Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov captured top spot in the rhythm dance at the 2020 Russian Championships on Thursday by a 1.30-point margin over Alexandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin.
Sinitsina and Katsalapov had a far better outing in Krasnoyarsk than they did at the Grand Prix Final two weeks earlier. The Moscow-based team earned Level 4s for the midline step and pattern sequences and the rotational lift. They twizzled into the lead with 88.43 points. “It was really nice to skate and we enjoyed everything — the audience, the ice,” said Sinitsina. “We skated better, cleaner and maybe more energetic. Nevertheless, we’re happy that we skated that way.”
When asked how they recovered from the shock of finishing sixth and last at the Final, Katsalapov responded that shock was too strong a word. “We had no time to recover. We came back home and basically got straight to work. For us, it is was a reason to constructively analyze why it went that way and we prepared purposefully for nationals. We tried to fix everything that we lost a lot of points on and we hope we can show all this now like we did it in training. So, if not for the mistake on the twizzle (he earned a Level 3), the elements were well done, with quality. So we improved in something, but I have to be even calmer going into the element that I have a special fight with. We can do better.”
Stepanova and Bukin put down an energetic performance earning Level 4s for the twizzles, pattern sequence, and the curve lift. They finished second with 87.13 points. “When we got off the ice the coaches were satisfied,” Stepanova said. “The performance was good but not our best. There was not much time after the Grand Prix Final. We switched our mindset quickly, and left all negative emotions behind us. We tried to fix the technical mistakes we made.”
Tiffani Zagorski and Jonathan Guerreiro danced into third with 77.38 points. They also earned Level 4s for three elements (twizzles, midline step sequence and the lift) but their pattern dance was graded Level 3. Nonetheless, Zagorski said they were satisfied with their performance. “We improved, we have a new costume, and we’re pleased. We really wanted to be emotional, bright and really go for it and I think we pretty much stuck to that. It probably was the best performance of the season so far, but we know we can still do better.
“After Grenoble, I had to take two weeks off completely because of my knee. After that things got a lot better,” she explained. “Unfortunately, obviously the recovery process is not a straight line, and after one or two weeks back in training I had problems again and had to take another three days off. Bit by bit it got better. There are still some issues but, in general, it’s much better. We could actually prepare normally for this competition.” With files from Tatjana Flade in Krasnoyarsk.
2020 RUSSIAN CHAMPIONSHIPS
KOSTORNAIA ON FIRE AT RUSSIAN CHAMPIONSHIPS
DMITRI ALIEV STRIKES SIBERIAN GOLD
VICTORY DANCE FOR SINITSINA AND KATSALAPOV
TEENAGE TRIO STEAL THE SHOW IN KRASNOYARSK
TARASOVA MOROZOV WIN SHORT PROGRAM