Cup of China 2016: review

Cup of China 2016

Grand-prix in China was a pretty screwy for me. Firstly, I locked at the wrong shedule, calculated the wrong time….got up at 4 a.m., turned on my computer just to discover that stream is going to start in 5 hours…Then I planned to watch it at work, but there happened an urgent disaster, so of course I didn’t watch anything. I think the Universe was trying to tell me, that it’s better not to watch short programs)

Cup of China 2016

The Russians call Cup of China the friendly grand-prix, but Chinese don’t share Russian passion to ice dance, and put it first – enjoy your ice dance early in the morning)

I definately need to remember Chinese team Linshu SONG / Zhuoming SUN. I’ve never seen before how a Chinese guy in ice dance tries to really perform to All the single ladies by Beyonce.

I think Shiyue WANG / Xinyu LIU improved a lot. Both in technique and purity of their lines and skating. And the guy has such a posture!

I don’t like when skaters try to change their costume right in the program, especially in the short dance. I think if ice dancers need a costume change to show the change of style it means they’re bad dancers. Sorry, Polish team. But I liked their FD to Dirty dances is a charming program.

I think Sinitsina and Katsalapov have the best dances in Russian team, but they’re don’t look ready and polished. I don’t expect them to improve significantly till GP in Japan, because I don’t believe in miracles. But I hope that this season won’t end for them at the Russian Nationals. Even though, I have a feeling that Russian figure skating federation have already made their bets. So, I’m predicting a great fight between I and K for the third place.

I like how Stepanova – Bukin improved this season, but best at this grand-prix?) Oh, I think Bestemyanova is loosing her connection with reality) I like thier short dance it’s something fresh . Her long legs in black trousers deserve a couple of extra points in PCS) But what’s going on in their free dance? Whom she’s trying to kick all the time?)

Well, Russian Nationals in ice dance promise to be exciting) Are you prepared?


When Weaver and Poje stopped to wear heavy costumes with lots of rhinestones – they started to look younger and Andrew even started to look thiner. It remains only to remove Kaitlyn’s makeup of raccoon and I’ll be ready to loose my mind because of their beauty in the short dance. I also going to close my eyes during their twizzles. But I don’t really see some changes in their free dance, I think they’ve been skating such dances all this cycle. Ok, the first lift is new and great, but that’s all.

I don’t know what some people lacked in Shibutanies‘ dances, but it’s actually dances and they’re actually dancing, telling the story with their bodies and skates. I like their short dance is’s very stylish. I don’t like such dances as their free dance, but it blew me away….But I think it’s impossible to beat the Freanch with their own style, no matter how good it looks on you.

Cup of china 2016
Courtney HICKS is a girl of extremes, either medal or failure and no middle options.

Maybe it’s a Chinese camera shooting, or Chinese ecology, but almost everyone seemed to me much slower than usual. Lovely Zijun Li I really wanted to push and make her skate faster. And what does symbolize her final pose in the free program? ‘I am at your feet, please give me higher PCS?’

If one day Karen Chen manages to do all her jumps and be careful with her body, she will be star. This girl has it all and she’s a great performer.

Ashley, I’m shocked. I have never seen her so slow and dead in her short program! In the free program all the underrotations were obvious, but it didn’t affect my impression from this program. It’s simply stunning and flies in one moment. When a skaters understands what she’s skating and what she wants to say with her performance it can’t leave your indifferent. It’s a pity we won’t see her in GPF! Maybe it was an acclimatisation or maybe her coach shouldn’t give such honest but not very polite interview….well if you believe in Karma.

I continue to demand to return Rika Hongo in fiery programs! Without them it’s difficult to watch her skating.

Mai Mihara is a lovely skater, but still juniorish. Thanks for charming waltz by Patrick Doyle. I wish junior skaters paid more attention to his music)

Liza did the right thing, and ditched that Cleopatra program. However, now Cleopatra migrated to Mozart. Although, after tango he will endure everything. I always knew that support from the audience is very important for Liza than she feels comfortable and can really sell the program. Her step sequence from Per Gynt awakened even the Chinese audience, which previously was giving only a polite claps after some successful elements. I can’t handle myself I’ll say everything I think about her dress…..Why I have a feeling that she forgot to wear her skirt?

When Kaetlyn Osmond succesed with her elements judges are ready to give her good GOE. And I do understand them, she has impressive elements and her programs don’t fell apart even with mistakes on jumps. But where to find some consistancy for Canadian girls? I can see Kaetlyn and Gabriella both do great in the short program at Canadian Nationals and then it’ll be a competition who do less mistakes in the free. Who’s your bet?

I always believed in Elena Radionova‘s will to victory, she fights even for the most unsuccessful jumps and somehow saves them! Let it be no beautiful landings but she saves it! I have a feeling that when the nature was distributing the will to win and character between the future members of the Russian national figure skating team, girls got it all) Love her short program – very stylish. And I also like her fluffy dress)

Cup of china 2016
The main topic of pairs‘ competition was fight with jumps. Jumps won.

Matteo Guarise‘s skinny jumpsuit with an open back and an effect of burn distracts from all other impressions from their skating.

It was sad and painful to watch Yuko and Alexander‘s performances. Did they really need this grand-prix? I think it’d have been better for them to skip it and prepare to Russian Nationals.

In short Luba and Dylan almost convinced me that happiness is near. Alas, all hopes were destroyed at the free program( Before it was only Luba who struggled on jumps, now Dylan joined her…..

Well, I’m going to take back all my complaints. Chinese figure skating federation knew what they were doing. New pairs turn out very promising and competitive.

Chen Peng no longer looks like a frightened girl. And she still has such a beautiful position in death spiral and landing position on throws. I was surprised to see her and Yang Jin in a slightly ironic short program. This pair can be different and can try different styles for their programs.

Hao Zhang fell…..*here should be a smiley face with a bulging-eyed* The Wall has fallen, the White Walkers break into Westeros. Xiaoyu YU doesn’t look like a frightened girl near him. On the contrary, she skates with a look as it’s a great honor for him to skate with her. Wow) And the first time I saw that Hao Zhang was embarrassed and apologized to his partner) Tournament of surprising discoveries)

Cup of china 2016

And men for dessert.

Michal Brzezina tired to be forever fourth, and decided to change something radically. Now he’s not the fourth, but the last. Well, I hope the bottom is reached and now only upward. Michal, do what you want, but you have to skate well at the European Championships at home.

I’m so sad for Daniel Samohin. It seemed that last starting number, the possibility of medal and great performances of other competitors pressured him a lot. But it’s also an experience, he’s young and he’ll learn to deal with such situations.

For the short program Maxim Kovtun decided to dress up and prepared a coat that reminds me of Dolce and Gabbana. Alas, branded clothes did not help. the light shade of doom suits his free program. Alas, the doom wasn’t light. I don’t know whether it’s even possible to teach an athlete to love competition and make him a fighter.

I don’t understand people, who scold Alexander Petrov. Well, he has no quad. But has a sober assessment of his capabilities and has an ability to show everything he can. Hopefully next season he will continue to work with Ge on choreography. Perhaps Misha will also take him on shopping  – to dress up.

Han Yan – my Chinese pain. I console myself with the thought that indigo jacket with luxurious sleeves from ladies’ blouses  become a victim of an accident … ..maybe, Chinese cockroaches ate it, and instead Han got simple and gorgeous costume for his free program.

Probably Maxwell Theodore thought that not everyone guessed what is his free program about. And he gave the last hint. Oh this sports suit with a golden lion) But you know, his free program gives me so many positive emotions)

Change of coach affect Sergei Voronov as Red Bull – give him wings. I’m serious, all my deepest respects to Sergei. His was written off, people didn’t believe in him, but he’s fresher and more reliable than all the Russian youth in men’s skating. Muse helps him a lot, this music sets him to a fight.

You may not believe me, but when I have opened the result of men’s SP and saw Boyang in the first place, I smiled. I thought, ok they both will be in the final. I didn’t believe that the leader can change. Shame on me.

This season they picked up a very wise programs for Boyang. His spiderman is so charming and makes me smile. When else to skate a superhero if not in 17?) I also like his costume for the FP without waistcoat, but they need to work on it. We all trust that Jin is skinny, we don’t need a demonstration) I’m really sorry that Bojan will not be in the final. He is a great motivator for others to skate great !)

The sun is up, the sky is blue. It’s beautiful and so are you. Patrick Chan is a fascinating skater. One day he breakes your heart, the next day he makes you love him even more.

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13 Comments on Cup of China 2016: review

  1. Mad for Skating // 22/11/2016 at 20:43 // Reply

    (formerly Stolbova Obsessed, but that felt awkward at the top of Duhamel-Radford cheer posts LOL)
    OK, here goes for the long post of the week:

    I didn’t watch much of dance, so forgive me:
    I LOVE Kaitlyn and Andrew’s short dance! Usually I don’t like Michael Jackson programs but they make it really work. The free is beautiful, though I agree some of it was borrowed from their other dances.

    The Shibutanis…I adore them. The SD is lots of fun, and the FD is pretty. They skate so well.

    Ladies:
    I love both Zijun and Karen. They’re beautiful skaters. I was kind of wondering about Zijun’s closing pose too, but I just love her program so much that I don’t care how it ends.

    Ashley…ugh, this is bad! The short program is not quite my taste, but it suits her, and I agree, the free program is amazing, I actually thought her presentation mark could’ve been even higher. I was really hoping to see her in the GPF but…these things do happen.

    Rika Hongo: No fire, no life.

    Mai Mihara is so adorable on the ice, she looks like the girls who come to pick up the flowers from the ice. But she has great jumps.

    Liza…well, she pulled together a clean free skate. I don’t love her Peer Gynt program, and the dressmaker should get deported to Siberia, but she hit the jumps and that’s what counts.

    Kaetlyn Osmond is a great skater, deserves her PCS and all, but I’m surprised at how she came up from nowhere. I’d almost forgotten about her, and now…it’s like a Cinderella story.

    Well, I’ve always tried to have faith in Elena, and sure enough, she pulled together some great skates. She needs to work on the skating skills, she kind of runs across the ice sometimes. But she looks very good.

    Sorry…I didn’t watch much of pairs either.

    Yuko and Alexander are really no fun without quads. Their triple throws are small, and their lack of chemistry really shows in the short program. I like them, but I think they need: 1. a new short program 2. more time to prepare 3. more feistiness from Yuko. Come on, are you a fierce pair girl or not?

    Luba and Dylan…so close, and then the free skate. I feel bad for them.

    The Chinese switch actually went pretty well! I’m surprised. But I think Sui and Han will remain China’s #1 pair.

    MEN:
    Before the GP started, I predicted that Daniel Samohin would beat Patrick Chan in SOMETHING. That was apparently the short program only. He had a great short and a really bad free. His attitude reminds me of Scott Moir for some reason. He’s got potential, but every time the door opens, he goes splat.

    I think Kovtun is done, personally. Kolyada or Voronov will win nationals this year.

    Speaking of Sergei, wow! Inna has done wonders for him. I think Eteri gets results with the youngsters (intimidating the heck out of them until they learn to jump) but not adult skaters. Inna seems to understand the skaters as people, and that helps. Sergei looks solid on the jumps. His short program is a little boring to me, but the free is stunning.

    Boyang is a cute little skater, I like his Spiderman. But he still needs some help with the edges, he definitely is not like Patrick. It’s sad he’s not in the Final, but since I’m American, I’m happy that at least the US will get some men in now. Jason, Adam, and Nathan have the chance to fill those last spots.

    Patrick…oh my gosh, that free program was the highlight of the event for me. Watching him, I remember why I first started watching skating in the first place. It’s so beautiful. Eric’s music really fits him. I was screaming and almost crying and yelling “YES!” through the whole thing. I really love him. Not a great short program, but the good old Chan-pion took charge in the free and left very few points on the table.

    This has been lots of fun. Sorry that I didn’t review everything – I am saving energy for NHK!

    • I didn’t say thay WP borrowed some elements from their last dances, it’s just a bit in the same style.

      ‘the dressmaker should get deported to Siberia’
      Haha he/she will have a great company there: Tarasova Morozov’s designer and choreographer, Anna Pogorilaya’s designer…..Maybe it’s the same person?)

      Ashley’s FD is amazing. You know, sometimes I try on skaters’ program for myself (in my mind ;) ) and Ashley’s program works perfectly for me)) Maybe that’s why I like it so much, because I undrstand it and feel it.

      I think Yuko and Sasha choose wrong programs to repeat. They already used Clair de la lune for two seasons in a row, so I just don’t see its magic anymore. And this SP is just one of my least favorite among their programs.

      Oh, Jason and Adam….I honestly don’t know whom I want to see in GPFinal more.

      Patrick was breathtaking….I actually don’t have much words to describe and don’t know whether it even necessary to say something)

      • Mad for Skating // 23/11/2016 at 18:27 // Reply

        Siberia will be full of deportees from the skating world – T/M’s costume designer, Hubbell/Donohue’s SD choreographer, Averbukh, Liza’s dressmaker…LOL.

        Ashley’s free program is flawless. Imagine how gorgeous it’ll be if she lands all the jumps!

        I agree that Yuko and Sasha’s programs aren’t the right ones to repeat. Doing Clair de Lune again is like if Ashley decided to reuse Moulin Rouge in a few years. It was a great program the first time, not bad for a second year, but by the third year, everyone is sick of it. And the SP does not suit them at all. Yuko doesn’t have that sassy rock-and-roll look that the program is about – a program like that should be for Alexa Scimeca or something.

        I love both Jason and Adam, and lucky for us, there’s still a chance that both of them could qualify. If Nathan’s quads don’t work at NHK (or the judges REALLY get sick of his plushy pants:)), then Jason and Adam will qualify, and Nathan will be left out of the Grand Prix Final. I personally wouldn’t mind that. With the current standings, I think it’s likely that Jason will get in, unless he finishes very low at NHK. Adam just has to hope that Nathan doesn’t get silver at NHK. It’s very possible!

        I don’t have words for Patrick’s free skate either…I was so happy for him. And thank goodness he’s into the Grand Prix Final!

        • Agree, Yuko looks weird in sexy programs( plus I don’t see any chemistry between them( And their ‘lift’ at the beginning makes me even laugh(

          This season both Jason’s programs are so great and it’s a great pleasure to watch. Hope he’ll be in Grand-prix Final.

          Patrick, well I’m not objective when it comes to Patrick)

          • Mad for Skating // 28/11/2016 at 13:24 // Reply

            Sorry I was gone so long! I can only use so much internet per month, or I get charged extra money.

            There’s no chemistry between Yuko and Sasha because Sasha is married to somebody else :)

            I’m so sad that Jason did not qualify to the final…I think of him the way you think of Patrick!

            • I wish Jason a lot of luck at US Nationals, because I egoistically want to see him skating as much as possible, so I hope he’ll qualify to Worlds.

              Oh, it’s better for me not to tell in what way I can think about Patrick)))

              • Mad for Skating // 30/11/2016 at 16:10 // Reply

                I want to see Jason skate as much as possible too! And I TOTALLY understand you’re in love with Patrick. )))

                • with his skating) Who knows what kind of person he is)

                  • Mad for Skating // 01/12/2016 at 23:52 // Reply

                    I’ve heard he’s very sweet, and not afraid to speak up about things. I have a friend who also likes him a lot.

                    • Interesting what do you mean by ‘not afraid to speak up about things’ )))

                    • Mad for Skating // 07/12/2016 at 13:41 //

                      Well, he tells when he’s not happy about a performance. He doesn’t try to pretend that he’s happy. He’s honest, and I like that in a person.

                    • I agree with you. I don’t like when all skaters give the same interviews ‘I tried my best, I skate not for medals, I don’t judge the result, I’m so happy just to skate here etc’ Yeah it’s polite and pretty but not always true. I want to see some more personality. Someone can call his interviews arrogant but at least he says what he thinks and don’t hide behind the polite answers. I also really like Ashley Wagner for the same approach – she doesn’t hide behind polite answers.

  2. jimmbboe // 22/11/2016 at 17:05 // Reply

    Ashley was a shocker, for sure!

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