The French Cup takes place in Rouen this week on 30 and 31 January. The event attracts a large number of synchronized skating teams from all over the world, from Japan to the USA.
Key teams taking part at senior level are Paradise from Russia, Les Supremes from Canada, Haydenettes from USA, and Rockettes, Team Unique, and Marigold Ice Unity from Finland. The UK is represented by Wales & West’s Team Spirit. Last year Team Unique took gold, Rockettes silver and Marigold Ice Unity bronze. Paradise were fourth and Haydenettes fifth, so it will be interesting to see how they all fare this year.
Among the top teams taking part at junior level are Les Supremes from Canada and Fintastic from Finland. Last year Fintastic took gold and Les Supremes bronze. Nottingham Icicles represent the UK.
With the British championships recently concluded in Nottingham, UK teams Icicles and Spirit will be keen to see how their scores stack up in an ISU event.
Update: Icicles scored 26.26 in their short with deductions of 2.00 compared with 34.60 at the British with deductions of 2.00, and scored 54.44 in the free compared with 74.78 at the British. The total score of 80.70 falls 28.68 points short of that of 109.38 achieved at the British, making at least four years in succession where scores at junior level by different teams at the top British domestic event have failed by some considerable margin to stack up at ISU events.
Marks aside, what’s important in a field of changing numbers of teams is progression against the next team up. Unfortunately, Icicles were not able to make headway against Black Diam’s of France, who scored 90.60 this year. Last year the scores were Black Diam’s 98.49 and NIC Icicles 94.15. This year Icicles finished 11th out of 12 teams, compared with 14th out of 16 last year. French team Les Cometes, who last year were 16th, overtook Icicles this year to finish 9th on 86.02.
Spirit scored 27.54 with deductions of 1.00 compared with 28.12 at the British. In the free they scored 48.02 compared with 55.66 at the British (totals of 75.56 against 83.78, or 8.22 adrift). However, despite finishing 16th out of 16, the score is an improvement on last year’s French Cup total of 68.34, especially considering French team Les Atlantides fell from 96.31 to 87.26 at the same events.
Official site: www.frenchcup.fr
Live streaming: www.frenchcup.fr/en/event-info/live/live-streaming/
Results (when available): www.frenchcup.fr/la-competition/resultats-isu/2015/