Saturday, December 15, 2012

The Return of Carolina Kostner

After months of injury and indecision, Carolina Kostner has returned to competition at the Golden Spin of Zagreb.  Given the time off, she will have to get ready for competition very quickly with the Italian Nationals and European Championships approaching. This may not be her year to win, but it could pay off. In her long, Kostner attempted a Triple Lutz for the first time in several years and landed it despite turning out of it. She appears to be attempting a Triple Flip+Triple Toe as her third jumping pass and going for seven triples. While it is unlikely to all come together this year, putting the content out there may very well her in her attempt to win an Olympic medal.

It is noted that I have an aversion to anyone performing to Bolero, let alone singles skaters. I do not think the new rules allow one to capture the essence of the music, nor do I think the inevitable comparison to Torvill and Dean wins up being flattering to anyone. The music is best expressed by multiple performers in general, as it builds to its climax. My inner Tara Lipinski is noting that Carolina appears notably slower than past seasons, likely due to recovering from injury and time off. Inner Tara is hungry for the triple-triple.  The program is far more interesting than anything Yu-Na Kim put out last weekend. My inner Dick Button is noting the rhythmic quality of the music and the very sexual climax of the music, which Carolina daringly expresses with a Triple Salchow after a long footwork sequence. The steps and choreography build in the second half, while the beginning is the quite vacant. An Oksana Baiul posing section before the second half will prove to be controversial. Many will complain that it is not true skating, yet I do feel that it works for the overall program. What she loses in transitions, she should gain back in interpretation, but the judges don't even use those marks who really cares?

Two of Kostner's triples (salchow and loop) were deemed underrotated in the long, thus the toe loop and lutz were her only truly rotated triples. She managed  110.03 for the long and 64.99 for the short. Given a few more competitions, I expect her to improve quite a bit.  It is unlikely that she will ever repeat the success of last season, but having her in the mix will certainly improve the depth and level of interest in ladies skating.

What do you make of Kostner's return?  Will she be able to contend for a bronze?  Can she be ready by Europeans? Does Bolero make your skin crawl?  Discuss.


  1. Please, 110 points for 1 clean triple at FS ? Is this a joke?

    If she wants high points without jumps, she could go to ice dancing. Her SS, TR is good, but nothing special.

  2. Kostner : female Chan

    Ando : female Plushenko


  3. I like her sp music. There's no one who is intelligent, independent and mature except Carolina Kostner. Other gilrs skate and behave like well trained puppies and that make me uncomfortable.

  4. No offense to Kostner, but this is a shit program compared even to Sotnikova's Bolero from last year.

    But there's not much you can expect from a skater with such bad extension (well, flexibility... rather, sicne her extension is generally fine), ugly spin positions, and her telegraphs really put Slutskaya's to shame. Really I got more excitement watching Soldatova at the 99 Worlds than watching this trainwreck.

    Bolero should be banned. It's absolutely overused and I'm tired of people talking about Torvill and Dean everytime someone uses the music.

    I think when someone makes a signature piece out of a music cut it should be banned henceforth. Baiul's Swan Lake and Black Swan, Bolero, Lyra Angelica, Slutskaya's Culture, etc. Ban that shit, and move on. There is too much good music out there for people to be overusing much of the same cuts, year after year...

  5. I agree that skaters need to expand their music choices for sure, but to ban music? Who's going to judge that can of worms? Cinquanta? No thanks.

  6. Smart lp with slow music and posing moments. It will be helpful for her stamina (and photographers)

  7. much better than MK‘s crap Bolero.

  8. The long program needs mileage before making a judgement, but I think it has potential. The last minute or so is great. The short is brilliant. The Italian mafia and/or Cinquanta is clearly either bribing or threatening Lori because it's amazing how much better her programs for Carolina are. They're more creative and interesting than all of the other shit she does combined.

  9. For years, I found Kostner really irritating to watch - she'd try to fit into the pretty graceful princess mold but gangliness just made her come off as ridiculous, and as with Chan, for years I felt she was way over-scored.

    But in the last few years she's really found a way to 'skate into' her body a lot better - IMO its like with Jeremy Abbott, being able to completely control folding and unfolding those long limbs.

    Anyway, the SP is pretty good but for the windmill arms sections.

    I like this Bolero choreography quite a bit - it's a good program for Kostner.

  10. Though in the weakest field in the history of ladies' FS, anyway she is a reigning world champion. I'm very disappointed with her performance. just mimicking VM's Carmen, even costumes.

    1. Yeah, I forgot Aliona Leonova was a world silver medalist.

    2. I cannot blame Wagner's big dream in this situation. Why not?

      At least,Wagner can do (f)lutz, flip.

  11. Better to do her routines.... Classical music,,, something like Canon or Mozart.
    It doesn't suit her.