by Laura Flagg
The senior events of the competition started Thursday with the free dance. Caitlin Mallory and Brent Holdburg won in a very close, very tough competition. This is the beginning of the season for these teams, and from what was done today, they all look to have a promising season.
Elizabeth Miosi and Dmitry Ponomarev led off the event with a fun program, and performed with great energy. The whole performance was powerful and polished. Despite being their first senior performance, they did not look a bit out of place.
Trina Pratt and Todd Gilles skated next doing a passionate performance to Aerosmith’s “Dream On.” Despite a few tiny bobbles, they showed that they will fit right in on the senior Grand Prix circuit this fall, as they displayed great smoothness and executed lots of very difficult moves.
Erika Hoffmann and Alexander Boeglin skated third, doing a fun program to rock and roll music. Their program featured many nice elements, especially the first lift in which he went onto one foot.
Mallory and Holdburg, the eventual winners of this event, skated next. Their program to “Dark Eyes” was choregraphed by former Olympic champion Marina Klimova and was beautiful, featuring loads of goregeous moves that Mallory and Holdburg showed off to perfrection.
Emma Cyders and Ikaika Young were the first team to go from the second group. Their program had many interesting elements, particularly a low lift done with no hands.
Charlotte Maxwell and Nick Traxler started their sophomore season with a bang doing a program that pretty much redifined the word “fun.” They used songs including “A-B-C” and “Respect.” They had lots of energy and great lifts.
Kate Slattery and Chuen-Gun Lee did the Phantom of the Opera program that they were planning on using before at last season’s National Championships before a serious collision during the original dance warm-up prevented them from finishing the event. Their performance was filled with passion, and they skated with good speed.
Katherine Copely and Deividas Stagniunas, a new team who will be skating for Lithuania in the upcoming season, skated a fun Russian folk music program. Despite a minor stumble from her on the twizzles, most of their elements were extremely solid and their interpretation brought the music to life.
Mimi Whetstone and Chris Obzansky, another new team, closed out the event. They had a smooth performance that featured great lifts.