Vancouver / Canada

The figure skating competition at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games continued in Vancouver, Canada, on Sunday with the Original Dance. 11, 583 spectators followed the competition at the Pacific Coliseum.

Virtue/Moir (CAN) take the lead in the Original Dance

Tessa Virtue/Scott Moir of Canada danced to the lead in what was an exciting Original Dance competition on Sunday. Meryl Davis/Charlie White (USA) moved up from third to second place while Russia’s Oksana Domnina/ Maxim Shabalin, who led after the Compulsory Dance, dropped to third before the final Free Dance.

Virtue/Moir showed a passionate Spanish Flamenco that had the crowd on its feet as soon as it ended. The reigning World bronze medalists looked smooth and confident in every step and move. They earned a level four for the lifts and the twizzles, while the two step sequences garnered a level three. Virtue/Moir picked up a seasons best of 68.41 points (32.90 element score/35.51 program component score) for their Original Dance which added up to a total of 111.15 points. “It felt amazing. We just stayed in the moment every step. We were actually quite relaxed. It wasn’t until we were sitting there (after the program) that I realized  what had happened”, Virtue said. “Right about now, we have to forget about what we’ve done and focus on the Free Dance. We’re going to skate for our fans and our country”, Moir added.

Davis/White sparkled in their Bollywood “Indian Dance” that was highlighted by fast twizzles and precise footwork. The Technical Panel awarded them a level four for three out of the four elements – the lift, the twizzles and the circular step sequence. The side by side footwork was a level three. The Grand Prix final Champions scored a seasons best of 67.08 points (32.60/34.48) and moved up from third to second with 108.55 points overall. “It was an emotionally charged program. We gave everything we had in that program. This definitely gives us momentum to slide right into the Free Dance. We have confidence”, White commented. “When you are able to skate your best, it’s definitely more fun.”

World Champions Domnina/Shabalin had chosen an unusual “Aboriginal Dance” and gave a solid performance, but seemed tentative in places. The European Champions had a level four for the curve lift and the twizzles, while the two step sequences were graded a level three. The couple earned 62.84 points (29.80/33.04), a seasons best, but they slipped to third place with 106.60 points overall. “We did well. We did all our elements clean and we’re happier with the performance than at the European Championships”, Shabalin told the press.

2006 Olympic silver medalists Tanith Belbin/Benjamin Agosto (USA), who skated last out of the 23 couples, turned in a romantic “Moldovian Dance” and remained in fourth place with 103.33 points. Federica Faiella/Massimo Scali (ITA) produced lively Tarantella to finish fifth at 100.06 points. Isabelle Delobel/Olivier Schoenfelder (FRA) gave an entertaining performance of their French Can-Can, but their step sequences and twizzles were graded a level two. The 2008 World Champions remained in sixth place with 96.67 points.

The figure skating competition at the Vancouver 2010 Olympic Winter Games continues Monday with the Free Dance.