Dmitri
The men’s final at 2020 Russian nationals in Krasnoyarsk fell far short of a high grade of execution. Of the 16 men competing only seven managed to stay vertical with nine tumbling not only to the ice but also in the standings. 

Sitting in fourth after the short, Dmitri Aliev won the competition despite two falls and a second-place finish in the free skate. The 20-year-old from St. Petersburg landed his opening quad Lutz, but crashed to the ice on the second jump, a quad toe. Later in the program he received an under-rotation call on the lone triple Axel in his program and fell during the step sequence. Aliev earned 173.63 for the performance and a combined total of 260.98 to snare the gold.

“I am very satisfied with my job in spite of the mistakes I made in the short and free programs,” he said. “I am not upset because I am pleased with what I am doing. I am feeling better with each competition. Now I need to get more confidence. Right now I haven’t realized yet that I won. My coach said that this is my first serious title. I did a lot to be on the podium and to be Russian champion.”

In his debut at senior nationals, Artur Danielian, the 2017 World Junior silver medalist, finished second at both his Junior Grand Prix events and also at the Denis Ten Memorial – each time defeated by a Russian man. Sitting in a distant 13th after the short, Danielian laid down the performance of his lifetime, winning the long program and defeating all three men who had won over him internationally this season. He captured his fourth silver medal of the year with 253.42 – almost 30 points better than his highest score he had received this season.

“I was nervous but I wanted to show what I can do and what I have worked on with my coaches,” said Danielian, 16. “Yesterday not everything worked out, so today I had to go out with a new focus and show what I I am able to do.”

It was not the best day for Alexander Samarin who went into the competition looking for a victory. Eight after the short, he fell on an attempted quad flip and midway through the program crashed to the ice on a triple Axel. Ultimately, he finished in third place with 252.74 points.

“There is nothing to say about my performances because I didn’t show the level I wanted,” Samarin admitted. “I came to the competition to show my best, but it didn’t happen. As they say, there is no use crying over spilt milk. We’ll return home, think through it and prepare for the next event. I hope I can go to Europeans and show a good result.”

Makar Ignatov, first after the short, dropped to fourth with 249.46 points. A trio of juniors placed fifth to seventh: Andrei Mozalev (240.55), Daniil Samsonov (240.17), and Petr Gumennik (238.08). Veteran Sergei Voronov did not attempt a quad, stumbled out of a triple Axel and was dinged for an invalid element. He finished a distant ninth with 233.82. With files from Tatjana Flade in Krasnoyarsk.

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