I need to watch some of these Nebelhorn performances

At least tomorrow IceNetwork comes on before I have to run off to work; hopefully I’ll be able to see Jeremy Ten.  But meanwhile, some of the scores alone have sent my eyes flying.

The pairs, for instance.  If Tatiana Volosozhar & Maxim Trankov can score this much, and on their rivals’ home ice no less, I think it becomes likely they will be unbeatable in Sochi should they skate clean.  So far both the times they’ve beaten Savchenko & Szolkowy the latter have made it easy with bad frees, and the one time both teams skated a clean one the Germans won, but unless Savchenko & Szolkowy actually start posting the same scores(maybe not impossible, but still…)  And speaking of German pairs and things that might be decided earlier than anticipated, apparently Aaron van Cleave is still not a German citizen, but it may not matter.  What a comeback from the Wendes to break 60!  One could even argue they should continue after Sochi, since with that kind of score, provided they can keep it up, they should have some time as the top German pair(I’m making no assumptions about the longevity of a pair of Prolss & Blommeart’s current ages).  Great revenge from Mervin Tran too, with him and Purich establishing themselves as solid contenders for the third Canadian spot, while Takahashi & Kihara are looking like they’ll make it there, but not looking like they’ll do anything else once they’re there.

All in all, it seemed the Olympic and medal contenders were pretty much separated, with even Elene Gedevanishvili scoring low, though thankfully she’s currently in qualifying position, which after recent events is probably all she cares about at this point.  She should be especially lucky, considering more than one name being bandied about before the competition had a heartbreaker today.  Some you can’t blame, though; one only wonders what was going through Juulia Trukkila’s head, when she probably was subjected to pressure to win a spot she knew they didn’t want her to use; no wonder she didn’t skate well.  Most painful is probably the fall of Sonia LaFuente, possibly blowing a opportunity where the advantage was hers for the second time in a row.  She might not be quite out of it yet, but it would probably take the skate of her life to make it now.

All in all, it was not a good day for Spain, with Sara Hurtado & Adria Diaz not in qualifying position either(my personal biggest disappointment of the day), though they are in position for first alternate, with of course the Lithuanian situation making that a hopeful spot to be in as well.  And in theory, they should probably be able to make up two points on Federica Testa & Lukas Csolley no problem(and even if they don’t, is she getting Slovakian citizenship at any point?)  But in practice, after today?  Who knows.  I don’t think anyone thought the highest ranked qualifiers after the short would be Agafonova & Ucar!  Guess after their Worlds disappointment they were determined not to blow this one.  Nor were O’Brien and Merriman; their position right now is especially good to see after what happened to them four years ago.  Meanwhile, I continue to wonder about Cathy & Chris Reed, though they’re in position right now, and hey, if all else fails, they’ll probably make the quota for the team event.  But the real losers of the day, obviously were Irina Shtork & Taavi Rand, who could’ve genuinely earned their own spot this time around, but now don’t even have his brother to earn it for them.  Though the weirdest fall was Heekin-Canedy & Dun’s; good thing they qualified for the Olympics already!

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