by Anne Calder | Photo by Julia Komarova
The fifth event in the Grand Prix Series was held in Moscow, Russia from November 15-17, at the Megasport Sport Palace. Ten teams from seven countries competed for prize money and qualification for the Grand Prix Final in Torino, Italy from December 5-8.
Russians Victoria Sinitsina & Nikita Katsalapov won their second Grand Prix gold medal in two weeks with 212.15 points. Piper Gilles & Paul Poirier representing Canada scored 207.64 for silver, followed by the bronze medal Spanish team of Sara Hurtado & Kirill Khaliavin with a 185.01 score.
Natalia Kaliszek & Maksym Spodyriev of Poland with 178.70 and Lithuanians Allison Reed & Saulius Ambrulevicius with 175.43 were fourth and fifth respectively
All five teams earned Level 4 for the Sequential Twizzles, Rotational Lift, and Midline Step Sequence. However, the levels varied considerably on the Finnstep and the Pattern Dance Step Sequence.
- Sinitsina & Katsalapov – Singin’ in the Rain – FS3 (NYYY), PSt 3,3 – (86.09)
- Gilles & Poirier – Mack and Mabel – FS2 (NYNY), PSt 3,3 – (82.56)
- Hurtado & Khaliavin – Hello Dolly – FS1 (NNNY), PSt 1,2 – (72.01)
- Kaliszek & Spodyriev – Kinky Boots– FSB (NNNN), PSt 3,2 – (69.97)
- Reed & Ambrulevicius – Bandstand – FS2 (YNYN), PSt 3,3) – (69.79)
The free dance standings continued in the same order as the earlier rhythm dance. The top six teams earned level 4 Synchronized Twizzles, Lifts, and Spin and level 3, 3 for the One-Foot Step Sequences.
Sinitsina & Katsalapov scored a personal best 126.06 for the sentimental interpretation of “I Giorni” and “Songs My Mother Taught Me”. The team’s 212.15 outscored their Cup of China total from the previous week. The 30 earned points qualified them for their second straight Grand Prix Final.
Gilles & Poirier danced to Joni Mitchell’s somber tones of “Both Sides Now”. They narrowly missed overtaking the Russians’ free dance score with their 125.08 points. However, the silver medal 207.64 total earned them the necessary points to punch a ticket to their first Grand Prix Final in five years.
The Spanish team of Hurtado & Khaliavin used “Obroy” and “Puerto del Sol” for their Flamenco dance and scored 113.00 points. The Moscow based team won the bronze, their second straight Rostelecom medal, with a total 185.01 score.
Kaliszek & Spodyriev brought back their 2016-17 Dirty Dancing medley program and scored 108.73 points. The total 178.70 landed the Polish team in fourth place.
Russians Anastasia Shpilevaya & Grigory Smirnov made their Grand Prix debut with a Love Punch soundtrack medley program. Their 105.89 free dance and 172.93 total scores were personal bests. The team was fifth in the free dance and sixth over all.
Reed & Ambrulevicius earned 105.64 points with their performance to selections by Norwegian singer Aurora for a sixth place free dance. The total 175.43 score moved them back up to fifth place where they had finished in the rhythm dance.
The final Grand Prix Series event is the NHK Trophy to be held November 22-24 in Sapporo, Japan. Teams will complete for the remaining Final assignments.
- (15) Gabriella Papadakis & Guillaume Cizeron
- (13) Alexandria Stepanova & Ivan Bukin
- (11) Charlotte Guignard & Marco Fabbri / (11) Lilah Fear & Lewis Gibson