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TripleLutz
December 25th, 1999, 09:34 AM
1. Irina Slutskaya Tech - 5.5-5.9 Pres - 5.8-5.9 Interesting, she had one fall on 3lutz, one small mistake on 3loop, but had marks no lower than 5.8, outside of one 5.5 2. Maria Butyrskaya Tech - 5.6-5.7 Pres - 5.8-5.9 Made many obvious errors, landing only 3 or 4 of her 7 planned triples 3. Viktoria Volchkova Tech - 5.4-5.7 Pres - 5.5-5.7 4. Julia Soldatova Tech - 5.4-5.6 Pres - 5.4-5.7 5. Irina Nikolayeva Tech - 5.2-5.6 Pres - 5.3-5.6 6. Elena Sokolova Tech - 5.3-5.5 Pres - 5.3-5.6 7. Daria Timoshenko Tech - 5.2-5.5 Pres - 5.3-5.6 -One really interesting note though, the TOP 13 ladies in Russia are all from Moscow, Number 14 is from Perm, and most of the rest are all from Moscow. -Really glad for Slutskaya =D, finally a big win for her. Seems like the accident affected Butyrskaya afterall. =( Too bad for Sokolova, how come she dropped to 6th, must of been a bad performance...I feel really sorry for her. It looks like Soldatova won't be headed anywhere either this year since she was pretty behind Volchkova. -Unofficially, the Russian team for Europeans and Worlds is: -Irina Slutskaya -Maria Butyrskaya -Viktoria Volchkova Substitutes: -Julia Soldatova -Irina Nikolayeva -Elena Sokolova

Karin
December 25th, 1999, 09:37 AM
Is this Irina's first Russian title??? I mean...Maria has won it for the longest time right??? Now...the world team...we'll be sure by GPF and Europeans???

Mousee17
December 25th, 1999, 09:50 AM
YAY for Irina! She's back!!

François
December 25th, 1999, 11:19 AM
i'm really happy for Irina with her comeback

TripleLutz
December 25th, 1999, 02:28 PM
Irina in years past has never been higher than 2nd at Russian Nationals, but because of her outstanding International record was allowed to compete at the Worlds in 95, 96, 97, and 98. She was 4th at Russian Nationals in 1995, 1998, and 1999. She was 3rd in 1996 and 2nd in 1997. So it is her first Russian title.

sw10025a
December 25th, 1999, 04:11 PM
Good for Irina. This should give her a real psychological boost, as well as increased stature. Even with a fall on a 3 lutz, that's one more lutz attempted than Maria, and at least this time she actually went for it, and did the rotations, rather than popping it or backing off. But it really sounds as if the judges at Russian nationals held Maria up *a lot* (and screwed Volchkova in the process) -- I mean, I'm sorry for her that somebody blew up her car, and I'm certain that some of her mistakes may be attributed to delayed reaction, but can you imagine only landing 3 or 4 triples and still getting those marks and second place?! Its ridiculous. Given that the winner made two errors, and the second place finisher at least three to four, it would hardly have been the formidable competition that Maria prophesized for Michelle. Does anybody know how Volchkova performed? If she did a good job, she may have been screwed over in an attempt not to embarrass Maria too badly by putting her third. And the good thing is, Sokolova (whom I wish would get the message and fix the problems with her programs) and Soldatova (who just plain irritates me) are going to have to work darn hard and improve themselves if they want to make the world team next year. Barring a complete crash and burn by one of the other ladies at GP finals or Europeans, which is unlikely, the worlds team will be Slutskaya, Butyrskaya and Volchkova.

TripleLutz
December 25th, 1999, 07:05 PM
Irina Slutskaya 3lutz, 3salchow/2loop, 3lutz(fall), 3loop(hopping on end of landing), 3flip, 2axel, 3toe Maria Butyrskaya 3lutz(shaky), 3flip(fall), 3toe/half loop/3salchow, 3loop(fall), 3loop/2toe, 2toe, 2axel I have no idea how Volchkova did though...sorry =D

Buffy
December 26th, 1999, 06:15 AM
Yipeeeeee for Irina! It is a shame that no one had great performances, though. I would have loved for Irina to have beaten Maria when they both did well (not that the judges would've allowed for that!). It will be very interesting to see how the three of them do at world's.

lyraangelica
December 26th, 1999, 08:10 AM
I'm very happy for Irina. It's wonderful to see her smiling on the ice again!

sw10025a
December 26th, 1999, 11:37 AM
I disagree that the judges would not have placed a clean Irina over a clean Maria. I think it very well might be a very close, split vote on the ordinals, but those Russian judges aren't stupid. Maria is very old for a singles skaters, she hasn't made any significant improvements in the last two or three years, she hasn't added in any new elements, she's only got one triple lutz, whereas all of the top ladies in the world are at least attempting two, she's inconsistent, her practices at competitions have been inconsistent, she's barely won some of her competitions and some of those were gimme victories, and they're not dumb, she's got a relatively weak LP. Irina with her great speed, wonderful high jumps and spring, and improving artistry, not to mention a far more dynamic and riveting LP, is not only still improving in every sense, but is much more of a long term threat to Michelle than Maria. Same goes for Volchkova.

acre
December 26th, 1999, 11:47 AM
Actually, SW10025, Maria has added some new elements that I would consider improvements. The 3toe/half loop/3sal is new this year, and I *think* that the 3loop/2toe is also. IIRC, she didn't have any combinations in the past. Personally, I give her a lot of credit for still striving to improve, even after attaining her ultimate goal (World Champ), and at the age of 27. I know a lot of folks here don't like Maria, but I find her skating very graceful (except for the stiff landing she often has). Yes, I like Michelle best, but I also like Maria.

KristiDrop
December 26th, 1999, 12:42 PM
It sounds as if Yulia (or is it Julia?) may have landed five triples, while Viktoria V. only landed three. . . If this is true, it sounds as if the judges weren't playing Soldatova any favors. Maybe Yulia will make the kind of improvements that we saw in Irina S. these past two seasons if she's left off the World/European team.

Buffy
December 26th, 1999, 01:06 PM
Gee, it really seem like skating is so political in Russia. I guess it is political everywhere, but not like in Russia. If VV only landed 3 triples, I really doubt she should have been placed so high.

KristiDrop
December 26th, 1999, 01:19 PM
I don't know how accurate this report is, but this is what was posted at FSW: "3. Volchkova - skating in a lilac-purple dress started off fairly well (no falls-wise). Her elements: 1 Lutz, 2 Flip (I think), 3 Loop, 3 Sal, 1 Toe turnout, 3 Toe hand down, 3 Lutz, 3 Flip fallen, 2 Axel. I happen to like this girl since I saw her 2 summers ago because she seems somehow to be pure (cannot find a better word). Even though she passed many skaters who are considered to be better than her or more experienced she did not look all that crazy about this 3rd place victory. 4. Soldatova - maybe sitting a season at home will do her as much good as it did to Slutskaya. She could really use some work on her presentation and these flapping arms. She is a good jumper but not smooth at all. Her elements: 3 Sal turnout, 3 Lutz fall, 3 Flip, 3 Loop steps 2 Axel or Sal, 2 Axel (these jumps were pretty close to each other, so I may have messed them a bit up, sorry), 3 Lutz, 3 Toe. Actually she was pretty clean compared to the rest but the judges did not favour her."

TripleLutz
December 26th, 1999, 02:46 PM
How in heck did Volchkova win? 3 triples against Soldatova's 5? WHOA...but if you think about it...Volchkova has been doing so much better overall throughout the season, so I can't imagine why they would hold Soldatova up anyways.

Karin
December 26th, 1999, 02:52 PM
the whole competition is not just about how many jumps a skater does!!!...as has been seen all season long!!!...IMO VV has a very pleasant style...she's very lovely to watch!!!...and even so...her jumps are so huge and exciting!!!

TripleLutz
December 26th, 1999, 03:20 PM
But you know what? There is still an importance in technical merit in jumping in the full spectrum. If you think about it, style isn't everything either and Soldatova may be pretty darn awful in the presentation department, but she should have gotten much higher technical merit and which would have balanced for her presentation.

Karin
December 26th, 1999, 03:34 PM
Yes...of course!!!... there is still a technical importance...but that doesn't mean just jumps!!! I mean...isn't it 4 vs. 5 triples (with VV's 1/4 that is touch down) but if it's just a difference of 1 jump...shouldn't we also look at footwork...choreography... spirals... spins... blablabla??? From the judging...from the reports...VV got all 3rd place ordinals...Julia got 1 5th...FROM the reports!!!... I haven't seen the competition...so I can't really comment on who should have beaten who...but from the watching the GP series...VV's program is more complete IMO!!!

dreamr
December 26th, 1999, 07:40 PM
Wow, Maria landed a 3/half loop/3salchow? That is definitly great! Although isn't the 3lutz/2toe more difficult than the 3loop/2toe? Great for Irina!!!!! I think it is very interesting that even with a fall she had 5.8 and 5.9's across the board! Imagine what she would have got had she skated cleanly? :) VV is IMO a great skater who has better presentation than Soldatova. I am looking forward to seeing VV do better this year. She is in my top 3 favorite eligible skaters this year! I hope she can pull it off this year and land on the podium. :)

Jarrett
December 26th, 1999, 11:37 PM
I am glad Irina won far and square. She has been one of my favorites for a long time and this year she has gotten even better. Does anyone think she might upgrade her Triple Salchow/ Double Loop to Triple Salchow/Triple Loop. I know she did it at 1998 Worlds to win the silver. But what about this year? Bye Jarrett <a href=http://www.michellekwan.net>Michelle Kwan - Champion Forever</a>

Karin
December 27th, 1999, 10:30 AM
it's the spur of the moment kinda thing... don't ya guys notice that MK is one of the few skaters who doesn't tend to change her programs last minute???...except when she misses the 3/3/ and does the 3 at the end...but that's just plan B...not all of a sudden change!!! I guess one time I can think of is 97 US...when MK changed the 3/3 to 3/2...and then...!!!...!!!...!!!

sw10025
December 27th, 1999, 11:22 AM
Acre, I said *significant* technical improvements. I don't consider a 3toe/half loop/3 salchow a significant improvement, much less when most of the time she botches the last jump in the sequence either by popping or pitching forward if she actually does the 3 sal. And I haven't seen her do a 3loop/2 toe once so far this season (I don't know where the account above was from, but the jump that had been in that place was a 3salchow, not a 3loop), and given that she's been having trouble landing the 3 loop, I'm less than impressed. And she can try the 3/2/3 sequence and a 3 loop/2 toe combo all she wants, but I think what the judges are looking for from her in particular is a second lutz, necessitating a lutz/2toe combo for her first jumping pass. She's the only top lady who doesn't even attempt one (probably 'cause she has such a hard time landing the first one when her legs are fresh, much less when she's tired), excepting Malinina, who *does* get penalized for that omission, and she's not going to get away with it indefinitely, particularly if Slutskaya starts landing her second consistently.

MichelleKwanFanForever
December 27th, 1999, 01:46 PM
I'm really happy for Irina and Viktoria! It's seems they improved since last year! For example on Irina, last you she was 4th and didn't the World team, but this year she's first ranked lady is Russia!

rcl
December 28th, 1999, 08:20 AM
Don't get too comfy assuming that Soldatova won't be at Worlds. If she medals at Grand Prix Final and Volchkova doesn't, she very well may get sent to Worlds and VV will sit home. I think in 97 Slutskaya did poorly at Nationals but did well at Champion Series Final and got to go to Worlds as a result, but someone correct me if I'm wrong. Personally I think Julia should stay home and correct her sloppy, turned-over toe on her flip and lutz take offs, but don't count her out yet. And it's not at all surprising to me that Maria finished 2nd with a mediocre performance - this is Nationals not Worlds. Frequently the US Nationals are the same way - once you get past the top 1 or 2 skaters, the performances very often have falls and errors. Michelle has falls in 1997 and finished 2nd. NNN finished 2nd in 1999 with no lutz. I think Maria should be commended for competing at all and doing as well as she did. I would've pulled out for fear of getting attacked or something.

sw10025
December 28th, 1999, 10:44 AM
RCL, I'm going to have to disagree with you, and say that I think there is very little chance of Soldatova making the world team. For one thing, she was NOT named to the Europeans team, and that's a really good indication of what the Russian federation is thinking in terms of the worlds team. That gives Viktoria one more chance to have a couple of good performances in an important event. Even if she does only a mediocre job, she still gets more experience, the judges get one more look at her programs, and she still looks better than the girl who sat at home. Second, Russian nationals included, even with a disappointing performance, Viktoria has been skating much more consistently than Julia. Her jumps are not only bigger, more impressive, and absolutely more consistent, she's got greater speed and flow, and a far less irritating and saccharine program. Her overall package in both the SP and LP is better. Third, if the Russian federation sent Julia to worlds, it would hardly be sending her the message that she needs to do a lot of work to improve her consistency and presentation, which she does need to do, after all, in order to truly be competitive with the top ladies. She's currently the weakest link in the chain, excepting Sokolova, who doesn't stand a chance of going to worlds, barring mass food poisoning. Fourth, and I know some are going to argue I'm comparing apples and oranges on this point, but if you look at the marks each of the skaters has been pulling in competitions thus far this season, its obvious the judges are giving Volchkova the higher base marks, even with the mistakes. What's more, I don't think Julia has ever stolen ordinals from Maria, much less Michelle, and Viktoria's performances have been strong enough one SP and a couple of LP ordinals from the reigning world champion. The Russian federation is not stupid. The reigning world champion is hardly unbeatable, she's always had problems with nerves and technical inconsistency, she's undoubtedly distracted by unfortunate recent events, she's got additional pressure and expectations this year, a technically less demanding and weakly choreographed LP, and she's vulnerable. They're not going to send anyone but their three best ladies skaters, regardless if one of them bombs at the GP final and an alternate does well. It would take a major longterm meltdown or an injury to get Soldatova on the world team.

rcl
December 28th, 1999, 12:15 PM
The Russian Fed. is probably just mad at Soldatova for dyeing her hair so they'll keep her jn Russia until she fixes it and gets a new costume, and maybe a new program too.

acre
December 28th, 1999, 02:41 PM
Ah well, SW10025A, I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree. What I think is significant improvement, you don't. It is certainly true that Maria doesn't have the strongest tech repertoire (only 1 lutz, no lutz combo), but I think adding new combos is "significant". Hey, variety is the spice of life, right? If all the women skate clean at any given comp,clearly Michelle is the best, but to me Maria is next. And, I still give her props for striving to improve at all (significantly or not!) at her age, and after achieving her main goal.

sw10025
December 29th, 1999, 07:33 AM
Acre, while adding a new jump combo is good, my point is that a 3toe/half loop/3 salchow isn't going to make up for the lack of a second lutz or a lutz combo. I might consider it a significant technical upgrade if she actually were attempting and completing all of the necessary rotations and landing the 3salchow correctly without that horrible pitch forward. I might also consider it a technical upgrade if her landings on her lutz, flip and loop weren't becoming so problematic and inconsistent at the same time. I give Maria credit for still skating as an eligible skater, in the most physically demanding skating venue (eligibles), at a relatively advanced age and where every year it probably becomes harder and harder. But, on the other hand, its hardly surprising, given that its quite possible that Maria wouldn't be making nearly as much money as a pro skater as she is as an eligible one. She herself said in an interview after winning the world title that she was disappointed by the lack of offers she received post-victory. It may not be courage so much as financial common sense. RCL, you're absolutely right, and I'm absolutely wrong. It's all about a bad dye job. :-)

susan ba
December 29th, 1999, 08:28 AM
i've been out of the country for two weeks so: SOMEBODY BLEW UP MARIA'S CAR?!?!?!? PLEASE TELL! i haven't watched 97 nat's in a long time...but i don't think MK changed the 3t/3t to a 3t/2t... i think she even landed the second 3t and THEN fell... please correct me if i'm wrong

sw10025
December 29th, 1999, 09:35 AM
Susan, you're mistaken (sorry) about Michelle's 97 nationals LP performance (Taj Mahal). Michelle did her 3lutz/2toe fine, then attempted what was supposed to be a 3toe/3toe. She did the first jump fine, then her pick on the second jump was odd, she only doubled it and fell. She then became completely panicked and proceeded to have the most gut wrenchingly painful to watch program I have ever seen. That's what started the dark days of her self doubt period. I never watch it -- its too hard to watch her be so upset and in pain. As for Maria's car, here's all I've been able to find out. It was a brand new BMW she had parked out on the street outside her Moscow apartment. She was just minutes from leaving to go for the Russian national SP competition, when witnesses saw two men running away from her car. It exploded several minutes later. Maria was nowhere near the car and was not hurt. I haven't been able to find any further information. Maria had refused to comment to the press re the explosion, but I did find an article saying that there had been several recent attacks on prominent Russian athletes in various different disciplines, so this may be part of that particular crime wave.

Karin
December 29th, 1999, 09:36 AM
no no... MK scheduled a 3/3toe...but then changed it to a 3/2toe last minute...and then I think it was because of that sudden change that she fell...which made her scared...carrying on...to the 97 worlds... BUT that's all over now!!!...MK is so secure!!! Also...MB's car...go to skating chat...

skatingfan3
January 5th, 2000, 10:38 AM
sw10025, I believed Maria did her 3loop-2toe combo in Nations Cup and last year's Worlds. About the Russian Nationals, Maria may lost her title but she accomplished another goal, doing a triple-triple in competition.

KwanBoy23
January 12th, 2000, 02:19 PM
I totaly agree. Being 27 years old and for the first year attempting a triple/half loop/triple combination in your LP is a HUGE accomplishment. Landing it cleanly for the first time at the national championships is another added bonus. Please, give credit where credit is due. Most women skaters don't even atempt a triple/triple, and most of them who do only land them 50% of the time. For Maria to try it at her age and stage in her career is major. As for the second triple lutz, it does help but isn't necessary. If you land 7 triples with one lutz and a triple/triple it's just as good as 7 triples with two lutz's and no triple/triple. And it's always better than 6 triples. (If all the landings are faily clean)