Sunday, 20 September 2009

Happy Birthday to...

...Brian Joubert and Alban Preaubert! The french skaters share birthdays, though Joubert was born in '84, whilst Preaubert was born in '85. So happy birthday boys! I look forward to seeing you both at Trophee Eric Bompard, in less than a month!

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Evan and Johnny talk sense

Evan Lysacek is a good competitor. The clip below from the recent 2009 United States Olympic Team Media Summit shows of Evan Lysacek shows him speakig about his preparation for the Olympics. He has a great attitude, and to me seems to speak like a champion! His drive and focus are really admirable. Watch it below. Oh, and thanks to Aaron from Axels, Loops and Spins for bringing this to my attention.

Speaking of good competitors, Johhny Weir also recently did a Q&A session for his website, and as ever it was fascinating. One answer left me asking questions though:
from Jennie

Q: My question is about Patrick Chan and Brian Joubert. Are you familiar with their war of words? I think Patrick pretty much said that Brian's programs are void of actual choreography so he has to have the quad. If so, who do you agree with?

A: I was at the World Championships and was made aware of their little battle in the press. Brian has always had a very direct way of voicing his opinion through the years and he has had his share of criticism for it. What struck me was that a young boy, only in his second championship wanted to throw down with one of the mainstays of the podium at the World Championships. That would have been like me attacking Yagudin in my first season on the Grand Prix. I found it a bit disrespectful. I believe everyone has a right to their opinion but show it in the correct way. I may not be one to talk about this since my mouth has run away with me from time to time, but I respect every skater who can get out there and show their heart and soul when they compete and in his way, Brian Joubert does that, as does Patrick Chan. I think mutual respect is necessary for all athletes.

What do think about what Johnny says? Personally, I think he was a very good point, as I also have to admit I found Chan's comments "disrespectful" and unnecessary. However, should it be like that? That Joubert has the edge of many more years of competition and so Chan is not allowed to voice his opinion, however harsh it may be, about him? After all, Chan beat Joubert at least twice last season (Trophee Eric Bompard and Worlds). Or is Johnny right that you should be respectful to your "elders"?

Monday, 14 September 2009

French Masters

I was unfortunate in that so far all of the French Masters I've been able to see is Brian Joubert's long program, and even that was without sound. Hopefully the videos will make Youtube soon. Anyway, I comment on this because I think Joubert is going to do well this season. He's definitely got the drive, as this will be his last Olympic shot. His performance from French Masters may show a lack of consistancy (he falls on the quad toe, for example) but in terms of a program it seems fantasic. It is choreographed by Albena Denkova and Maxim Staviski, which might have been a controversial choice given Staviski's recent "troubles" but the choreography is great. Joubert seems to have got some really graceful, almost balletic choreography which, apart from his "Hallelujah" exhibition, is a bit of a departure from his usual macho style. Furthermore, his spins have really improved, which is undoubtedly a result of his recent coaching from Lucinda Ruh, the spinning expert. Joubert may not have the jumps completely solid, at least in that performance, but past seasons have shown that he starts off the season weakly and then peaks at Worlds (like many skaters do), so I believe he can do the same this year. I love this program, and I hope my opinion doesn't change once I actually hear it with the music,which is the piece "Overcome", a previous Yagudin exhibition program. It's known that Joubert is a Yagudin fan and one could deduce that he is trying to emulate Yagudin's Olympic success, perhaps? Either way, tell me your comments on the program.

Friday, 11 September 2009

Program of the Day

Program for today comes from the recent Golden West Championships, and is Mirai Nagasu's new short program. Personally, I love it! It's set to the Pirates of the Caribbean soundtrack but it's not a cliched cut of the music (unlike her Carmen LP, but that's another post...) Mirai's really got great speed now as she skates and the positions she hits on her spirals and spins are amazing, as ever. I'm excited to see her progression over the coming season, and I think she'll do really well.