Okay- here I am with ladies picks! Better late than never, yes? Opinions (mine and others) were very mixed on this field, and I took my time to *really* think about this one... so here's a look at who we'll see and who I think will make it on the podium:
LADIES: Looking at the field here- let's be honest-it's a two horse race between Gracie Gold and Elizaveta Tuktamysheva. Both received silver medals in their first assignment and both could solidify a spot at the Final with a win here. The race for the bronze medal is actually harder to predict with several skaters who could grab it.
Elizaveta Tutkamysheva had a hell of year last year but so far this season, she's been slow to warm up to peak form. She started her season at Cup of Nice with a total score of 179.23 (poor for her), and had a bad short at Skate Canada. But, she had a *much* better free skate there and received 188.99 at that event. I saw some fire from her in that free program, and you know she has a chip on her shoulder after losing to Ashley Wagner. I think she comes into this event with something to prove. Similarly, after watching Ashley win Skate Canada, you know Gracie Gold wants to do the same here. What we saw from her at Skate America was much improved from last season- she skated two programs, back-to-back, that were strong and solid. She certainly has the potential to outscore Tuktamysheva if the World Champ skates with mistakes. Now, the real question is- would Gracie beat a clean ( or mostly clean) Tuktamysheva-Especially if we see a rotated triple axel from her?
In the race for bronze, we have Kanako Murakami (171.51 at Skate Canada), Julia Lipnitskya (170.63 from Skate America), and Gabrielle Daleman (170.33 at Skate Canada). Jumping inconsistencies is really what keeps all three of these skaters from the top, though they each have great skills- Gabby's power, Julia's spins and Kana's skating quality. If anyone is coming in on a high note, it would be Gabrielle Daleman, who had a fantastic free skate at her home event, though I thought Kana made good improvements at Skate Canada. If I'm going with my gut, I expect all three of them to skate and score similarly here to what they did at their previous events. Shoutout to one of my faves, Angela Wang, whose short program I love and who is coming off a personal best performance at the US Classic of 166.80. Rooting for her!
Gold- Elizaveta Tuktamysheva
Silver- Gracie Gold
Bronze- Kanako Murakami
About the Blog:
Reviews, predictions and opinions in the magical, sparkly and dramatic field of figure skating.