Thursday, July 22

What do you think of Javier Raya's senior prospects? I always find it exciting when non-powerhouse nations produce promising young skaters.

He obviously needs more difficult jumping content before he's ever going to make the free skate at Worlds, but I was very pleasantly surprised with his short program at Junior Worlds. He has a strong foundation to his skating and the basics look very secure. I think Javier Fernandez will manage to get into the top 10 at Worlds in a year or two (earning a second spot for Spain), so hopefully Raya is able to improve by then. However, he's already 19 and aged out of juniors so I don't know how much further he will be able to go with the jumps. The flip and Lutz don't seem consistent based on his protocols, and he doesn't have a triple Axel. But then again, maybe he's working really hard this summer and will surprise me again come the start of the season.

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