The ladies field in Cup of China is full of implications for the Grand Prix Final, as five ladies competing have already medalled on the Grand Prix this season.
Ashley Wagner comes in as the only skater to have won their first event, starting her season off with gold at Skate America. Ashley can lock up a spot at the GPF for the fifth season in a row with a podium finish here in Beijing. What Wagner will be looking for here is a solid set of skates that will prove she’s capable of consistency. If she stays on her feet, she should get the PCS to land on top of the podium this week.
The battle for silver is going to be a good one to watch between Elena Radionova and Kaetlyn Osmund. Each has already won a silver medal at their home event and the difference between a first/second place finish or a third place finish here very well could be the difference between a guaranteed spot at the Final and being caught in a tiebreak situation.
These two are fairly evenly matched in overall PCS marks to me, and their base values are nearly identical. Overall, Osmund has much better flowing and powerful jumps, but if I had to pick one of the two as the more consistent performer, I’m gonna give it to Elena. I think Radionova will eek out the silver medal and place at the FInal. Osmund will not get the PCS she did at home and settle for bronze, where she’ll have to wait and see about the Final.
Mai Mihara of Japan and Courtney Hicks of the U.S. each have a bronze medal from the Grand Prix, and former World Champ Elizaveta Tuktamysheva is looking improved from last season’s disasters. They are the ones to keep an eye on as potential podium spoilers.
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