Thursday, December 11, 2014

The Best go to Barcelona! 2014 Grand Prix Final Preview/Predictions

What fun must it be to have made the GPF this year! I mean, how often does the competitive circuit envelop a whole new country? And such a breathtaking city?

By the time I get this finished and posted, the Junior GP events will already have started. But the Pairs SP kicks things off for the senior crew at 2:15 (Eastern Time) this afternoon. Check out this schedule... and if you want to keep score on my predictions to tease me about them in the comments later, here they are:

GPF Predictions

GOLD: Stolbova/Klimov (RUS)
SILVER: Duhamel/Radford (CAN)
BRONZE: Kavaguti/Smirnov (RUS)
Dark Horse: Sui/Han (CHN)

Because... while the Canadians have the most challenging elements of the field in their arsenal (including a throw quad salchow that has yet to be landed at a GP event), I think Stol/Klim are seen as the more polished, complete package.

GOLD: Tatsuki Machida (JPN)
SILVER: Javier Fernandez (ESP)
BRONZE: Takahito Mura (JPN)
Dark Horse: Yuzuru Hanyu (JPN)

Because... Javi’s dealing with a lot, competing in such a major event at home for the first time after having almost single-handedly brought this sport to Spain’s masses. Much as I’d love to think it’ll roll off his back, his semi-sloppy free skates thus far indicate he’ll be a gamble for gold here. (I still hope he wins, though. That would be beyond cool.)

GOLD: Weaver/Poje (CAN)
SILVER: Chock/Bates (USA)
BRONZE: Papadakis/Cizeron (FRA)
Dark Horse: Shibutani/Shibutani (USA)

Because... while Wea/Po and C/B are pretty compatible when you look at their scores from their winning GP events, I can’t see the reigning World Silver Medalists losing to anyone in this field... so long as they don’t collapse a lift or spin out of orbit on a twizzle, that is.

GOLD: Elena Radionova (RUS)
SILVER: Elizaveta Tuktamysheva (RUS)
BRONZE: Julia Lipnitskaia (RUS)
Dark Horse: Anna Pogorilaya (RUS)

Because... it’s a preview of Russian Nationals for a reason. And much as I’d love to see Ashley Wagner crash this particular podium party, I don’t think she can amass the kind of points needed to do so.

As always, you can follow me on Twitter @KLBSt8ofSk8... I’ll be tagging my comments with #GPF14.Enjoy the happenings as Act I of the 2014-15 skating season draws to a close!


Sandra Pegomas said...

What about Maxim Kovtun ???

Thank you for your pr├ędictions :-)


Kelli Lawrence said...

Hi Sandra! All things being equal (and I know that's not always the case), I see Kovtun about 4th here. Got the jumps, but I think his PCS will lag behind the ones I put in the top 3.

I didn't put him as the Dark Horse because Yanyu's such a wild card right now-- if he's back to form (or close), he'll be on the podium. If he's closer to what we saw at NHK, though... no bueno.

Sandra Pegomas said...

Ok !!! I understand ! Thank you very much :-)

Continue, I love your pr├ędictions +++

Kelli Lawrence said...

Thanks, that's great to hear!