Sinitsina and Katsalapov withdraw during free dance performance

Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov (AP Photo/Julie Jacobson)

2020 European champions Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov could not complete their free dance due to an injury at the second stage of the Cup of Russia series in Moscow. Following their withdrawal from the competition, Annabelle Morozov and Andrei Bagin took the victory.

Sinitsina and Katsalapov began their new free dance program as leaders by more than twelve points against the closest competitors. Skating to music by Michael Jackson, the couple started out smoothly but less than halfway through the program Sinitsina could not continue due to severe pain in her right knee.

Yesterday, after the rhythm dance, the couple’s coach Alexander Zhulin opened up about the possibility that Sinitsina and Katsalapov could miss the free dance altogether due to Sinitsina’s injury; however, the pair decided to attempt to push through. Still, Zhulin informed the media afterwards that the pair are planning to take part in the third stage of the Cup of Russia series in two weeks, in Sochi.

Morozov and Bagin used the leaders’ absence to the fullest. With less pressure on the couple, they completed a beautiful and technically sound program, scoring 120.97 points for the performance. Their overall sum of 198.00 points was enough for gold medals.

Ekaterina Mironova and Evgeny Ustenko were in third position after the first program. They rose a place after the free dance as well. Twelfth at last season’s Russian Nationals, Mironova and Ustenko took a step in the right direction with improvements in two consecutive performances and received a total score of 149.56 points.

The young couple of Sofia Kartashova and Ilia Karpov were the first to perform their free dance – their performance seemed raw and lacked experience; fourth after the rhythm dance, Kartashova and Karpov earned a total score of 130.15 points – which was enough for bronze medal after the leaders withdrew.

Elizaveta Pasechnik and Egor Kolosovski, who were last after the short program with a score of 40.67 points – including three deductions – withdrew from the competition before the start of the free dance.

Final results:

  1. Annabelle Morozov/Andrei Bagin – 198.00
  2. Ekaterina Mironova/Evgeny Ustenko – 149.56
  3. Sofia Kartashova/Ilia Karpov – 130.15
    WD – Victoria Sinitsina/Nikita Katsalapov (1st after rhythm dance – 89.52)
    WD – Elizaveta Pasechnik/Egor Kolosovski (5th after rhythm dance – 40.67)

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