Saturday, January 14, 2012

European Championship: Ladies' Preview

In the ladies' field, Carolina Kostner is the favourite for gold. Three times European champion, Carolina started the season in the best way by making it to the podium each time she attended a competition (she won Cup of China and Grand Prix final). The italian skater has not a very high technical content because of an injury that forced her not to practice the most difficult jumps last season. Carolina might introduce some technical difficulties during European Championships. That could give her a higher technical score or could make pressure on her program, too.

Carolina Kostner gpf short program

Russia is sending three skaters to European Championships: Alena Leonova, Ksenia Makarova and Polina Korobeynikova. The first two can battle for medal.
Alena Leonova started her season brilliantly, by qualifying for Grand Prix final and winning the bronze there. She earned a third place at national championships too, because of the strenght of the younger Russian skaters, unable to compete to an international senior event yet.
It seemed like Ksenia Makarova had regained a sort of form after the disappointing beginning of season. The Russian athlete placed second at nationals' short program, but she did not repeat in the free where she under-rotated a lot of jumps, finishing fourth. Ksenia could do well at European Championships, especially in the short, but not easily in the free that had been criticized for structure and coreography.

Alena Leonova gpf free skate
Ksenia Makarova national championship free skate

Kiira Korpi (FIN), winner of the bronze medal at European Championships in 2011, is recovering from a september injury. Kiira is one of the best artistic European athletes (the choice of her free on “I've got rythm”, she really seems to come from the twenties), but she had always been inconsistent on her jumps.

Kiira Korpi national championships free skate

The biggest surprise can come from Elene Gedevanishvili from Georgia. Elene had not have her chance to prove herself on international field, but having changed her coach (now she is training with Brian Orser), it seems that she had found a new style, a new charactere that could help her in Europe.

Elene Gedevanishvili NHK free skate

Podium Picks:
Gold: Carolina Kostner
Silver: Alena Leonova
Bronze: Elene Gedevanishvili


  1. I wouldn't leave Polina K out of the medal hopes. She's going to have a tougher jump arsenal than the other ladies your mentioning. She likely won't get the PCS but I can imagine if she skates well here, it will be noticed and her PCS will improve by worlds.

  2. You are right, Polina is a beautiful skater with a lot of jumping talent. I did not mention her because I think she is really young and could feel more pressure going to an international stage. However, considering that european skaters are not really consistent, she could give herself a chance.