Ice Network

Radionova leads Russian sweep of ladies podium

Fernández rallies for title; Weaver, Poje take gold; Stolbova, Klimov first
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Elena Radionova topped an all-Russian podium at Rostelecom Cup, coming away with a personal-best free skate score (139.53) and overall score (211.32). The world bronze medalist was sharp, landing all of her jumps on the way to winning her third career Grand Prix gold medal. -Getty Images

Competition concluded Saturday in Moscow at the 2015 Rostelecom Cup in Moscow, as all four disciplines wrapped up competition.

Ice dance

Canada's Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje danced off with the gold medal following the free dance. Italy's Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte claimed the silver medals and the bronze went to Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov of Russia.

Performing to "On the Nature of Daylight" by Max Richter and "Run" by Ludovico Einaudi, Weaver and Poje produced innovative lifts and smooth step sequences, earning a Level 4 for the twizzles, two lifts and their combination spin as well as Level 3's for their footwork and straight-line lift. The 2014 world silver medalists scored 104.09 points to come away with a total score of 173.58 to win their second Grand Prix title this season.

"We put together two really good performances," Weaver said. I think the free could have been a little bit stronger in some places, but it is still early in the season. We felt like the competition was very, very strong. We're happy we were able to be strong and come home with the gold medal."

Cappellini and Lanotte completed four Level 4 and three Level 3 elements in their playful routine to music from La Dolce Vita. The 2014 world and European champions earned 103.79 points to finish in second place at 171.61 points overall.

"We lost a few points in this competition here and our plan for (the Grand Prix Final in) Barcelona is to get feedback and to go home and work on it," Lanotte said. "We'll try to make our performances stronger, particularly the short dance which was not as strong as we can perform it. Also, we didn't have enough time to work on our programs in between our Grand Prix events."

Sinitsina and Katsalapov's dance to "Io ci sarò" was highlighted by difficult lifts and footwork. The Russians garnered a personal-best score of 103.77 points to come away with 167.40 points overall.

"This is our second Grand Prix (this season), and overall, we are happy that we skated clean again," Katsalapov said. "We improved our score. We continue to gather opinions that we'll take into account. We still have time to get better."

Italy's Charlene Guignard and Marco Fabbri placed fourth with 153.54 points, ahead of Russia's Elena Ilinykh and Ruslan Zhiganshin, who came away with 153.01 points. Ksenia Monko and Kirill Khavalian stood in fifth place following the short dance but withdrew before the free dance because he injured himself.

Weaver and Poje, and Cappellini and Lanotte each clinched trips to the Grand Prix Final. Sinitsina and Katsalapov will wait and see if a second and third place is enough to get them to Spain.


Spain's Javier Fernández claimed gold in the men's event. Russia's Adian Pitkeev picked up the silver medal, his first time landing on the podium at a Grand Prix. Team USA's Ross Minor claimed bronze.

Skating to music from Guys and Dolls, Fernández reeled off a quad toe, a quad salchow-triple toe combination a triple axel and five triple jumps, as well two Level 4 spins. He did, however, fall on a popped salchow. The world champion posted a season's-best score of 184.44 points and racked up 271.43 points overall to move up from second after the short program to first, winning his second Grand Prix gold medal this season.

"I felt much more comfortable today in practice and the warmup than yesterday," Fernández said. "We still have to work on the third quad; I popped and there was a fall. I was so excited that the program went so well. Now, I'll go back to training and prepare for the Grand Prix Final. The final will be a difficult competition with many strong skaters."

Pitkeev, who led after the short program, hit a quadruple toe, triple axel-double toe and five more triples in his routine to The Mission soundtrack, but he crashed on his second triple sxel. The 2014 world junior silver medalist improved his personal-best score significantly with 162.93 points. He finished with 250.47 points overall.

"It was hard for me to pull myself together, because I heard the scores of the others and that everybody had new personal-record scores," Pitkeev said. "I fell on the triple axel, and I was holding back after that a little. I didn't feel so comfortable. But, I'm glad that it worked out and I'm here in this room (at the press conference) again."

Miner's program to a Queen medley featured seven clean triple jumps, but he missed his quad salchow. The Boston-based skater achieved a new personal-best score with 163.56 points, finishing with 248.92 points overall. Miner's score was changed and 0.50 points were added when the technical panel changed the level for his flying change foot combination spin from Level 3 to Level 4.

"I went out there and I stayed calm, which is something I struggled with in the past," Miner said. "Consequently, it was a lot more fun to be out there and fun to skate in front of a packed audience."

Team USA's Adam Rippon pulled up from sixth after the short program to fourth overall with 248.63 points. Mikhail Kolyada of Russia placed fifth with 247.97 points.

Fernández clinched a trip to the Grand Prix Final with his performance.


Russia's Ksenia Stolbova and Fedor Klimov struck gold in the pairs event. Their teammates, Yuko Kavaguti and Alexander Smirnov earned the silver and China's Cheng Peng and Hao Zhang collected the bronze.

Performing to music from The Unknown Known soundtrack by Danny Elfman, Stolbova and Klimov completed a triple twist, throw triple salchow and throw triple flip, as well as two Level 4 spins and lifts. She, however, struggled with the side-by-side jumps. The 2014 Olympic silver medalists scored 139.25 points to finish with a total score of 214.70.

"There were some mistakes, but now it became clear to us in which direction we'll have to work," Klimov said. "With today's result we still have the chance to go to the Grand Prix Final and we hope to go there."

Kavaguti and Smirnov completed a side-by-side triple toe, a triple twist and five Level 4 elements in their performance to "Manfred Symphony" by Tchaikovsky. They missed their throw quad loop and their throw quad salchow. The European champions were awarded 136.32 points and remained in second place at 208.02 points.

"We are pleased with the result today and with our performance overall," Smirnov said. "Too bad that the quad throws didn't happen today. Now we have some time to work on our throws and the twist before the final."

Peng and Zhang's routine to Music from Les pêcheurs de perles included a quadruple twist and a side-by-side triple toe-double toe combination, but Peng fell on their throw quadruple salchow. The Chinese duo picked up 124.94 points to finish with 193.04 overall.

"Our performance today was not bad," Zhang said. "We went for two quads -- the quad twist and quad throw salchow. It hasn't been that long since we include both of them in our program."

Team USA's Tarah Kayne and Daniel O'Shea moved up from sixth after the short to fourth overall with 181.23 points. Natalja Zabijako and Alexander Enbert finished in fifth place (180.56 points). Kavaguti and Smirnov booked their ticket to Barcelona for the Grand Prix Final. Stolbova and Klimov will have to see if a first and fourth place finish will be enough to go to the event.


Elena Radionova led a Russian sweep of the ladies podium, followed by teammates Evgenia Medvedeva and Adelina Sotnikova..

Radionova's performance to the Titanic soundtrack was highlighted by a triple lutz-triple toe combination, a triple loop-loop-triple salchow combination, three more triple jumps and Level 4 spins and footwork. The world bronze medalist set a new personal-best score with 139.53 points, finishing first overall with a total of 211.32 points.

"At the end, I was again overwhelmed by my emotions," Radionova said. "This competition was hard for me; I had to go through a lot of emotions. I feel I redeemed myself after the Cup of China."

Skating to the W.E. soundtrack, Medvedeva hit seven triple jumps including two triple-triple combinations and difficult spins. The world junior champion turned in the top free skate with a new personal-best score of 139.73 points to take silver with a total of 206.76.

"I'm happy with today's performance, not only because I skated fairly clean but also because I came back from that unexpected fall in the short program," Medvedeva said. "At the end of the performance there were so many ovations. That was so nice and is probably the bonus when you skate at home."

Sotnikova produced four triples and excellent spins in her performance to "Je suis malade," but she under-rotated two triple toes in her combination jumps. The reigning Olympic champion scored 119.63 points to finish with 185.11 points overall.

"I am back. There is still a lot of work to do, but it is a big victory for my team," Sotnikova said. "This third place means a lot to me."

Team USA's Polina Edmunds placed fourth (183.20 points), followed by Japan's Rika Hongo with 179.12 points. Canada's Alaine Chartrand slipped from second to sixth (173.42 points).

Radionova and Medvedeva clinched trips to the Grand Prix Final.