Thursday, December 6, 2018

2018 ISU Senior GP Final Predictions

Yes, I realize I haven’t posted notes from either Rostelecom Cup or Internationaux de France yet… but once again the next event is upon us already, so allow me to jump to Senior Grand Prix Predictions!

Here is the schedule if you’re on Eastern Time like me… (late starts on things because Vancouver is on Pacific Time, as 2010 Winter Olympics viewers may recall)

10:45 PM Men’s Short Program
MIDNIGHT Ladies’ Short Program

10:05 PM Rhythm Dance
11:20 PM Pairs Short Program
12:35 AM Men’s Free Skate

4:55 PM Ladies Free Skate
10:00 PM Free Dance
11:20 PM Pairs Free Skate

With only 6 in each category, I’m going to do what I think I’ve done in the past (?) and try to predict all the placements. Remember that the number of points someone has going into the Final is not necessarily representative of how they’ll fare in this particular field.

Also, remember that Yuzuru Hanyu scratched from this year’s GPF due to injury (replaced by Canada’s Keegan Messing).

GOLD Shoma Uno (JPN)
SILVER Nathan Chen (USA)
BRONZE Sergei Voronov (RUS)
4 Michal Brezina (CZE)
5 Cha Jun-hwan (KOR)
6 Keegan Messing (CAN)

Neither Uno nor Chen has been flawless this GP season; if both continue as such here at the Final I think the judges will favor the reigning OSM.

GOLD Rika Kihira (JPN)
SILVER Alina Zagitova (RUS)
BRONZE Satoko Miyahara (JPN)
4 Elizaveta Tuktamysheva (RUS)
5 Kaori Sakamoto (JPN)
6 Sofia Samodurova (RUS)

I’m admittedly counting on Kihira to hit at least one of her triple axels to edge Zagitova out what should be a pretty tight battle.

GOLD James/Cipres (FRA)
SILVER Tarasova/Morozov (RUS)
BRONZE Zabiiako/Enbert (RUS)
4 Peng/Jin (CHN)
5 Pavliuchenko/Khodykin (RUS)
6 Della Monica/Guarise (ITA)

A pretty messy pairs season thus far, even for those who usually skate rather clean… but J/C and T/M should top this field.

GOLD Stepanova/Bukin (RUS)
SILVER Hubbell/Donohue (USA)
BRONZE Sinitsina/Katsalapov (RUS)
4 Guignard/Fabbri (ITA)
5 Zahorski/Guerreiro (RUS)
6 Hawayek/Baker (USA)

H/D have been fantastic thus far in 2018-19, but Step/Buk seem to have the extra firepower going for them.