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Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Analysing the TES Minimum at Worlds

After the ISU voted to remove the preliminaries from Europeans, Four Continents, Junior Worlds and Worlds, they implemented a minimum technical score requirement for these championships as a concession to offset the increased cost of hosting the event.  This score may be earned at any approved ISU event for this or the previous season and can be earned for different programs at different events.

The scores for worlds are particularly high, and many have speculated that smaller federations will be unable to field teams for championships under these requirements.

Men
Men must have a 65 TES in the free skate as well as a 35 TES in the short program to be eligible to compete at Worlds.

For men, 22 of the 27 men who competed in the preliminary round at Worlds did not achieve scores that would qualify them for worlds this season.  Only 4 of the 12 that qualified for the short program have the required scores along with Zoltan Kelemen who did not make it out of qualifying.  Of the 24 skaters who qualified for the free skate, four do not meet the minimum qualifying score.

Canada has three spots in the men's event this season and three men have met the qualifying score: Patrick Chan, Kevin Reynolds and Andrei Rogozine.  France also has three spots and three meeting the requirement: Florent Amodio, Chafik Besseghier and Brian Joubert.  Japan may send three men to Worlds and have seven men to choose from: Yuzuru Hanyu, Takahiko Kozuka, Tatsuki Machida, Daisuke Murakami, Nobunari Oda, Daisuke Takahashi and Keiji Tanaka.

The Czech Republic will have two men at Worlds and two men currently to choose from: Michal Brezina and Tomas Verner.  For Kazakhstan's two spots only Denis Ten is currently eligible.  The United States currently has seven men eligible to fill two spots: Max Aaron, Jeremy Abbott, Jason Brown, Stephen Carriere, Joshua Farris, Ross Miner and Adam Rippon.  Italy also has two spots at Worlds but their only current qualifier (Samuel Contesti) has retired.

If Worlds were held today, 40 men have scores that would qualify them to compete (including two who have retired).  However, only 22 would be eligible based on number of entrants allowed per country.  One of Kazakhstan's and both of Italy's slots would go unused.  A total of 13 countries would be represented including Romania and Uzbekistan.  

One of the biggest hurdles for the men to get to Worlds is the 65 TES in the free skate.  It is nearly 20 points higher than the required score for any other discipline and is 20 points higher than the minimum for Europeans and Four Continents.

Ladies
Ladies must have a minimum of 48 TES in the free skate and 28 TES in the short program to compete at Worlds.

Of the 30 ladies who competed in the preliminary round at Worlds last season, only 4 currently have scores that would qualify them for Worlds this season.  Of the 24 who qualified for the free skate, nine do not meet this season's qualifying score, including Ksenia Makarova, who's 10th place finish was good enough to earn her two spots on the Grand Prix this season.

The Italian ladies earned three spots for Worlds this season and have two current choices: Carolina Kostner and Valentina Marchei.  Japan also has three slots with seven possible choices: Mao Asada, Haruka Imai, Satoko Miyahara, Kanako Murakami, Miu Sato, Risa Shoji and Akiko Suzuki.  The Russian women have three slots and eight currently eligible (Lipnitskaia is not old enough to compete at Worlds this season): Polina Agafonova, Sofia Biryukova, Polina Korobeynikova, Alena Leonova, Polina Shelepen, Adelina Sotnikova, Maria Stavitskaia and Elizaveta Tuktamisheva.

China has two ladies slots at Worlds with three currently eligible: Zijun Li, Kexin Zhang and Ziquan Zhao.  Georgia is entitled to two slots but only Elene Gedevanishvili meets the requirements.  The US may send two ladies with nine currently eligible: Samantha Cesario, Alissa Czisny, Christina Gao, Gracie Gold, Vanessa Lam, Mirai Nagasu, Ashley Wagner, Agnes Zawadzki and Caroline Zhang.

If Worlds were held today, 40 ladies have scores that would qualify them for Worlds (and are age eligible).  However, only 19 would be eligible based on the number of entrants allowed per country.  One of Georgia and one of Italy's slots would go unused.  A total of 11 countries would be represented including Estonia, Korea and Ukraine.

For the ladies it seems like the more difficult score to obtain for Worlds is the free skate, which is a full 12 points higher than the requirement for Europeans and Four Continents.  Far more junior ladies met the Worlds requirements than in any other discipline, likely due to the emphasis on the junior level on triple+triple combinations which boost the TES scores.

Pairs
Pair teams must meet the minimum scores of 45 TES in the free skate and 28 TES in the short program to be eligible for Worlds.

In Pairs, only one of the 11 teams who competed in the preliminary round meet the required score for this season.  Of the 16 teams who qualified to compete in the free skate, only two did not meet this season's required score.

China has qualified three teams for this year's Worlds and currently have three teams meeting the minimum score requirements: Pang/Tong, Sui/Han and Yu/Jin (Zhang/Zhang also met the requirements but have ended their partnership).  Russia also has three slots at this year's Worlds and currently has six teams eligible to compete: Bazarova/Larionov, Gerboldt/Enbert, Kavaguti/Smirnov, Martyusheva/Rogonov, Stolbova/Klimov and Volosozhar/Trankov (Iliushechkina/Maisuradze and Petaikina/Kurduykov also met the requirements but have split).

Canada may enter two pairs at Worlds and has four teams that meet the requirements: Dube/Wolfe, Duhamel/Radford, Lawrence/Swiegers and Moore-Towers/Moscovitch (Bobak/Beharry also met the requirements but have split).  Germany also has two slots and two teams eligible: Hausch/Wende and Savchenko/Szolkowy.  Italy may enter two teams at Worlds but only has one team eligible: Berton/Hotarek.  Japan also has two slots and only one team meeting the requirements: Takahashi/Tran.  The United States may enter two teams and have three meeting the requirements: Castelli/Shnapir, Denney/Coughlin and Marley/Brubaker (Cain/Reagan and Evora/Ladwig met the requirements but have split).

For the pairs, it seems to be the short program score for Worlds that is the most difficult to achieve.  Only two junior teams met the requirements for Worlds last season, likely due to the fact that juniors are restricted to double twists and solo double jumps which limits their potential technical score.

Of the 26 teams that met the minimum score for Worlds by the end of last season, five have split.  Of those that remain, if Worlds were held today, 14 teams would be able to compete after country maximums are taken into account with Italy and Japan not utilizing their second slot.  Eight countries would be represented.

Dance
Dance teams must score at least 39 TES in the free dance and 29 TES in the short dance to compete at Worlds.

In Ice Dance only seven of the 23 teams that competed in the preliminary round had scores that meet this year's minimum requirements.  Interestingly, Silna and Kurakin meet the minimum score for Worlds and finished 21st in qualifying last season while teams that finished as high as 2nd in qualifying did not meet the requirement.  Of the 20 teams that qualified for the free skate, only five do not meet this season's requirements, including Huang and Zheng, whose 12th place finish earned them two spots on the Grand Prix.

Canada has three slots at Worlds this year with three teams currently eligible: Orford/Williams, Virtue/Moir and Weaver/Poje.  Russia also has three slots with eight teams meeting the requirements: Bobrova/Soloviev, Ilinykh/Katsalapov, Korobkova/Gleikhengauz, Pushkash/Guerreiro, Riazanova/Tkachenko, Sinitsina/Zhiganshin, Stepanova/Bukin and Yankovskaia/Mozgov.  The US will have three slots as well with four teams currently eligible: Aldridge/Eaton, Davis/White, Hubbell/Donohue and Shibutani/Shibutani.

France will send two teams to Worlds this season with three teams currently meeting the requirements: Papadakis/Cizeron, Pechalat/Bourzat and Zahorski/Miart.  Italy can also send two teams and three meet the requirements: Alessandrini/Vaturi, Cappellini/Lanotte and Guignard/Fabbri.

In Ice Dance, it seems that the Short Dance score for Worlds is the hardest requirement to meet, especially with the bulk of the technical score based on the execution of key points in the compulsory dance section of the Short Dance.

If Worlds were held today, of the 33 teams that meet the requirements, 22 would be eligible to compete after country requirements are taken into account.  Fourteen countries would be represented, including Austria, Azerbaijan, Finland, Hungary and Lithuania.

The intention behind the increased required minimum technical score for Worlds was to eliminate the need for preliminaries by narrowing the field of athletes who are eligible to compete.  At the half-way point (skaters have two seasons to achieve the minimum technical score), only in ice dance would there be enough competitors to meet the number of entrants in the free skate.  No event would have the number of entrants normally in the short program at Worlds.

The ability to attend Senior B competitions will have a large influence on who can attend Worlds this season.  Historically, European skaters attend many Senior B events throughout the year while few North American and Asian skaters attend few due to the length of travel required as most of the events are held in Europe.  These events will likely see increased entries especially as Worlds approaches.

 Some countries may see their hands tied in terms of who they can send to Worlds.  For example, neither Amelie Lacoste or Cynthia Phaneuf met the required minimums last season.  Kaetlyn Osmond is the only Canadian lady to meet those scores and if Worlds were held today, Skate Canada would have to send Osmond regardless of results at nationals.

While these fields are smaller, there is still a good representation of smaller federations in several of the events.  Ice Dance is the most diverse event while Pairs is the least diverse (although Pairs rarely has a large representation of countries).

These numbers will likely grow throughout the season as several skaters or teams have met either the short program or the free skate minimum score and may only be a few points shy.  Some skaters may even choose to focus on a particular segment at a Senior B competition if they are attempting to meet their minimums.

2 comments:

  1. Thank you for this analysing!

    But I have to specify that Petaikina/Kurduykov in pairs had also split.

    ReplyDelete