World Championships 2017 review: ladies

Posted on 2017-04-05 • 31 comments


I continue sharing my impression of World Championships 2017.

I’ve already written about pairs and this part is about ladies.

“One average boy is better than two promising girls”, Alexei Mishin said once. Ironically, these two promising girls were his ticket for this World Championships. Not Russian and not claiming for medals.

Unfortunately, the miraculous Mishin has not helped Zijun Li yet. There’s still an impression that she will fall asleep in the middle of her program. Looking at such fragile girls, it always seems to me that if they are fed at least sometimes, the results will go up.

A low bow to Alexei Mishin for Carolina. I am a realist and I understand that her shape by this time is already a miracle. It’s always a joy to watch Carolina skating (at least for me). Was there at least one not graceful gesture? I doubt it. Low result? Carolina had even worse one. It’s no longer about medals and places. Art probably would be the right word. I’m so happy that World championships 2018 will take place in Italy. Such athlete as Carolina deserves to finish her career with a standing ovation of a home crowd – to spite all enemies.

Seems it was too early to include Laurine Lecavelier into the breakthrough list. Oh, you can never be sure with this girls! It’s a pity, because there is something fresh in her skating. Well, the breakthrough, as for herself, did another girl – Loena Hendrickx. She’s lovely girl with a surprisingly good jumps and beautiful skating. Think I will prolong the membership in the team Hendrickx fan club.

Oh, Anna …… .another heartbreaking performance. I even can’t say that it is new to us … ..just, we really wanted to believe that it was left in the past. I would like to write that it’s ok, happens, there will be a new season and everything will still be … But I do not want to write things I do not believe in. So if the Russian skating federation does not choose Anna for Olympics, I will understand. It will terrybly sad, but I will understand the position of the federation.

Japanese girls lost three spots. Again, I can’t say that it was out of the blue. It was quite predictable since the moment Satoko Miyahara announced her injury. I didn’t have much hope in this trio.  Rika is completely not in shape, Wakaba also lacks physical shape for the free program. All the hope was for a positive jumper Mai Mihara … ..who would know…. Japan in sorrow. Next season Japanese National Championships will be heartbreaking.

They should have sent Mao. I doubt that reasult would have been much better. At least the audience would have gotten a lot of pleasure from her skating.

American girls by some miracle saved three spots. Not exactly miracle….I’d say by blinking. Judges generously blinked on all Karen Chen’s and Ashley Wagner’s under rotations. Karen’s underrotstions were visible even from famous Finnish camera angle “somewhere under the ceiling”, but the judges did not notice ;)

What happened to Diva Wagner? At this Worlds Ashley was without spark in her eyes and without mindset to beat everyone. Well, it’s not how it works….and it didn’t work out. By the end of the season, her SP started to look like a nightclub at five in the morning …… someone is already sleeping on the bar, someone is still languidly dancing……… At the far end of the hall they have already started cleaning and the guard would soon ask everyone to leave … ..Beautiful free program also didn’t impress me much….

Ashley, do not be upset, you get a consolation prize personally from me – a victory in the nomination “the best dress of ladies’ event”.

I remembered Elizabet Tursynbayeva only because of her mother and Yuna Kim’s dress. I still don’t understand why they did it, you can put on any dress but you won’t become Yuna.

Well done, Da Bin Choi! In her case it  was almost impossible to win two spots for the Olympics. But she was lucky – the others helped and she did not blunder herself.

Nature gave Maria Sotskova grace and refinement. It’s a pity nature didn’t gave her some kind of spark. Her SP was so boring … ..Just this program is not for her, maybe for someone like Adelina. FP is better, but Masha’s clean skating remained at the same place – at the Russian Nationals.

Evgenia Medvedeva – an iron lady of figure skating. Her ability to get the right mindset, to concentrate and show her maximum amazes me. But her programs ……She grew out of her short program not by the end of the season, it was too childish from the beginning. I do not like 13-year-old Carmen, but a girl with…..let’s say a girl with a not childish upper body who jumps on a rope….looks strange and ridiculous. Free program I do not want to comment at all. Mr. Averbukh, do not flatter yourself, Zhenya’s scores is solely her merit. I want to believe that Zhenya and her team understand this too.

And on the background of ropes and sirens wailing there are 4 cool programs of Canadian girls. Not one, not two. but four! Four high class programs that emphasized all the strengths of Kaetlyn and Gabrielle. Such as speed, power, energy and huge jumps. Yes, I’m already sick of Gershwin in blue dresses, but I must admit that it was a great choice. I didn’t believe in two clean performances for both of them. Girls proved that I was wrong. And that’s great! This was the main surprise of the competition for me. A very pleasant one.

To be continued.


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31 Responses to “World Championships 2017 review: ladies”

  1. Rachel says:

    Ashley and her longtime boyfriend broke up. Maybe that caused lack of sparkle

  2. jimmbboe says:

    Yay for Kaetlyn and Gabrielle!!

    So sad for Anna.

    What more can be said about Carolina? She is awesome! Glad she did so well :)

  3. Carina says:

    I have no question about Evgenia’s techniques and that iron will. Honestly I want to see her keep succeeding for a couple more years instead of becoming a quick falling star like other Russian ladies.

    But she should really work with other choreographers. I like the SP music but some of the moves are a bit ridiculous. And FS music itself is fine (although really heavy) but the extra sound effects they added in it are both annoying and offending (to some people).

    Give her something classic and romantic. Develop some new moves.

    • FS Gossips says:

      Well, Evgenia is already not a quick falling star, no matter how the next season will go for her. She’s already a two-time World and European Champion and two-time winner of Grand-prix final. That’s pretty impressive.

      And unfortunately I doubt she’ll change a choreographer(

      • Mad for Skating says:

        To survive two full seasons in Russia is a miracle.

      • Carina says:

        True. With the level of competitiveness among the Russian ladies, being able to stay afloat for two whole years really is very impressive.

        I just wish that now she’s proved herself to be much more than a one-hit wonder, Evgenia will have more opportunities to work with other talented people who can help her improve more. Someone who speaks Russian should write to Eteri Tutberidze and tell her how umimpressed we are with the music and choreography…

    • Mad for Skating says:

      Exactly! She is a talented girl and deserves a long career and good choreographers. Come on, there are so many good ones in the country! I like Tamara Moskvina.

  4. skating fan says:

    When I saw Gabrielle in a blue dress and Gershwin started I thought that it can’t be interesting, but I think that she pulled it off very well, determination could be seen on her face and I like such powerful skating. I immensely enjoyed watching her skating to it. Besides I like watching such emotions in Kiss&Cry corner, I was so happy for her!

    Carolina’s SP is great, I love her choice of music. It is completely different and unique. I hope that next time she will skate it better.

    I think that you are right that a romantic program would suit Evgenia, she is sweet and charming. Maybe something from La La Land?

    • Mad for Skating says:

      I’ve seen many blue Gershwin programs – we can blame Yuna Kim for that trend – but Gabrielle skated it so well.

      Carolina’s SP is just so original and lovely.

      Ooh, La La Land! She and Ashley could have a La La Land face-off!

      • FS Gossips says:

        “Carolina’s SP is just so original and lovely.”
        Interesting whether she’s going to keep one of her programs for next season.

        • Mad for Skating says:

          She didn’t skate on the Grand Prix so these programs have only been performed a handful of times. I’d be fine if she kept them for another year.

    • FS Gossips says:

      I think Gabriella’s SP is one of my most favorite this season. I discovered this music for myself, I haven’t heard it before. It’s definitely was something new and exciting for me. So I can easily forgive her Gershwin in blue dress)

      La la land I’d keep for ice dancers) I’d give Evgenia something like Pride and prejudice)

      • Mad for Skating says:

        OMG you know I actually thought of Pride and Prejudice when looking at Evgenia! She is totally Elizabeth Bennet. That would be great!

        Also Tessa Virtue said they’re considering Pride and Prejudice for their Olympic FD.

        • FS Gossips says:

          “Also Tessa Virtue said they’re considering Pride and Prejudice for their Olympic FD.”
          Well…..I can’t say that I love this idea for them. Because I don’t even remember the music from the movie….Music is a big part of success, especially in ice dance.

  5. Mad for Skating says:

    Usually I don’t find ladies as interesting as I used to, but the irony about Mishin has me laughing and we are barely into this ladies review.

    Zijun is a gorgeous skater, but so delicate that you marvel at how she doesn’t break into pieces on the ice. I love her packaging, the red dress steals the show for me, but somebody really does need to feed her.

    Carolina is so so so beautiful to watch, for me she deserves a gold medal over any waving, phone-calling, rope-jumping phenom! I will love her forever.

    Anna…ugh, I thought her years of terrible falls were over! I was just starting to really like her, I enjoyed her classy programs, but in all honesty that free program was even more disastrous than her dress (don’t get me started on the costume fail) and there’s nothing more to be said. If she could get back to a decent level next season, she could beat out Sotskova for the spot, but I think at this rate it’ll be Medvedeva, Zagitova, and Sotskova. And who knows what Elena Radionova, Elizaveta Tuktamysheva, or Adelina Sotnikova (imagine!) could be cooking up? Or Polina Tsurskaya might come back resurgent…so dearest Anna, please get your jumps in order now. I want to believe she was injured or sick or something.

    I agree on the Japanese girls :( Mai Mihara is adorable and jumps well, and is pretty much their only hope. And I miss Mao too much…those step sequences gave me life.

    Well, thank God for the Finnish camera angles, because we Americans have three spots. Karen saved us with that 4th place – the universe knew we needed it – but now the question is, will she show the results she needs to take one of those three spots?

    Holy queen of sass Ashley suffered from lack of her signature sparkle. The short program was clean but all the way through I felt like I was watching her skate through syrup. Where is Miss Confidence? The swagger was not there. But the dresses deserved a medal for sure <3

    Elizabet’s mother was the highlight of this event for me. The Yuna dress made me smile – it’s like those little girls years ago who went to regional skating competitions dressed like Michelle Kwan. As far as Elizabet herself, I’m tempted to invite her to my house for Thanksgiving dinner and feed her. Apparently her mother is a better cheerleader than a cook.

    Da Bin Choi was really a discovery here – beautiful dresses and skating. I enjoyed her performances and am glad the host nation will have at least 2 girls for the Olympics.

    Maria Sotskova is a beautiful girl, long limbs and elegance, almost like a fairy. But they’re still working on finding the right choreography for her. I just hope they don’t decide to make it “more interesting” and call Averbukh.

    Let’s face it, Evgenia is really a queen. Such determination and talent. As for the programs, she is 17; she’s almost an adult woman, so she should skate programs made for one. That doesn’t mean overly sexy and womanly – just programs that belong at senior Worlds instead of juvenile nationals. I gave up jumping rope many years ago :) She has the look of a romantic heroine from a bygone era, a pretty young lady from a film – I think a romantic program would suit her.

    Kaetlyn and Gabrielle are in my opinion true examples of what ladies’ skating should be – classy, strong, powerful, tasteful, and feminine. They showed great strength to hold up under the pressure and I’m so proud of them.

    Well, ladies’ was a bit more exciting than I thought it would be. Good fight from all and hope it continues!

    • FS Gossips says:

      I read in Vatsekhovskaya’s blog that this season Anna Pogorilaya and her coach had such approach to trainings and run throughs: every time Anna did a mistake, the music was stopped and she started from the beginning. They tried to achieve consistency like that. So when Anna did her first mistake in the free program she didn’t know whta to do next. If it’s true (and I have no reason not to trust Vaitsekhovskaya’s word), it was absolutely stupid. Because the first thing that every coach tries to teach his skater not to give up and fight till the end of the program, to finish the program no matter how many mistakes a skater did. So I have no words….

      Elena Radionova is named for World team trophy, so Federation gives her a chance to show herself. So I guess they are not quite satisfied with Anna and Maria’s performances.

      • Mad for Skating says:

        I see! That’s not a very smart tactic at all. You’ve got to fall, get up, and get back into rhythm. Look at Jason Brown at this event – he missed the opening quad but everything after that worked out great (besides the doubled loop but SO WHAT). So Anna just crumbled. They need to work on a new technique.

        I think this is a good opportunity for Elena. She’s a fighter and she very well might scrape the third spot out of Pogorilaya and Sotskova’s hands (assuming Zagitova and Medvedeva get the other two)

        • FS Gossips says:

          Let’s see what Elena will show us at World Team Trophy. She’s a different type of an athlete than Anna. Anna is more like Grace, when she makes a first mistake you know for sure there will be more. Elena is a fighter, she fights for every landing, for every jump, falls but get up and continue fighting. That’s why I have more trust in Elena, if she’ll manage to cope with her “problems of growing up”.

          • Mad for Skating says:

            Exactly! Elena makes mistakes but she fights past them. I admire that about her. Maybe she’ll have grown into her legs and can pull off good performances. I hope so!

      • skating fan says:

        I didn’t know about World team trophy! It’s great to know that there is the last opportunity in this season to see figure skating. Although I was a little bit sad seeing the list of entries without Ksenia and Fedor and Alexa and Chris.

        • Mad for Skating says:

          Me too. I think Ksenia and Fedor are skipping it because Ksenia is on vacation – last I saw of her, she was in Germany and France having a great time. I’ll miss Alexa and Chris too :(

        • FS Gossips says:

          As for Ksenia and Fedor, they can’t be chosen for this competition because its rules says that it should be the best pair in ranking. And for Russia it’s Tarasova/Morozov.

          • skating fan says:

            I suspected it, but I would like to see them at this competition, their FS deserves to be skated cleanly:) (no offence, I like Evgenia & Vladimir, and I agree that they are the best Russian pair at the moment and are great athletes, but I prefer Ksenia & Fedor) However, maybe it would be better for them to have more time to work on twist and throws? They need to do these elements cleanly to be competitive. The same about Alexa & Chris. It’s sad to watch athletes struggling so much this season, when last season for both Ksenia & Fedor and Alexa & Chris was so good.

            • FS Gossips says:

              I guess it’s for the best, both Ksenia/Fedor, Alexa/Chris need more time to prepare for the next season. It’s better to concentrate on this. I also heared that prize money is pretty solid at this event, so I hope Evgenia and Vladimir can spent a litle bit more on their programs and costumes for the next season. They really need it.

              • Mad for Skating says:

                Agree! I think Ksenia/Fedor need this time for their twist. The catch is still really bad and they have only 10 months before the Olympics.

                Alexa and Chris are awesome but they probably need the time off for personal reasons. Chris’s father just passed away.

                Evgenia and Vladimir with a proper choreographer and good costumes would be unstoppable.

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