Saturday, January 19, 2013

European Championships: Men preview

The European men event might seem quite unchallenging considering the absence of the Japanese and North Americans champions, but the nth return of Plushenko to the competitive circuit is going to make things a lot more interesting. The 32 years old Russian skater qualified for Europeans at last month's Nationals where he won as expected. Plushenko stated that probably this is going to be his last competition of the season, planning to withdraw from World Championships as he had done since 2005. Although his programs at Nationals were far from perfect (at least for his standards) he is on the right track for defending his title and getting his eighth gold in this competition.

Some challenge should come from Javier Fernandez who has the most risky programs of the bunch, planning to land three quads in his free skate. Javier should have been a favourite for last year's European Championships as well, but after a brilliant fall season, he wasn't able to repeat at Euros nor Worlds and had to give up any medal ambitions. He has achieved some good results this season so far, but did alternate good skates with struggling performances, so this is going to be a nerves test for him.

Former European champion Florent Amodio will look for a medal too. Florent has been unconsistant in the fall season, but he always gives his best from January on and could be a real contender here. His compatriot Brian Joubert, instead, is struggling year after year and, despite some random good results, he is far from competitiveness his as a world champion.

Tomas Verner and Michal Brezina could potentially be in the medal contention, but both have been struggling a lot during the last two seasons and hardly nail a clean performance.

Watch out the young Maxim Kovtun, winner of the junior grand prix final, who was chosen by the federation over Konstantin Menshov despite being fourth at Nationals.

Gold: Javier Fernandez (ESP)
Silver: Evgeni Plushenko (RUS)
Bronze: Florent Amodio (FRA)

See: Men short season best scores
        Men free season best scores

Javier Fernandez Javier Fernandez of Spain competes in the Men's Short Program during day one of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating NHK Trophy at Sekisui Heim Super Arena on November 23, 2012 in Rifu, Japan.


  1. Please Fernandez does a lot of mistakes, for win gold he needs to do everything perfect and he always does mistakes on the SP or the FP. Maybe Fernandez wins silver or bronze tho.
    Plushenko is going to win gold!

    1. I do admit that I am very bad with fantasy picks! Fernandez is the only one who can really challenge Plushenko and I agree that he is usually an inconsistant skater, but he was freaking good at gpf so I excpect it to be a great competition!

  2. I really wish that Fernandez would win the Europeans! I love his Chaplin FP.

  3. i will go to Zagreb to see Plushenko another time with Gold!!

  4. Evgeny Pliùshenko (30 years old, not 32) for GOLD and Javier Fernández... He has two beatiful, good and difficult programs. Programs for medals but He has to skate good. Javier is a good skater I think, but not good competitor yet. For a moment, is hard for him to confront the competition pressure. If He will get medal at this European Championship, He will get a great goal for him. I say that with all affection, I am Spaniard..., but, Evgeny for gold, always.

  5. Sorry, I forgot in previous comment. First of all, Javier gets an extraordinary achievements. In Spain there are not figure skating tradition. There are only four medium size ice rinks in Madrid region (only one in Madrid city, with more of tree millions of residents!!). And the ice rinks are open at weekend only. And here walked his first steps at figure skating. He is and hero!!

  6. Take it or leave it...Mr Pluchescho is a falling star and Mr fernández is the new figure skating rising star with Mr Hanyu...Past and future join together!!!