Golden Skate: 11/15/03

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Golden Skate: 11/15/03

Post by Admin on Wed Jun 04, 2008 12:08 am

2003 Trophée Lalique

Figure Skating Highlights

November 15 , 2003
Article © Golden Skate

The ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series continued with Trophée Lalique November 13- 15, 2003. The fourth of six qualifying events took place at the Palais Omnisport Paris-Bercy in Paris, France.

Sasha Cohen, the current US National bronze medalist, entered her third Grand Prix event in Paris, and won the gold with a total score of 197.19 points. Shizuka Arakawa of Japan won the silver medal (172.12 points) while Hungary's Julia Sebestyen, won the bronze (163.32 points).

Viktoria Volchkova of Russia was scheduled to compete, but withdrew for undisclosed reasons. This would not have been a scoring event for the 21-year-old from Moscow, who now sits in 14th place overall in the Grand Prix series after competing at Skate America and Cup of China.

Cohen skated with a focused precision to Lecuona's Malaguena, in the short program, landing a triple Lutz-double toeloop combination, a triple flip and a double Axel. Showing off her flexibility in her spiral sequence, the 19-year-old received special applause from the audience and earned a total segment score of 69.38 points.

"I felt good. It was strange with having half of the arena being empty. It felt a little bit like practice," Cohen said with a smile. "I really feel I'm learning how to compete well. I can count on myself, I'm dependable. I definitely try to go out and enjoy it and leave the nerves behind."

Arakwa, who was seventh to skate, performed to Legrand's The Umbrellas of Cherbourg. The current Four Continents silver medalist completed a triple Lutz-double-toeloop combination, a triple flip follwed by a nice flying camel spin (that ended in a donut position), and a good double Axel. Arakawa, who won silver at Skate Canada earlier this month, was awarded a total segment score of 62.34 points.

"I wanted to do the triple Lutz-triple toeloop combination, but my Lutz was too low, so I couldn't do it," Arakawa explained. "But I'm happy with my program, it was my first clean short of the season."

Despite being first on the ice for the ladies' short program, Sebestyen appeared calm. Skating to a waltz, the European bronze medalist opened with a triple flip, followed by a high triple Lutz-double toeloop, a solid double Axel and good spins. Sebestyen, who finished third at Skate Canada behind Arakawa, earned a total segment score of 58.44 points.

"I skated first not for the first time, so I didn't care about the starting number," Sebestyen commented. "I think my program was better than at Skate Canada. The program as a whole was good."

In her long program to Tchaikovski's Swan Lake, Cohen opened with a triple Lutz-double toeloop followed by a clean triple flip-double toeloop combination. The 19-year-old executed four more triples (slightly two-footing the landing on a flip), a double Axel (hand down), and delivered fast spins with interesting positions. She was awared total segment score of 197.19 points to win the long program.

"This was my third Grand Prix, and it's tough to maintain my skating throughout the four weeks of the Grand Prix season," said Cohen. "I was happy with my perfomance tonight and very happy with how the event turned out."

Arakawa had to overcome a shaky start in her Turandot program when she stepped out of her opening triple Lutz. Though the 21-year-old landed a clean triple Salchow, she stumbled after overrotating the second jump in her triple flip-double toeloop combination. She recovered to land a double Axel, a triple lutz-double toeloop combination, and a triple toeloop. The judges awarded her 109.78 points.

"I made some mistakes today," Arakawa told the press. "I rushed too much going into my jumps. Now I'm happy with my placement."

Sebestyen put out an elegant Tango for her long program that included good spins, a triple Salchow, a triple Lutz-double toeloop combination, and a triple loop. Her first major mistake happened in her triple toeloop-double toeloop combination (she overrotated the double toeloop). The 22-year-old then doubled a triple flip and two-footed her second triple Lutz, but finished with a good double Axel. She scored 104.88 points and remained in third place.

"I'm happy with my Free Program. That's the third good long program for me this year," the European bronze medalist said.

Beatrisa Liang from the US, finished fourth overall, jumping three spots from seventh to fourth after the long. Finland's Alisa Drei finished fifth, followed by Anne Sophie Calvez of France, who was sixth.

This was a final scoring event for Cohen, Arakawa, and Sebestyen, who earned 12 points, 9 points, and 7 points respectively.

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