Kamila Valieva and Daria Usacheva lead after the short program

Kamila Valieva (Photo from the Olympic Channel)

The main event of the first day at the Moscow stage of the Cup of Russia series was the ladies’ short program event. Two young skaters from Khrustalny with great artistry lead the way.

Kamila Valieva was the final skater of the day. Eteri Tutberidze’s student began her performance with a triple flip and then a double axel. Skating to music by Olympic gold medalist Eric Radford, Valieva landed a triple Lutz-triple toe loop at the end of her short program. Great extensions and top-notch artistry to the choreography by Daniil Gleikhengauz earn Valieva a standing ovation and a score of 85.10 points.

Silver medalist at last season’s World Junior Championship, Daria Usacheva began her program with a clean double axel and a triple Lutz. The 14-year-old landed a triple flip-triple toe loop combination in the second half of the performance and showcased great flexibility and musicality for a high total score of 80.39 points.

Making her season debut with Evgeny Plushenko by her side, two-time World Junior champion Alexandra Trusova attempted a triple axel at the beginning of her program – she managed to complete the proper amount of rotations and stayed upright on the landing. A successful triple flip and triple Lutz-triple toe loop combination, plus greatly improved artistry gave her a score of 75.77 points.

Third after the short program and second overall at the first stage of the Cup of Russia series last month, CSKA’s Anna Frolova delivered another clean skate in Moscow. The 15-year-old performed an artistic program to music from the film Matilda and landed all of her jumping attempts, including a successful triple flip-triple toe loop combination towards the end of the program to earn a total score of 68.76 points.

Stanislava Konstantinova demonstrated good improvement and a return to competitive shape. The 20-year-old, representing Angels of Plushenko and training under Alexander Volkov this season, successfully landed a triple-triple combination, her double axel attempt, and a triple flip towards the end of the performance. She received a score of 67.10 points.

16-year-old Valeria Shulskaya opened her short program performance with a triple flip-triple toe loop combination and a successful double axel but made an error on her final triple Lutz attempt. The judges gave her a score of 58.97 points.

Seventh at the first stage of the Cup of Russia series in Syzran, Arina Onishchenko began her short program with a successful triple-triple combination and a double axel. A triple Lutz at the end raised her scored from the previous competition (note – Onishchenko was seventh after the short program with 55.01 points at the first stage), earning a total score of 57.56 points.

Maria Talalaykina was fourth after the short program in the first stage of the Cup of Russia series but had a tougher outing today. She landed her double axel and a triple-double combination but fell on a triple Lutz. The 18-year-old received a short program score of 56.72 points.

Anna Sidorova, who trains at the Konek Tchaikovskaia branch of Sambo-70, opened her program with a triple Lutz-triple toe loop combination and later landed a triple flip and a double axel. The skater performed her best to earn a score of 54.67 points.

Vita Kareva, from Omsk Oblast, opened the ladies’ event. She spent a while training in pairs’ skating before transferring to singles; a positive start but all in all a shaky and inexperienced performance earned her a total short program score of 47.38 points.

17-year-old Alina Zabora started her performance with a good triple Salchow-double toe loop combination but made mistakes on the following triple loop and double axel attempts. The athlete from Krasnodar Krai earned a total score of 44.60 points.

Results after the short program:

  1. Kamila Valieva – 85.10
  2. Daria Usacheva – 80.39
  3. Alexandra Trusova – 75.77
  4. Anna Frolova – 68.76
  5. Stanislava Konstantinova – 67.10
  6. Valeria Shulskaya – 58.97
  7. Arina Onishchenko – 57.56
  8. Maria Talalaykina – 56.72
  9. Anna Sidorova – 54.67
  10. Vita Kareva – 47.38
  11. Alina Zabora – 44.60

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