We’ve already seen two grand-prix events and they were pretty exiting to watch. So, I hope that next event Audi Cup of China will be no less intriguing. For some skaters it’ll be their second GP event and maybe someone will already make into the grand-prix final.
Here is my list of 10 main intrigues of Cup of China:
- Can Javier Fernandez prove his world title?
Now Javier Fernandez is a world champion. Maybe nothing has changed personally for him but a lot has changed in eyes of judges and viewers. They expect him to skate like a world champion. Is he ready this early in the season to prove that? Can he count all his salchows correctly and win in China? Definitely yes, he’s the favorite to win. What is also interesting is whether his presentation and confidence has changed whether he’s a champion now?
2. How many quads will Boyang Jin do?
Boyang Jin’s planned content looks terrifying! Short program: 4Lz+3T, 3A, 4T. Free program: 4Lz, 4S, 3A, 4T+2T, 4T, 3Lz+3T, 3F+1Lo+3S, 3Lo. Wow. Honestly I don’t believe that he will do and land them all, but even with a few mistakes ans low components score it’s a claim at least for pedestal.
3. Mao Asada is back
Mao Asada made a bright come back at Japan Open earlier this season. Her free program is just gorgeous! Can she repeat it? Can she land he 3 axel? Can she beat the Russian girls? I think the answer to all this question will be “yes”. At least I hope for it) Good luck Mao!
4. Can both Russian ladies be on the pedestal?
In China we will see two Russian ladies Elena Radionova and Anna Pogorilaya. Both of them have good chances to win a medal. I worry a bit for Elena because her coach is ill and she went to China alone. It’s also seems that she has some puberty issues (according to her coach’s recent interview). But even though Elena and Anna are the main contenders for the pedestal. The only one who I think can prevent them to be together on the pedestal are Zijun Li and Rika Hongo. The ladies event promise to be exciting!
5. Will we see a clean skate with quads from Sui & Han?
Wenjing Sui – Cong Han are an absolute favorite to win. But main question is whether they can do two clean skates with quad twist and quad throw in the free program. And what will be their makers and will it be higher than Duhamel and Radford got at Skate Canada last week?
6. Will it be a Chinese pedestal in pairs event?
Can Chinese pairs repeat their last season’s success? I think Xiaoyu Yu – Yang Jin have good chances to win a medal, but I’m not so sure about Xuehan Wang – Lei Wang, they had really bad skate at Skate America. Maybe the home crowd will help? The pair who can prevent Chinese triumph is Yuko Kavaguti – Alexander Smirnov. That is why the next question is…..
7. In what shape now Kavaguti & Smirnov?
Yuko and Alexander usually are early in the good shape and well prepared for the beginning of the season. They kept their old (extremely gorgeous and stunning) free program what can make it a bit easier to feel comfortable and confident. But they also are planning to add another quad throw! Will see how it turn out.
8. Another win and GP Final for Chock and Bates?
It will be second GP event for Madison and Evan. And theoretically they can place from 1st to 4th places to get into the GP Final in Barcelona. But I doubt that they’re considering any place at Cup of China except first. I’m really intrigued what scores they will get (taking into account scores WEaver and Poje got), because at their home Skate America their marks for the free dance wasn’t impressive.
9. Are Cappellini and Lanotte ready to fight?
We haven’t seen Anna and Luca at serious international competitions yet, only at their home B event. The marks were pretty solid but we all know how it usually happens at home events, so I wouldn’t rely on that marks for 100%. But we also seen that Anna and Luca in great shape (and they could improve since that) and how good their dances are. Both the short and the free are totally in their style, suits them a lot and can present them in the best way. The main question is whether it’ll be silver or bronze? I would bet on silver.
10. Is it a time for Ilinykh and Zhiganshin to breakthrough?
Sinitsina and Katsalapov were quite impressive at Skate America and with a silver medal have pretty good chances to get the support of Russian Federation and get into the GP Final. Bobrova and Soloviev weren’t as good as the Federation expected but they are more consistent and that was their first international event after a year break. That is why If Elena and Ruslan want to prove that they are the best ice dancers in Russia It’s exactly a time to go and show themselves. What can prevent them to do that? I think the short dance.
You can see new dances of Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte here
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