Crystallettes

Canadian, Finnish, and U.S. teams to compete for World berths

You can’t become a World Champion without getting to the World Championships.

Sounds painfully obvious, no? While true, it is the most important consideration for Senior teams headed to their respective National Championships in Canada, Finland, and the U.S.A. this week and next. Each country will qualify two teams to compete at the World Championships in Gothenburg, Sweden, in April. But while it will be considered an upset if Nexxice (CAN) and the Haydenettes (USA) don’t earn berths to represent their countries at Worlds, Finnish Nationals is anyone’s game. (more…)

Nexxice rallies from behind to win gold and $15,000 at SynchroFest

After placing 4th in yesterday’s short program at the 2011 SynchroFest International in London, Nexxice was untouchable tonight, winning the free skate by a solid margin of 13.44 points, and finishing nearly 10 points ahead of silver medalists, the Haydenettes, overall. In addition to their gold hardware, Nexxice also took home $15,000 in prize money.

The final standings were as follows:

  1. Nexxice (CAN) 185.15 ($15,000)
  2. Haydenettes (USA) 175.44 ($12,000)
  3. Rockettes (FIN) 174.05 ($9,000)
  4. Paradise (RUS) 160.92 ($6,000)
  5. Les Supremes (CAN) 153.76 ($3,000)
  6. Crystallettes (USA) 142.51 ($1,000)
  7. Jingu Ice Messengers Grace (JPN) 118.03 ($1,000)
  8. Fusion (CAN) 112.07 ($1,000)

Detailed free skate protocols are available here, and if you missed the performances, you can still view them in the Skatebuzz archive. (more…)

Haydenettes lead SynchroFest after short program

The short programs for the 2011 SynchroFest International wrapped up last night–or did they?

After Rockettes’ score was changed during the event last night–they were initially awarded 61.23, which was then corrected to 59.83–another revision was posted this morning. Les Supremes’ original score of 57.87 has been adjusted to 55.20, dropping them into 5th place below Nexxice. That leaves the final final short program standings as follows:  (more…)

Top teams in the world set to compete at London SynchroFest International

It’s a great week to be involved in synchro in Canada.

The synchro community is still buzzing after news broke only a few days ago that the 2013 and 2014 National Championships will both be hosted in Western Canada. Hopefully everyone still has some excitement left in the tank, because there’s a big event to get revved up about in the more immediate future–in less than a week, some of the top teams in the world will be in Ontario to compete for $50,000 in prize money, the biggest purse ever awarded in synchro, at the 2011 London SynchroFest International December 28 and 29.

And the best news of all, for those of us who can’t be there–live streaming! Thanks Santa! (more…)

Helsinki welcomes the world April 8 and 9

It doesn’t feel like nearly a year has passed since I was planning, packing, and praying that my luggage would greet me in Colorado Springs for the World Synchronized Skating Championships after a journey that was to involve an inexcusable number of stop-overs in various American cities (pro tip: don’t wait until the last minute to book flights through Expedia). Miracle of miracles, it did–it wouldn’t have been the least bit shocking had it not, however, given that each of the three prior Worlds I’d been to were marinated in their own special flavor of “this will be funny later” sauce. But those are stories for another time.

The 2011 edition of the WSSC kicks off next week in Helsinki, and should be an exciting one. Reportedly the event is close to sold out, which really isn’t surprising since Finland’s entries, Rockettes and Marigold Ice Unity, are the defending gold and silver medalists respectively. There will be a number of teams with their eyes on the podium, however:

  • 2010 marked the first year Team Surprise (SWE) was shut out of the medals, ever, including World Challenge Cups (precursor to the official ISU WSSC).
  • An error in the short program kept Nexxice (CAN) off the podium in 2010, after they won gold in 2009, and bronze two years in a row before that.
  • The Haydenettes (USA) finally earned a medal in 2010 (bronze), after being perennial fourth-place bridesmaids more times than my normally encyclopedic synchro brain can remember. They’ll want another one.
  • Miami University is the only other American team to ever medal at Worlds (silver in 2007). They’re back on the World Team in 2011 after being beat out for USA 2 honours by the Crystallettes last year.
  • Oh, those Russians. Traditionally, the teams from Russia and Germany duke it out to see who can earn the distinction of being the 5th-best country at the competition, thereby earning 2 berths to the next year’s Worlds. Paradise (RUS) has been the only non-Swedish, Finnish, Canadian, or American team to challenge for a medal, when they placed 2nd in the short program at Worlds in 2007. Never count them out.
  • Les Suprêmes, Canada’s second entry, has been absent from Worlds since 2005. Though Nexxice beat them by a fair margin at Canadian Nationals, they are the only other team in the mix to have stood on the podium, earning bronze back in 2003.

Wikipedia has a handy summary of all of the podium results of past Worlds.

The competition kicks off with the short program next Friday, April 8 at 8:40 AM (MDT). The free skate will follow on Saturday, April 9 at 5:45 AM (ack!) MDT. I’ve yet to find any information about live streaming, but will post an update here if I do. In the meantime, the Worlds official website has some great team profiles, photos, and promotional videos worth checking out.

Happy skating to everyone at the competition, and happy internetting to the rest of us!