Betina Popova: “If we kept in mind the absence of leading athletes, then a lot of people wouldn’t be considered World and European champions. All victories at the World Championships are deserved.”
Betina Popova summed up the results of the World Figure Skating Championship in ice dance, noting that the Russian pair Victoria Sinitsina / Nikita Katsalapov can take a break in their career.
Betina Popova: In dance, the result was the most predictable, without sensationalism. Everyone finished in those places where they were all season, give or take. According to the booked tickets, so to speak.
Could Sinitsina – Katsalapov compete on equal terms with the French if they had not been banned from the event? Papadakis – Sizeron is a completely different league, a completely different vision of figure skating. Unfortunately, no one can compete with them.
Speaking in more detail, this is a different level of musicality, a different level of placing the elements into the program, a different level of understanding of images and integrity of the program. No one can even stand next to them. But it’s good that we have tham – they are moving our sport forward.
Which of the current leaders, in your opinion, can be expected to end their careers?
Betina Popova: Most likely, many pairs will end their careers after this cycle. Vika and Nikita (Sinitsina – Katsalapov) can at least take a break, and then they may decide to return, but most likely they will do something else. The same Papadakis – Sizeron can leave, because they have already achieved their main goal. Hubbell – Donohue – for sure, Chock – Bates – too, they are quite adult skaters. Italians Guignard – Fabbri. Gilles and Poirier from Canada. You can see how many names there are. Perhaps someone will take a break to return later, as Tessa and Scott (Virtue – Moir) did. Papadakis – Sizeron also skipp the season to miss the sport and return.
I think that in the next cycle we will have a serious renewal of the line-up in ice dance.
Betina also shared her opinion about World Championships without Russian skaters.
Betina Popova: If we talk about the World Championships, very often those who competed at the Olympics do not come to the post-Olympic World Championships, this is a completely usual practice in the world of figure skating. I don’t think it’s worth devaluing these victories, it’s wrong – the competitions took place here and now, and in this fight those who won were the best.
There were a lot of competitions where our skaters performed, and there were no leading athletes. If we kept in mind the absence of leading athletes, then a lot of people wouldn’t be considered World and European champions. There are different circumstances – injuries, illnesses. Therefore, victories at the World Championships in all disciplines are deserved and, of course, there are no questions about them.
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