Savchenko, Szolkowy shine in Quebec City
Germans Aliona Savchenko / Robin Szolkwoy seized the Pairs gold at the Grand Prix Final in Quebec City, edging out Russians Tatiana Volosozhar / Maxim Trankov by just 0.18 points. Russia’s Yuko Kavaguti / Alexander Smirnov moved up from fourth to claim the bronze medal.
Savchenko / Szolkowy delivered a strong perfomance to “Pina” that featured a throw triple flip, triple toe – triple toe combination, triple twist and difficult lifts and spins. They earned a season’s best with 142.44 points for the free skating and overtook Volosozhar / Trankov with a total score of 212.26 points. “My legs were heavy today, it was hard. It was very close, but this gives us motivation to work even harder. It is exciting if the competition is so close.” Aliona Savchenko said.
Overnight leaders Volosozhar / Trankov hit a triple twist, triple Salchow, triple toe – double toe and three level four lifts in their dramatic program to “Black Swan”. The Russians improved their seasons best by almost ten points with 140.51 and totaled 212.08 points. “We are happy that we were able to skate well even though we skated last again. We are getting used to it. It was very close but that makes it interesting. We still have to work on the second half of our program. Maxim had an injury and we couldn’t prepare a 100 percent.” Tatiana Volosozhar commented.
Kavaguti / Smirnov opened their program to “Clair de Lune” with a solid triple toe and followed up with a triple twist and throw triple Salchow but she singled the second jump in the double Axel – double Axel sequence. The couple from St. Petersburg picked up 126.40 points and collected 187.77 points overall. “We are pleased with our skate today, there were only little errors. Today I didn’t skate for a placement; I only skated for Yuko, for myself and for the audience. Judging by the applause we got I think we were able to transmit the emotion of our program pretty well.” Alexander Smirnov noted.
Grand Prix Final 2011 – All medalists
1. Aliona Savchenko / Robin Szolkowy (GER) 212.26
2. Tatiana Volosozhar / Maxim Trankov (RUS) 212.08
3. Yuko Kavaguti / Alexander Smirnov (RUS) 187.77
1. Carolina Kostner (ITA) 187.48
2. Akiko Suzuki (JPN) 179.76
3. Alena Leonova (RUS) 176.42
1. Patrick Chan (CAN) 260.30
2. Daisuke Takahashi (JPN) 249.12
3. Javier Fernandez (ESP) 247.55
1. Meryl Davis / Charlie White (USA) 188.55
2. Tessa Virtue / Scott Moir (CAN) 183.34
3. Nathalie Pechalat / Fabian Bourzat (FRA) 169.69