Recap: 2023 World Junior Championships

by Anne Calder | Images by Robin Ritoss

The 2023 World Junior Determine Skating Championships protocols at the moment are recorded within the ISU historical past books. The WinSport Occasion Centre in Calgary, Alberta Canada hosted the forty seventh competitors, February 27 – March 5.

The Rhythm Dance roster started with 30 groups representing 22 international locations. On the finish of the session, twenty groups superior to the Free Dance.

Prior to every Press Convention, small medals had been awarded by the Referee to the highest three groups in every section (RD/FD). Two ice dance groups headed dwelling with three medals per accomplice – CZE and KOR. A medal ceremony was additionally held on the ice on the conclusion of the competitors adopted by the taking part in of the gold medalists’ nationwide anthem.

Historical past was made on the 2023 occasion when CZE and KOR medaled for the primary time on the World Junior Championships.

Rhythm Dance

On the finish of the Rhythm Dance, the ultimate group for the Free Dance was posted: Katerina Mrazkova & Daniel Mrazek (CZE), Hannah Lim & Ye Quan (KOR), Phebe Bekker & James Hernandez (GBR), Nadiia Bashynska & Peter Beaumont (CAN) and Celina Fradji & Jean-Hans Fourneaux (FRA).

Mrazkova & Mrazek had been the one crew to earn an ideal (YYYY / YYYY) for his or her eight Argentine Tango key factors. The rotational raise and his twizzle additionally earned degree 4. Dancing Tango to “A Evaristo” and Paso Doble to “Espana Cani”,  the siblings earned a 71.19 rating, falling in need of their private greatest by a skinny .68 factors.

“We all know that we are able to do higher, however we did a form of protected program, which is nice,” Mrazkova famous. “We simply needed to do what we had been working towards and to take pleasure in this system, and that’s it.”

Lim & Quan danced a fast-paced Milonga to “Primavera Portena”. The twizzles, second Argentine Tango sample, rotational raise  and each midline step sequences earned degree 4. The private greatest 71.08 rating topped their current Junior Grand Prix Closing rating by nearly seven factors.

“I’m comfortable that the onerous work we put into our technical components – as an illustration the step sequence [both level 4] and sample dance – paid off,” Quan mentioned. ”We’re actually comfortable we bought our ranges in the present day. We did need to beat our private rating.”

Bekker & Hernandez scored a private greatest 68.89 with Flamenco and Tango alternatives by Roni Benise. The duo earned degree 4 for the rotational raise, second Argentine Tango sample, her midline step and his twizzle,

“For such an intense program, it’s really a lot enjoyable to skate,” Hernandez mentioned.  “We have now these little moments scattered by the place we catch every others’ eyes – sure it’s intense – however we get vitality from one another in these moments. At present we discovered these moments; we related. We had a good time from starting to finish. We’re comfortable.”

Bashynska & Beaumont (CAN) had been fourth. Their Spanish Waltz efficiency to “Espana” and the “Tango Grande” from The Nice Gatsby obtained a private greatest 68.00 rating. The opening midline sequence footwork and twizzles earned degree 4 as did the closing rotational raise. The Argentine Tango patterns obtained ranges 1 and a pair of. The Junior Grand Prix Closing gold medalists had been nonetheless solely lower than some extent out of podium vary. 

This isnt a setback,’’ Bashynska mentioned. ’Maybe it is perhaps somewhat profit for us. It should put much less stress on us for the free dance which is our stronger efficiency. We plan to return again tomorrow (Saturday).’’                                                 

Fradji & Fourneaux (FRA) scored a private greatest 65.81 for his or her Tango efficiency to Gringo Nr.1 by Tango for 3, organized by Hugo Chouinard. The twizzles, straight line raise and second Argentine Tango sample had been degree 4. Each midline step sequences had been degree 3.

Free Dance

The panel of judges was launched. The order and a few people had been totally different from the Rhythm Dance. The primary group of athletes was introduced. The groups competed in reverse order of their Rhythm Dance standing. 

Mrazkova & Mrazek  danced a robust efficiency to “Surrounded” and “The Coronary heart of a King” from The Man within the Iron Masks soundtrack and earned the primary Junior World title and medal for the Czech Republic. The twizzles, rotational raise and dance spin had been degree 4; the round and one foot step plus curve raise earned degree 3. Each the 106.17 section and complete 177.36 had been private greatest scores. 

“The rhythm dance for us was not so nice as a result of we had been nervous; we had been scared to do a mistake,” Mrazek mentioned. “We tried to be extra chilled within the free dance, and I feel we did it higher in the present day.” 

Lim & Quan  earned the primary Korean ice dance medal at Junior Worlds with a haunting interpretation of Danse Macabre – Dance of Loss of life. The lifts, dance spin and her twizzle earned degree 4. The opposite components had been degree 3. The 103.31 section and 174.39 complete had been private greatest scores. 

“We actually really feel comfortable about what we had in the present day. For me, it hasn’t sunk in but,” Quan mentioned. “We felt humorous dancing in entrance of a giant crowd like this.”

Bashynska & Beaumont (CAN) scored 101.13 for his or her charming interpretation of  “Anna’s Theme” from The Purple Violin by John Corigliano and Elegie: O doux Printemps d’autrefois by Jules Massenet. Their lifts, dance spin and her twizzle had been degree 4; the diagonal step and his twizzle earned degree 3. The Canadian Junior Champions slipped into third place by a .06 margin and took dwelling their second consecutive Junior World bronze medal.

On the Press Convention, Bashynska applauded all of the medalists plus the British crew. “I’m clearly very comfortable to finish up on the rostrum, and I’m very pleased with ourselves and of everyone else right here. Additionally to Phebe and James [who narrowly finished fourth behind the Canadians and off the podium]. It’s solely proper to present everyone credit score for a way far all of us got here. It’s been an extended and onerous season for all of us.”

Bekker & Hernandez (GBR) danced a dramatic presentation of Vivaldi’s 4 Seasons that earned degree 4 twizzles, lifts, and dance spin. On the Combined Zone, Hernandez referenced Bekker’s current sickness and his father’s demise two weeks in the past. He famous that beneath the circumstances, they had been extremely pleased with what they had been capable of do. The private greatest 100.18 section and 169.07 complete scores assured the British Junior Champions fourth place.

Leah Neset & Artem Markelov (USA) vaulted from seventh to fifth with an exhilarating and highly effective dance to Pirates of Caribbean. The twizzles, dance spin, and lifts earned degree 4. The USA Junior Champions’ Rhythm Dance (64.01), Free Dance (98.58) and Whole (162,59) had been all private greatest scores.

Ice Chips

The rostrum groups will all be transferring as much as the senior ranks subsequent season. They shared their expectations.

  • Katerina Mrazkova: “In fact sooner or later we need to be the very best. We don’t know the way it’s going to be subsequent season, so we’ll work onerous like final yr. We are going to attempt to enhance all the pieces – our unhealthy sides and our good sides.”
  • Daniel Mrazek: “We don’t have any expectations. It’s a totally new class for us.”
  • Hannah Lim: “We’re a bit nervous as a result of we have now a variety of examples at our faculty (I.AM), and they’re all actually superb senior skaters.  I’m glad they’re there so we are able to look as much as them. I’m nervous, but in addition very excited.”
  • Nadiia Bashynska: “We don’t actually have a selection. We have now to maneuver up. We’re very excited and looking out ahead to exhibiting a brand new aspect of ourselves, clearly stepping up our recreation and dealing onerous.”
  • Peter Beaumont: “Final yr we had been form of debating about it, however I’m glad that we stayed junior one other yr. Now it feels proper for us to maneuver up. I’m trying ahead to a little bit of Samba and ‘80s’ (music for senior RD) subsequent yr.”

Choreographic Aspect Highest Whole Scores:

  • Choreographic Character Step Sequence: Leah Neset & Artem Markelov (USA) – 3.95
  • Choreographic Sliding Motion: Nadiia Bashynska & Peter Beaumont (CAN) – 3.83

World Junior Championship Medalists Teaching at 2023 World Junior Championships:

  • Marie-France Dubreuil & Bruno Yvars (CAN) 1990 (bronze)
  • Elena Khaliavina Dostatni & Maxim Shabalin (RUS) 2001 (bronze), 2002 (silver)
  • Sylwia Nowak & Sebastian Kolasiński (POL) 1993 (silver), 1994 (gold)
  • Tatiana Gladkova & Igor Shpilband (USSR) 1982 (silver), 1983 (gold)
  • Anastasia Gorshkova & Ilia Tkachenko (RUS) 2005 (bronze)

The 2024 World Junior Championships will probably be held in Taipei Metropolis, Taiwan. The allotments per nation:

3 – Canada, Czech Republic, United States
2 – Cyprus, France, Nice Britain, Korea
1 – All different ISU international locations