Sunday, November 22, 2009

some thoughts from Skate Canda

The Grand Prix of Figure Skating is winding up this weekend with Skate Canada. And what a semi-almost-fantastic event it was! Ok, that's not fair - I only watched the ladies and men's events. I'm sure the pairs was fantastic.

The pairs winner

Oh right - the winners of the pairs event, Savchenko and Szolkowy from Germany, skated in clown costumes complete with painted faces.

Sigh.... I'm not sure I can handle some of the costumes we're seeing this season. There's another couple from China (ice dancers this time) who are skating to music from Cats and seriously have TAILS on their costumes. Along with painted faces.

I only approve of tails if they are somehow used in lifts. .... Or spins. (I get dizzy with excitement just thinking about the possibilities)

Actually - the men's short programs got me all skate-happy so that's what I'm sharing and edu-mah-cating on today

First up, Daisuke Takahashi. He is from Japan and has, without a doubt, the funnest name in men's figure skating. Maybe the universe.

Daisuke's short program at Skate Canada

Say it with me... Die-sue-key Tah-kah-Haash-she. Sometimes I just say his name out loud for fun. Sometimes I tell the people at Starbucks that my name is Daisuke Takahashi just to see them struggle with trying to spell that out onto my latte cup.

And oh yea, he's a pretty awesome skater too. Not sure what's up with the super offensive, scratchy music (my ears don't want) but with jumps and footwork like that, he could skate to Barney's theme song and I'd probably still root for him. Oh forget it - he could totally suck and I'd still root for him because I just like his name so much!

Jeremy Abbott could be the surprise of the season. Last year, he burst onto the scene and won the Grand Prix Final - which, huge. And then he stormed nationals and won that title too. So the expectations were pretty high for him entering Worlds. (The competition order for the season is the Grand Prix events, the Grand Prix Final, Nationals, and then Worlds) He didn't necessarily bomb at worlds, but he had a really rough time considering how amazing he'd been all year. He probably just peaked a bit too early in his season.

He changed coaches over the summer (his old coach has about 67,322 elite level skaters and he felt like he wasn't getting enough attention - don't blame him) He won Skate Canada this weekend and seems to be getting it together after a rough first Grand Prix event. Soooo.... he seems to have some momentum. Just making the US men's Olympic team is going to be tough, but I would put a lot of money on him being in Vancouver - and having the skate of his life.

Jeremy's short program from Skate Canada

This might be one of my favorite short programs ever. And mom, you're going to LOVE this program ;)

Let's be clear - French men skaters are hilarious. Hiiii-larious. With the exception of Brian Joubert - he's a constantly malfunctioning robot. Very, very attractive, but a mechanical, one-trick pony, robot who, when he can't land his quad, is pretty much the worlds most boring skater.

But onto the hilarious and wonderfully entertaining French men - Alban Preaubert (yes, he's riding a horse) There's just something about this guy that I like so very, very much. He's not going to vying for the Olympic or World title anytime soon, but he's going to have a ton of fun trying to get there.

The Frenchies are performers. They understand that there's people in the stands watching them and they actually (gasp!) skate for them. It's such a contrast between insomnia-inducing Joubert, (who is a huge star in France for some strange reason - "France, making no sense since ... EVER"), and these other guys who just smoke him in every way. I can't wait for Joubert to retire so these other guys can get the much-deserved spotlight in France. Joubert - you're gorgeous, but it's time for you to become a businessman. Go sell ties. Or air conditioners.

Patrick Chan had a really terrible time at Skate Canada which makes my heart cry a bit. This guy is the most elegant skater out there right now. I could watch him skate forever. Chan is the skater that will cause me sleepless nights in Vancouver because I just want so badly for him to do well. I'm chalking up his Skate Canada performance as a total fluke - just shaking the nerves out before the big show.

Daisuke Takahashi!!! (just because)

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