ALSO ON SLAM!
Thursday, March 30, 2000
Stojko wins silver
"I want this to sink in and feel how I feel about what I want to do," Stojko said after the medals ceremony Thursday. "It's not just about placements.
"Do I still want to keep pushing this? Do I still want to do more? If yes, then I'll go (to another world meet). If not, I'll stay back and do something else.
"I'm giving myself that option."
Yagudin became the first skater to win three straight men's titles since Canadian Kurt Browning's 1989-91 reign. Browning won gold again in 1993, and Yagudin will go for a fourth next year in Vancouver. The Russian is only 20.
American Michael Weiss, 23, repeated as bronze medallist. Evgeni Plushenko of Russia, second last year, slipped to fourth this time.
Yagudin won $50,000 US, compared to $33,000 for Stojko and $22,000 for Weiss.
Eight quadruple jumps, including two each by Yagudin and American Tim Goebel, were landed in the men's free-skating final, bringing to an incredible 20 the total number landed during the three phases of the competition.
Stojko, 28, had finished fourth last year. He hadn't been on the podium since 1997, when he won his third world title in Lausanne, Switzerland. Now he's got a sixth world championship medal, a second silver -- one to place beside his two silver Olympic medals.
"No. 2 in the world," he said when asked to describe the high level of satisfaction he got from this one. "There was a lot of doubt from people, criticisms, but this totally proves that no matter how old you are in this sport you can make it work.
"It's not just about quads. It's about fighting all the way through, and I did. It feels great."
After the short program Tuesday, the standings showed Yagudin, Plushenko, Weiss and Stojko in that order.
Stojko, of Richmond Hill, Ont., was the first man on the ice in the last group of six. He fell on his quad attempt.
"When you miss the first jump like that, it knocks the wind out of you," he said. "I dug deep and said, 'I'm going to continue. I'm not going to give up."'
He doubled out the back end of a planned triple-triple jump combo. But he stuck a second triple-triple in later on, landing eight triples in all.
Weiss stumbled on his quad landing and made two other errors. The judges had Stojko ahead of him.
Yagudin fell on a triple Lutz. Despite landing the two quads, and six triples, his performance was sub-par for him. He crossed himself at centre ice after stopping. He put a sad face on coach Tatania Tarasova's shoulder in the kiss-and-cry area. He thought he'd blown it. The judges put him first, ahead of Stojko, but Plushenko was yet to skate, and Plushenko had the ability to snatch the gold medal.
The 17-year-old whiz waffled. He missed an early jump combo and began ad-libbing his program. He fell on his quad. He fell right off the podium.
"Actually, I didn't do my best, but it was enough to win a third title," said a relieved Yagudin.
Ben Ferreira of Edmonton finished 19th in his worlds debut.
Earlier in the day, Marie-France Dubreuil of Ste-Catharine, Que., and Patrice Lauzon of Boisbriand, Que., remained 11th after the original ice dance, and Megan Wing and Aaron Lowe of Vancouver stayed in 16th spot. Italians Barbara Fusar Poli and Maurizio Margaglio were first going into the free dance today.
Jennifer Robinson of Windsor, Ont., skates her short program in women's singles today after placing sixth in the first of two qualifying groups Wednesday.
Stojko sat backstage with coach-choreographer Uschi Keszler after skating, pondering the possibility he'd be out of the medals again. Then the drama unfolded.
"I think the reason why people watch figure skating is that you never know what's going to happen," he said. "That's going to continue to drive interest in the sport."
Whatever decision he makes "in three or four months," he won't be swayed either way by the age factor.
"Some of the best athletes in the world, their best work is when they're past 30," he said.
Yagudin wants him to stick around. He said he'd compete against Plushenko a million more times, then added: "I hope Elvis will be with us."
Canadian judge Jane Garden raised some eyebrows when she marked Plushenko ahead of Stojko, who edged Weiss on a 6-3 split of the nine-member panel.
Ferreira landed eight triples, which would have put him much higher in the final standings had he not had the handicap of skating in the first group.
He had been in 21st place after the short program. The absence of a quad in his repertoire held him back. He got from 4.7 to 5.1 for technical content and from 4.5 to 5.2 for artistry.
"The judges had to save marks for the ones coming up," coach Jan Ullmark. "If he'd have skated with that program in the second or third group, he would have had 5.3s and 5.4s."
Ferreira, 20, treated the week as a learning experience.
"I'm an unknown to the judges so I understand the way it works," he said. "I definitely want to come back to another world championship.
"I'll go home and work hard, and develop the quad because it's definitely something that's needed now. I'm still learning. It's been a great experience."
ResultsResults Thursday of the World Figure Skating Championships at the Palais des Exposititions:
After original dance
(Top 24 advance to free dance)
1. Barbara Fusar-Poli and Maurizio Margaglio, Italy, 1.4 factored placings
2. Marina Anissina and Gwendal Peizerat, France, 1.6
3. Irina Lobacheva and Ilya Averbukh, Russia, 3.0
4. Margarita Drobiazko and Povilas Vanagas, Lithuania, 4.0
5. Galit Chait and Sergei Sakhnovsky, Israel, 5.4
6. Kati Winkler and Rene Lohse, Germany, 5.6
7. Elena Grushina and Ruslan Goncharov, Ukraine, 7.0
8. Naomi Lang and Peter Tchernyshev, United States, 8.8
9. Albena Denkova and Maxim Staviski, Bulgaria, 9.0
10. Sylwia Nowak and Sebastian Kolasinski, Poland, 9.4
11. Marie-France Dubreuil and Patrice Lauzon, Canada, 10.8
12. Isabelle Delobel ad Olivier Schoenfelder, France, 12.0
13. Jamie Silverstein and Justin Pekarek, United States, 13.4
14. Anna Semenovich and Roman Kostomarov, Russia, 13.6
15. Eliane Hugentobler and Daniel Hugentobler, Switzerland, 15.2
16. Megan Wing and Aaron Lowe, Canada, 16.0
17. Federica Faiella and Luciano Milo, Italy, 17.0
18. Natasha Romaniuta and Daniel Barantsev, Russia, 17.8
19. Alexandra Kauc and Filip Bernadowski, Poland, 19.0
20. Nakako Tsuzuki and Rinat Farkhoutdinov, Japan, 20.2
21. Stephanie Rauer and Thomas Rauer, Germany, 20.8
22. Zita Gebora and Andras Visontai, Hungary, 23.0
23. Julie Keeble and Lucas Zalewski, Britain, 23.2
24. Zhang Weina and Cao Xianming, China, 23.4
25. Angelika Fuhring and Bruno Ellinger, Austria, 25.0
26. Katarina Kovalova and David Szurman, Czech Republic, 25.4
27. Alissa de Carbonnel and Alexander Malkov, Belarus, 27.4
28. Zuzana Durkovska and Marian Mesaros, Slovakia, 27.6
29. Anna Mosenkova and Sergey Sychov, Estonia, 29.4
30. Tiffany Hyden and Vazgen Azrojan, Armenia, 29.6
1. Alexei Yagudin, Russia, 2.0 factored placings.
2. Elvis Stojko, Canada, 5.4
3. Michael Weiss, United States, 5.6
4. Yevgeney Plushchenko, Russia, 6.0
5. Li Chiengjiang, China, 12.0
6. Alexander Abt, Russia, 15.6
7. Stanick Jeannette, France, 16.0
8. Guo Zhengxin, China, 16.0
9. Vincent Restencourt, France, 16.4.
10. Takeshi Honda, Japan, 17.2
11. Tim Goebel, United States, 17.4.
12. Anthony Liu, Australia, 20.4.
13. Vitali Danilchenko, Ukraine, 20.6.
14. Stefan Lindemann, Germany, 22.4.
15. Dmitri Dmitrenko, Ukraine, 27.2.
16. Andres Vlascenko, Germany, 28.0.
17. Roman Skorniakov, Uzbekistan, 31.8.
18. Ivan Dinev, Bulgaria, 32.0.
19. Ben Ferreira, Canada, 34.4.
20. Michael Tllsen, Denmark, 34.4
21. Markus Leminen, Finland, 40.0
22. Patrick Meier, Switzerland, 40.2
23. Sergei Rylov, Azerbaijan, 40.6
24. Konstantin Kostin, Latvia, 41.6.
1. Yagudin, 1.0 factored placings
2. Stojko, 2.0
3. Weiss, 3.0
4. Plushchenko, 4.0
5. Honda, 5.0
6. Li, 6.0
7. Restenvcourt, 7.0
8. Jeannette, 8.0
9. Guo, 9.0
10. Goebel, 10.0
11. Danilchenko, 11.0
12. Abt, 12.0
13. Lindemann, 13.0
14. Liu, 14.0
15. Dmitrenko, 15.0
16. Vlascenko, 16.0
17. Skorniakov, 17,0
18. Ferreira, 18.0
19. Tylssen, 19.0
20. Dinev, 20.0
21. Rylov, 21.0
22. Leminen, 22.0
23. Kostin, 23. 0
24. Meier, 24.0