The ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2012 continued in Nice, France, Friday with the Men's Short Program and the Pairs Free Skating.
Patrick Chan (CAN) skates to lead in Men's Short Program
Canada's Patrick Chan skated to the lead in the Men's Short Program. Michal Brezina of the Czech Republic finished second ahead of Daisuke Takahashi of Japan.
Performing to Take Five, Chan hit a triple Axel, triple Lutz-triple toeloop combination and two level-four spins, but he stepped out of the quadruple toeloop and was off balance in his footwork. The defending World Champion posted a new seasons best score with 89.41 points. It was a little shaky. I had a little mistake on my quad, so I had to do the combination later on, but this is a thing I practice every day. Then in the step sequence it was very good that I was strong enough to keep it all together and regain my balance. Overall I am very happy with the outcome, the 21-year-old Four Continents Champion said.
Brezina gave himself a nice 22nd birthday present by putting out a strong Short Program that featured a triple Axel, triple flip-triple toe and a quadruple Salchow. The Czech skater picked up a level four for the three spins and the straight line step sequence in his Kodo Drums routine to achieve a new seasons best of 87.67 points. It is for the first time that I skated the program clean with the quad (Salchow) in it, and I am happy that I did it at Worlds. I got a nice shiny medal and I think I couldn't have gotten any better present for my birthday, Brezina noted.
Takahashi went for quadruple-triple toe in his performance to In the Garden of the Souls but stumbled on the second jump that was downgraded. The 2010 World Champion recovered to land a triple Axel and a triple Lutz. Takahashi scored 85.72 points. I feel good about my quad toe and then calculated if I should add the triple toe after this. It could be better in order to get a higher score. That is what caused my mistake on the triple toe. I shouldn't have been thinking like that. I am not happy about it but my overall performance was quite good. I was satisfied to be able to include a quad toe in my short program, the reigning Olympic bronze medalist commented.
Brian Joubert (FRA) is still in the medal hunt in fourth place at 83.47 points. He completed a quadruple-triple toeloop combination, a triple Axel and triple flip. Javier Fernandez (ESP) came fifth with a clean performance that included a quadruple toeloop (81.87 points) and Florent Amodio (FRA) placed sixth (79.96 points).
Aliona Savchenko/Robin Szolkowy (GER) strike Pairs gold
Aliona Savchenko/Robin Szolkowy of Germany struck gold in the Pairs event, taking their fourth World title. Tatiana Volosozhar/Maxim Trankov of Russia surged from eighth to repeat as World silver medalists and Narumi Takahashi/Mervin Tran made history when they claimed Japan's first Pair Skating medal at the ISU World Figure Skating Championships, the bronze.
Savchenko/Szolkowy's Pina program was highlighted by a throw triple flip and Salchow, a triple twist and difficult lifts, but he singled the Axel and wobbled on the pair spin (level one). The Germans scored 132.86 points and clinched the title with 201.49 points, edging out Volosozhar/Trankov by 0.11 points. Everything was going well until I singled the Axel. Then my power was gone. I don't really know why but I forgot the spin, starting it on the wrong foot. It has never happened to me before but we just tried to make the best out of it, Szolkowy said. We were obviously a little nervous to skate tonight, having already won three Worlds. But now we can be proud of having won our fourth title and look into the future, he continued.
Volosozhar/Trankov rebounded from their subpar Short Program with an excellent performance of their Black Swan. They hit a triple twist, a side by side triple toe-double toe combination, triple Salchow, throw triple loop and Salchow and picked up a level four for their lifts and spins. The European Champions posted a new seasons best with 140.90 points and racked up a total of 201.38 points. It feels special. We were eighth in the short program, we were so far behind. But everything can happen. The short program was horrible, completely disappointing, but we found motivation for the free skating, Trankov commented.
Takahashi/Tran skated last out of the 16 couples in the final and gave a solid performance to Concerto de Quebec and produced a triple twist, triple toe-double toe sequence, throw triple toe and six level-four elements.The two-time World Junior medalists scored 124.32 points, a new seasons best, and totaled 189.69 points. I love to collect medals. I was so happy to get a small medal, now I added a big one. It's amazing. We are so honored to be the first Japanese pair skaters to win a world medal. I cannot describe this feeling, Takahashi told the press.
Qing Pang/Jian Tong (CHN) slipped from second to fourth after he fell on the triple toe and she singled an Axel (186.05 points). Meagan Duhamel/Eric Radford came fifth with a solid performance (185.41 points) and Vera Bazarova/Yuri Larionov (RUS) were ranked sixth.
The ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2012 continue Saturday with the Men's and Ladies Free Skating.