Back for the final group, no glimpse of the warm-up as they highlight the dance of Navarro/Bommentre.
Back to the warm-up. Cappellini and LaNotte, Zaretski and Zaretski.. Belbin and Agosto talk about their seasons. Belbin says the rink is giving her deja-vu, starting to get nervous.
First to skate, the leaders.. Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir from Canada.. oh yeah, Olympic gold medalists, too. Agosto says he's a great performer, already in character.. looks at her the whole program.. Belbin mentions they have been close in the rankings all year with Meryl and Charlie.. but says they know they always have to step it up... intensity and passion is captivating.. with the flamenco, if you don't have it, it can fall flat... but they make it their own and it's improved so much throughout the year.. Agosto- perfect unison on the twizzles.. not as difficult as the entrance to that lift though, he says.. the lift is one of my personal highlights.. I love it. Belbin says they are very sharp on the side by side steps.. Agosto adds that they do them so well. Belbin notes Scott's intensity.. and says they just skated with the confidence of Olympic champions. Well done. Standing ovation by some in the crowd. Should be close between them and the Americans, as usual.
Score: 34.30/35.97 = 70.27 and 114.40 overall.. into first. Seasons best.
Emily Samuelson and Evan Bates from the USA.. in 10th.. Dixie Chicks.. Agosto says both have great personalities and it comes through in their skating and this program.. Circular dance step.. Belbin says nice speed.. team that is always so-well trained. Lift with changes of position by her throughout. They laugh at the choreography by Evan when he takes his hat off and signals to the judges for money. Agosto- nice job with twizzles, Belbin- they flowed right into the choreography, no break in the rhythm.. great presentation and energy in the footwork. Agosto- nice highs and lows with a shoot the duck in there.. Belbin- very well done, great energy, very playful. Agosto- didn't lose a beat at all, wonderful performance. She adds that they are leaving the American ice dancing world in good hands with this team. Agosto wants the changes in the lift to be a bit smoother, doesn't look as easy as Virtue and Moir... twizzles should get positive grades of execution.
Score: 26.50/26.29 = 52.79 and they drop to 8th place. 85.40 overall. Hmm. Belbin says it shows how much more they have to grow.
Jana Khoklova and Sergei Novitski from Russia, currently in 5th. Russian folk dance. Belbin says roller coaster years the last two years, good success a few seasons ago but then stumbled down the rankings. Belbin talks about Domnina/Shabalin retiring and making this team the top Russians... she says they are different than Russian teams of the past.. Agosto says extremely acrobatic and one of the teams influencing the change of ice dancing with the lifts, etc. Belbin says they need to bring up level of their skating to the level of their lifts... lost balance on his part during the twizzles.. he adds that she has no fear.. another mistake in circular footwork, she lost her balance says Belbin. Good energy in presentation, but need to work on edge quality, stay closer together in holding. Typical Russian PAIR team spin to end.. it was nice but sloppy, and they did have a few mistakes.
Score: 25.60/28.68 = 54.28.. four points below seasons best. 91.98.. 6th place for now. Belbin says North Americans show they are head and shoulders above the competition with two great skates.
Anna Cappellini and Luca LaNotte from Italy.. Nice welcome by the crowd. Italian folk dance. Agosto- another young team to watch. Belbin says they have great potential, even if she didn't like when she skated and people said that year after year.. Agosto says nice edge control with circular footwork, nice to see them skating with hips close together, judges will be looking for that.. Nice curve lift but nothing too special. The crowd is really getting into it. HE ALSO stepped out of the twizzle.. what is going on? Agosto says they lost their energy, too, in the first set and then tried to compensate in the second.. he says footwork is nice but wants to see it deeper. Still, a great response from the crowd. Belbin says even with the errors, they performed it well.. wishes there was more connection between the two of them. Agosto says likes that they weren't holding back, they went for it and put all their energy into it. Belbin said he probably did enough revolutions in the second twizzles to get the level, but obviously the grade of execution goes down.
Score: 24.80/26.60 = 51.40.. three points below their best. 85.45.. into 9th place.
Alexandra and Roman Zaretski from Israel.. currently 8th and a good chance to move up with all of the mistakes so far. Hava Nagilah.. Belbin- twizzles well done, not perfect synchronization in the second part but still held on.. team has made a lot of improvements, a lot to work on still, though. Agosto-- difficult to do lift on one foot. The program is moving a bit slow for me but the music is slow and will end up really fast paced.. as in right now. Straight line steps.. Belbin says they are really using the width, maybe too much. Nice unison says Ben, but with energy of music he wants to see the power higher. They look really happy with that. Maybe into 7th?
Score: 56.13 overall and 6th in the original dance, 7th overall as I predicted.
Lipinski, Weir, Belbin, Agosto all in the Universal Sports "loft" with Peter Carruthers. I need a break before the mens competition so no transcripts from their chat. Sorry!!
I will add that Johnny Weir says that Davis and Whites original dance is his favorite skating program in the last four years, in any discipline.
Free dance draw from the ISU.. Samuelson/Bates with a sucky draw, and Davis/White and Virtue/Moir go back to back.