Donnerstag, 29. September 2016

|Sportsgeist| 2016 Nebelhorn Trophy - Exhibition

The gala of this year's Nebelhorn Trophy wasn't a total highlight (not like the one with Tomas Verner as special guest) but also not one of the worst ever (like the one were all the ice dancers did ballads). I would describe it as "solid".

The Fritz Geiger Memorial Trophy wasn't part of the exhibition, this year. It was presented right after the pairs and ladies medal ceremony, instead.

Ruben Blommaert and his new little partner - sooo cute.

Yura Min & Alexander Gamelin

Julian Zhi-Lee Yee - this was a funny program.

Gabrielle Daleman

Kavita Lorenz & Joti Polizoakis

Mari Vartmann & Ruben Blommaert

So Youn Park - so photogenic!

So Youn Park

Elizaveta Tuktamisheva - she lent this costume from Gabrielle Daleman, I think.

Paul Fentz - the first part of his program looked like a classical short program and the second part was "Let's Twist Again" - which made me think of Viktor Petrenko and one of my all-time favourite programs.

Ashley Cain & Timothy Leduc - I looove them <3

Madison Chock & Evan Bates had a special program to "Sunscreen" which didn't work that well here in Germany as you needed to understand what was said in the text.

Liubov Ilyushechkina & Dylan Moscovitch - she's great and he presents her so well.

Luca Lanotte waiting for his partner.

Anna Cappellini looking quite different.

Alexander Petrov with his "Petrenko sleeves".

Aliona Savchenko & Bruno Massot's exhibition was a total highlight. We laughed so hard about his costume. At the beginning, they were pretending to not being able to skate. This was sooo cool. 

I hope you enjoyed my reviews and photos from Nebelhorn Trophy. I loved putting these posts together.

Mittwoch, 28. September 2016

|Sportsgeist| 2016 Nebelhorn Trophy - pairs free skating

The pairs free skating wasn't an event with many flawless performances but I still enjoyed it a lot. Probably because I'll always be a pairs skating fan but also because most programs had some interesting choreography.

The two Suisse pairs were better than I had expected them to be, especially Chtchetinina & Scherer whose biggest weakness was the lifts. Must be a technical problem because Ioulia is really tiny.

Minerva Fabienne Hase from Germany

Minerva Fabienne Hase & Nolan Seegert from Germany

Hase & Seegert from Germany had the best skate I've ever seen them deliver. It would be great if they could go on in this direction and stop stagnating.

Ashley Cain & Timothy Leduc from the US

Ashley Cain & Timothy Leduc from the US

Timothy Leduc from the US

My personal highlight (probably of complete Nebelhorn Trophy 2016) were Ashley Cain & Timothy Leduc. They had such a fabulous skate and looked genuinely happy at the end. One can't mention often enough that they've only started skating together this past July. Their music for the long program was "The Prayer" which is one of the really old skating hits. But one can't deny: they totally rock drama.

Erika Smith from the US

Erika Smith & AJ Reiss from the US

Erika Smith & AJ Reiss had some kind of melt-down in the long program and were overtaken by their teammates Cain & Leduc.

Mari Vartmann & Ruben Blommaert from Germany had one of their typical long programs: the beginning looked promising but then it all went downhill.

Liubov Ilyushechkina & Dylan Moscovitch from Canada

Liubov Ilyushechkina & Dylan Moscovitch from Canada

Liubov Ilyushechkina & Dylan Moscovitch were not flawless but had, yet, a solid skate. I like them even though he is not the most elegant male pairs skater. I especially like how happy she looks.

Aliona Savchenko & Bruno Massot from Germany

Aliona Savchenko & Bruno Massot from Germany

Aliona Savchenko & Bruno Massot from Germany

Aliona Savchenko & Bruno Massot have a romantic new long program and generally look much more like a real pair than last year. They had some problems with the elements in the long program but I guess they will get this under control.

Podium with kids in "Dirndl" and "Lederhosen"

Aliona Savchenko during the medal ceremony

Ilyushechkina & Moscovitch during the medal ceremony

Serafima Sakhanovich during the ladies free skating

Dienstag, 27. September 2016

|Sportsgeist| 2016 Nebelhorn Trophy - ladies free skating

In case anyone is wondering why I don't have photos from the ladies short program: we went hiking on Friday and watched neither the ladies short program nor the free dance.

Jeromie Repond from Switzerland

Karoliina Luhtonen from Finland

Brooklee Han from Australia

It was a bit of a negative surprise to see Brooklee Han in the first group. She has already competed at Nebelhorn numerous times and usually she's been in the top or second group after the short program. Looks like she isn't in shape, yet, because her jumps were also not there in the long program.

Loena Hendrickx from Belgium

Lorena Hendrickx is the sister of Jorik Hendrickx who competed in the men competition. She's a very fierce skater with a special facial expression.

Lutricia Bock from Germany

Lutricia Bock fought with her jumps but was a nice change in this field. First of all, she didn't skate to a ballad or a classical piece of music but to "The Artist" and secondly, she did have a pretty and colorful dress which made her stand out.

Serafima Shakhanovic has a dark, expressive long program to "The Man With the Harmonica" which I really liked choreography-wise. Unfortunately, she seems to be one of those former junior skaters who have trouble transferring to the senior level. I hope she'll get her jumps back because there is something special about her skating.

So Youn Park from Korea

I really liked So Youn Park from Korea. She has such a smooth skating style.

Gabrielle Daleman from Canada

Gabrielle Daleman is another energetic, expressive skater.

Mai Mihara from Japan

Mai Mihara is very young and still looks juniorish but she did have the skate of her life here at Nebelhorn. Her jumps are very powerful and high which sets her apart from other tiny skaters. She was so cute in the kiss & cry when she couldn't believe how good her marks were.

Elizaveta Tuktamysheva from Russia

Elizateva Tuktamysheva doesn't seem to be in shape, yet. Her skating looked kind of heavy and she struggled with some of her jumps. Not like 2014/15 where she rocked Nebelhorn Trophy.


Montag, 26. September 2016

|Sportsgeist| 2016 Nebelhorn Trophy - men short program and free skating

I will do a combined post for the men short program and free skating because they are just not photogenic at all. Always the same starting pose (meaning just standing there, preferably with the arms hanging down randomly) and always the same boring, black costumes.

At least, their is now the possibility to choose music with lyrics which has improved the diversity in men skating (unlike the ladies where they have only added ballads to their usual classical music repertoire). It's no longer only bombastic movie soundtracks with a bit of classical music added to the mix but also "Wonderwall" or "Another Brick in the Wall".

Artur Dmitriev jr. - free skating

Germany sent Franz Streubel and Paul Fentz to Nebelhorn Trophy. While watching them during the short program, I came to the conclusion that not much has changed in German men's skating since the 90's: already back then the German men were struggling with the 3 axel. Back then, it was Ronny Winkler and Mirko Eichhorn, nowadays it's Streubel and Fentz. They did not manage to land a clean 3 axel during the short program but were much more successful during the long program. Franz Streubel has a nice long program to music by "Queen" and Paul Fentz has two good programs to the aforementioned songs "Wonderwall" and "Another Brick in the Wall".

Jorik Hendrickx - short program

I've already liked Jorik Hendrickx at last year's Nebelhorn Trophy. Unfortunately, he had a very weak skate during the free skating (like all of the other men in 2015 - the long program was a total disaster) back then. This year, both programs were not flawless but solid.

Julian Zhi Jie Yee from Malaysia already left a positive impression at last year's Nebelhorn Trophy. He is an expressive skater, always entertaining to watch. His training companion Meng Ju Lee from Taipeh looks like the average stone-faced Asian warrior but actually is kind of outgoing. Unfortunately, his jumping technique is very wild and he had a lot of problems with his jumps.

Timothy Dolensky - free skating

Liam Firus from Canada and Grant Hochstein from the US didn't really leave an impression because their programs were so generic. I liked Timothy Dolensky better. He looks very smooth and has some interesting entries into his spins (like entering from a position deep down in his knee).

Alexander Petrov - short program

Alexander Petrov - free skating

Alexander Petrov from Russia is only 17 years old and I guess Nebelhorn Trophy was one of his first ever senior competitions. He rocked the short program with a flawless skate. I just wish he would have chosen a slightly less bombastic music because it kind of overwhelms him. His long program to music by Frank Sinatra was a better choice. I must say I fell a bit in love with Alexander Petrov here at Nebelhorn. Look-wise, he reminds me of Alexander Fadeev and his clean, very classical skating style is totally 80's/early 90's Soviet Union. Even his sleeves during the exhibition screamed "Viktor Petrenko".

|Sportsgeist| 2016 Nebelhorn Tropy - pairs short program

After all those years, pairs are still my favorite discipline and I was really looking forward to this part of the competition.

Ioulia Chtchetinina

First to skate were Ioulia Chtchetinina (what a name...) & Noah Scherer from Switzerland. Their music was really strange and they had an overall weak skate.

Minerva Fabienne Hase & Nolan Seegert

It was not the first time I've seen Hase & Seegert but, unfortunately, it doesn't look like they are improving. At least in this short program.

Ashley Cain & Timothy Leduc

Timothy Leduc

Ashley Cain & Timothy Leduc

Ashley Cain & Timothy Leduc were the nicest surprise of the whole event. They've only started skating together in July but they already look fabulous together. She's very outgoing, with a typical American smile and he just matches her perfectly. One can only hope they will stick together longer than your average US pair... They could have a bright future together.

Aliona Savchenko & Bruno Massot

Bruno Massot

Aliona Savchenko

Aliona Savchenko

I loved Aliona Savchenko & Bruno Massot's new short program. It's very entertaining and they are showing off some great new tricks. Their 3 twist is so much higher than Savchenko & Szolkowy's. She doubled her SBS 3 sal but landed her most prestigious element, the thrown 3 axel. I've got the impression that this element is very important for her, at least according to her biography which I recently read. Bruno Massot is not the most elegant skater and doesn't have the best posture but still, they manage to look very good together and Aliona definitely seems to be so much happier.

Nicolas Roulet

Alexandra Herbrikova & Nicolas Roulet from Switzerland had a cute short program to music from "Grease". Unfortunately, their elements did not work out. I loved his skates and kept on wondering if those tattoos he was showing off are real...

Liubov Ilyushechkina

Liubov Ilyushechkina & Dylan Moscovitch

I have a big soft spot for Liubov Ilyushechkina & Dylan Moscovitch (especially her). They are so fast! They have a very dramatic short program music.

Erika Smith & AJ Reiss

Erika Smith & AJ Reiss, the second American pairs team, had their own fan team with them (wearing caps with their names on them).

Mari Vartmann & Ruben Blommaert

Mari Vartmann & Ruben Blommaert's skated to music by Michael Jackson and their costume contained the one thing which seems to be mandatory for a Michael Jackson program: gloves. They had a solid performance and I like this program but fear it's too loud for the average (older) spectator in Oberstdorf ;-)