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Pamela Moberg

European Ice Skating Championships

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The European Skating Championships started this week in Zagreb, Croatia. (In Europe, countries change their names faster than one changes ones clothes, so FYI, Zagreb is in the former rep. of Yugoslavia).

Unfortunately the TV schedule is not easy to follow, but there have been some fine moments that I have been able to catch. Heavy Russian dominance as always - Plushenko has retired though, he is only doing gala shows these days.

The pairs event was won, deservedly so, by the German couple Aliona Sawchenko (although she is Russian, but has moved to Germany) and Robin Szolkowy.

Two Swedish guys have really improved enormously since I saw them last, Kristoffer Berntsson and Adrian Schultheiss. No medals, but they were in the top ten.

I will report from other events as well during the next few days.

The World Championship will take place around Easter in Gothenburg Sweden, I live just a few miles from there so I hope to attend. Any BalletAlerters coming for this? In that case you are most welcome, it would be so nice meeting you. :)

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Savchenko is from Ukraine. I only mention this because three of the most wonderful female pairs skaters of the last decade have come from Ukraine: Savchenko, Obertas, and Volosozhar. Volosozhar is my favorite female pairs skater. Obertas has so much talent, but hadn't competed well for several years and is off this year.

I've never seen Schultheiss, and I'm looking forward to seeing him in March, thanks to Kristoffer Berntsson's top 10 finish at Worlds last year.

I am going to be there for the whole competition, and I'd love to meet you while I'm there :dunno:

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I find figure skating pales in comparison to ballet. And most of the costumes are so tacky. I recently popped on the telly to see Sarah Brightman singing along with some skating thingy. It was embarrassing.

Why is Sarah so annoying?

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I don't know, but she is.

I generally avoid those singer/skater things on NBC, but the announcer said "Caryn Kadavy", so I stuck around. Even when the singer isn't as annoying as Ms. Brightman, the quick-cut and off-topic photography drives me bonkeroooos. :)

I've got my dvr cued up for the Nationals this weekend. :dunno:

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:dunno:

Why is Sarah [brightman] so annoying?

Because she still behaves like an ingenue, even though those days are long long long gone for her.

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Tonight it was the turn of the guys. Unfortunately it was the usual old guys, they did not show any newcomers at all. That, I think, is very interesting when they show some people real low on the list and you sit there and figure who will be a medallist in a few years time.

Some of the more notable results:-

1. Thomas Werner - Czech Rep.

2. Stephane Lambiel - Switzerland - liked his flamenco a lot!

4. Sergei Voronsov - Russia - a very stylish tango

6. Adrian Schultheiss - Sweden :blush: - hope I dont sound too patriotic, but he has improved immensely.

7. Kristoffer Berntsson - Sweden :dunno: Much more confident and assured this season.

Good for Sweden, two guys! And what new won confidence they both had, and attack, a new "here am I" attitude.

Tomorrow there will be ladies, one Swedish girl I think. Here I am more doubtful, up to now they have always struck me as too timid, almost as though they are apologising for being on the ice. Well, tomorrow we will see.

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Schultheiss's 6th and Berntsson's 7th place final standings (total of 13) have earned Sweden three spots in next year's European Championships in Helsinki.

Congratulations to them both! I look forward to seeing them in Gothenberg.

:blush: to Tomas Verner for his first major championship title!

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The Championships are over and the gala event was broadcast this afternoon. I have it on DVD - of course it was wonderful. A couple of falls, but no display of nerves as nothing was at stake.

To sum up the event - in a personal way I would like to add. I will tell you what appealed to me.

First of course I was very glad for the two Swedish guys, they were great. The one Swedish girl participating was competent, but without a doubt she will improve. Norway and Denmark were nowhere to be seen, but Finland! Three really talented girls - no guys though. I assume all Finnish guys do hockey in stead. We had Kiira Korpi whom I have seen before, very classical and calm. Two new ones, Laura Lepisto and Jenni Vähämaa (yes, one writes it like that in Finnish). Jenny is only 15, but if she progresses well and slowly and doesnt get injured, this is a girl to keep one's eyes on for the future. A great talent I would say.

Then I must say that I have always been rather fond of Elena Gedevanishvili, but sadly she hasnt progressed much.

Then there was a girl from Spain, she was actually born in the Canary Islands, she also showed promise. Good for Spain. And I even saw a Turkish girl, would you believe it.

The coverage was reasonable only, yet I saw everything there was to see. And for me, the absolute highlight was that wonderful beautiful, exquisite Masquerade waltz done by Maxim Shabalin and Oksana Domnina (Russia of course). That to me at any rate was perfection :P

So now we have Gothenburg to look forward to 18-23 March! Hope to meet you all then!

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