Traditionally, Japan is boasting a deep field in Single Skating, just think of superstars like two-time Olympic Champion Yuzuru Hanyu or of Olympic silver medalist Mao Asada. However, Pair Skating and Ice Dance are growing as well in the country of the rising sun and Japan has a realistic medal chance in the team event at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games. Japanese skating stars are going where no man has gone before.
With the Russian and Japanese Championships, two spectacular Figure Skating events highlighted the Christmas holidays. Japan announced their teams for the Olympic Winter Games and for the ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships (Tallinn, January 18-23, 2022) while Russia named their Skaters for the ISU European Championships (Tallinn, January 10-16, 2022).
Gabriella Papadakis/Guillaume Cizeron of France needed only one season to soar to the top of the Ice Dance World back in 2014/15. They are France’s hope for an Olympic gold medal in Figure Skating in Beijing and want to crown their career with this medal that eluded them in 2018 when they came a close second to Tessa Virtue/ Scott Moir (CAN). France will also be represented in the Men’s event with two entries, most likely Kevin Aymoz and Adam Siao Him Fa.
This past week, the National Championships continued in several countries in Europe and more skaters confirmed their spots for the upcoming ISU European Championships and in some cases for the Olympic Games. Most ISU members decide their teams for the ISU Championships and the Olympic Winter Games based on the results from the National Championships and also international events such as the ISU Grand Prix and ISU Challenger Series.
Following the ISU announcement on December 2, 2021 regarding the cancellation of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final in Osaka (JPN), the ISU evaluated a possible postponement to hold the Event at the end of the season and reached out to the six ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Group to find out if they could host the Event. Unfortunately, despite all efforts made by the ISU and the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Group, it was impossible to find a solution to maintain this Event.
Russia’s rising star Kamila Valieva reigned supreme in the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series this season. Not only did the 15-year-old prodigy win her two events Skate Canada International and Rostelecom Cup in her international senior-level debut season, but she kept pushing the highest score since the Challenger event Finlandia Trophy. The 2020 ISU World Junior Champion now holds the highest score for the Women’s Short Program (87.42 points), the Free Skating (185.29 points) and total score (272.71 points) – all set at Rostelecom Cup.
Most ISU Members decide their teams for the ISU Championships and the Olympic Winter Games based on the results from the National Championships and also international events such as the ISU Grand Prix and Challenger Series. While in some countries the candidates for the Olympic team have been announced already or are obvious, in others Nationals are decisive of who is going to represent their country on the Olympic stage at the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games in February.
The list of entries / participating Figure Skating Team events has been pubilshed today
Shoma Uno of Japan will be only 24 on December 17, but he has competed in five ISU World Championships as well as in the 2018 Olympic Winter Games, where he won the silver medal. He collected silver as well at the ISU World Championships 2017 and 2018 plus in the ISU Grand Prix Final the same years.
The ISU was informed by the Japan Skating Federation (JSF) that the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final 2021, scheduled to take place from December 9 – 12, 2021 in Osaka (JPN) cannot be held as planned.
Kamila Valieva of Russia crushed the competition at the ISU Grand Prix Rostelecom Cup Sochi on Saturday to win with 40 points to spare. She led the Russian women to another podium sweep with Elizaveta Tuktamysheva taking the silver medal and Maiia Khromykh the bronze.
ISU World Champions Anastasia Mishina/Aleksandr Galliamov struck gold in Sochi at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Rostelecom Cup Saturday and led the Russian Pairs to a podium sweep with Daria Pavliuchenko/Denis Khodykin taking the silver and Iasmina Kadyrova/Ivan Balchenko earning the bronze medal.
ISU World Champions Victoria Sinitsina/Nikita Katsalapov of Russia danced to gold in Sochi and right into the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final at Rostelecom Cup on Saturday. Italy’s Charlene Guignard/Marco Fabbri earned the silver medal and assured their place in the Final as well. The bronze went to Laurence Fournier Beaudry/Nikolaj Sorensen of Canada.