the Grand Prix season, having won Skate Canada earlier this year. Her Latin-themed free skate included a triple Lutz-triple toe, a double Axel-triple toe, and a triple Salchow-double toe-double loop, earning 120.85 points. Her short program garnered 62.04 points for an overall total of 182.89. Italy’s Carolina Kostner won the silver medal after a free skate that included a level four step sequence, a triple toe-double toe-double toe and a level four flying camel spin. Kostner’s Mozart free skate earned 119.62 points, Combined with her short program score of 59.70, she earned 179.32 points overall.


Final Results

American Adam Rippon finished fourth for the second time this Grand Prix season, narrowly missing the podium. Topping the podium was Patrick Chan of Canada. He eaned 72.96 points for his short program and 156.44 for his free skate for a total of 240.60 points and a 16 point gap over the rest of the competition. In addition to completing three triple jumps and two level four spins, Chan, who skated to “Concierto de Aranjuez,” also landed two quad toe loops, one in combination with a triple toe. Nan Song of China finished in second after a free skate that, like Chan, included two quad toe loops. Set to the music from the Requiem for a Dream soundtrack, Song completed a triple Axel and a triple Axel-double toe, earning 147.57 points for his free skate. His short program garnered 76.53 points, for an overall total of 224.10 points. Michal Brezina of the Czech Republic earned the bronze. Brezina’s The Untouchables free skate included a triple flip-triple toe combination, a triple Axel-double toe combination, and a triple Axel. He accumulated 144.28 points for his free skate and 74.32 for his short program for an overall total of 218.60. Skating to “Air” and “Toccata and Fugue” by Bach, Rippons’s free skate included a triple Axel-triple toe loop, a triple loop, and a triple flip-double toe along with a level four change foot combination spin and a level four flying camel spin. He earned 72.96 points for his short program and 144.93 for his free skate for a total of 217.89 points overall.


Final Results

Amanda Evora & Mark Ladwig took fourth in Paris. Skating to “Daphnis and Chloe,” the Americans free skate included a throw triple Lutz, a triple twist, and a level four back inside death spiral, earning 111.89 points. Combined with their short program score of 57.59, they earned 169.58 points. Tatiana Volosozhar & Maxim Trankov of Russia won gold in Paris. The highlights of their Black Swan free skate included three level four lifts and two throw triples, earning 130.44 points. They earned 63.69 points for their short program for a total of 194.13 points. Their Russian teammates, Vera Bazarova & Yuri Larinov, took second place with a 184.91 point total. The duo completed a level four pairs spin, a set of side by side triple toes and a throw triple flip. Canada’s Meagan Duhamel & Eric Radford won the bronze medal. Their free skate performance, set to music from Coldplay, completed three level four lifts and two level four combination spins, earning 115.56 points. Combined with their short program score of 61.06, they earned 176.62 points overall.

Ice Dancing

Final Results

Americans Madison Chock & Evan Bates finished fifth in Paris, earning 130.94 points. Canada’s Tessa Virtue & Scott Moir took first, marking their second Grand Prix victory this season. During their Funny Face free dance, the duo completed level four twizzles and five level four lifts, earning 105.75 points. Combined with their short dance score of 71.18, they earned 176.93 overall points and secured a spot in the Grand Prix Final. Nathalie Pechalat & Fabian Bourzat of France won the silver medal. They earned 164.56 points overall and their second Grand Prix silver medal, having placed second at Skate America. During their free dance, Pechalat & Bourzat completed four level four lifts, a level four spin and level four twizzles, earning 98.04 points, bringing their point total to 164.56 points. Finishing out the podium, Italy’s Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte, took bronze. Skating their free dance to “La Strada,” they earned 89.14 points and received level fours on five of their nine elements. They earned 64.62 points for their short dance for an overall total of 153.76.

2011 Trophee Eric Bompard – Viewer’s Guide

17 Nov

Useful Links (LIVE stream of Trophee Bompard)

Starting Order/Results Page  Twitter

TV Schedule/Competition Notes (PDF)  Photo Gallery

2011 Trophee Bompard

Schedule (all times Eastern):

Friday, Nov. 18
9:00 a.m.: Men’s short program
10:45 a.m.: Pairs short program
12:15 p.m.: Ladies short program
2:00 p.m.: Short dance

Saturday, Nov. 19
7:30 a.m.: Men’s free skate
9:30 a.m.: Pairs free skate
12:30 p.m.: Ladies free skate
2:30 p.m.: Free dance

Golden GirlAlissa Czisny skates for her second gold medal of the season after winning the 2011 Hilton HHonors Skate America title to start the season. She makes her second consecutive trip to France for this event. She is the reigning bronze medalist.

Les DeuxAdam Rippon won the bronze medal at 2009 Trophée Bompard. Competing on the Grand Prix circuit since 2008, Rippon owns three medals. He fell just short of medaling at his first event of the 2011 campaign, placing fourth at Skate Canada International three weeks ago.

First Time for Everything – Though Amanda Evora & Mark Ladwig have competed internationally together since 2003, this will mark their first trip to France to compete on behalf of the United States. They opened the season with a fourth-place finish at Cup of China two weeks ago.

Put Me In, CoachMadison Chock & Evan Bates got the call last week to compete in Paris after a withdrawal. The newly formed team finished fourth at Skate Canada and third at Finlandia Trophy. Bates and his former partner, Emily Samuelson, placed fourth at this event in 2009 while Chock is the reigning bronze medalist with former partner, Greg Zuerlein.

What Happened Last Week?Maia Shibutani & Alex Shibutani earned their first career Grand Prix Series gold medal at 2011 NHK Trophy. They vaulted from third after the short dance to edge Canada’s Kaitlyn Weaver & Andrew Poje for the gold. Both teams secured their spots at the 2011 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final. Ross Miner won the bronze medal, his first of any color on the Grand Prix circuit.

The rest of Team USA at NHK Trophy
Ladies: Ashley Wagner (4th), Agnes Zawadzki (8th)
Men: Armin Mahbanoozadeh (8th), Brandon Mroz (9th)
Pairs: Caydee Denney & John Coughlin (5th), Marissa Castelli & Simon Shnapir (7th)
Ice dancing: Lynn Kriengkrairut & Logan Giulietti-Schmitt (6th)