MenÂ’s Free Program

By Helga Dobor
Photos © Helga Dobor

Moris Pfeifhofer (SUI)

How do you feel now?

I’m half happy and half sad. It wasn’t my best performance.

Ruben Blommaert (BEL)

How do you feel now?

It’s great to be here. I didn’t skate well in my free program. I’m happy to be in the twenty-four best, so it was a nice experience at the European’s.

Peter Liebers (GER)

What do you think of your free program?

I’m thrilled that it went so well! I was a little more nervous than in the short program, but I felt very strong in the warm up. I put a hand down, in the quad toe, it wasn’t really necessary, I tend to do that and it’s something I have to work on. However, I did the quad and I proved that I can do it in the competition. I paid special attention to that so that I was able to focus on the next element. My coach and my choreographer, René Lohse told me to take one element at a time, and I tried to do that, and it worked out. Skating an my first European’s was a great experience – to skate together with the top skaters. That motivates me a lot.

Clemens Brummer (GER)

How do you feel about your free program?

The performance was almost perfect. I have now been able to learn to be more consistent in competition as opposed to training. It was my first European’s and of course it was interesting to skate here, but it’s also a bit straining. I hope to be competing internationally again next year, but it’s going to be more difficult when Philip Tischendorf and Stefan Lindemann come back.

Andrei Lutai (RUS)

How do you feel now?

I’m a little bit tired, just a little bit. I tried everything, I tried triple Axel, I wanted 3axel and a quad toe but I had mistakes. And I wanted to get better placement, like last year. When I practiced before I came to Europeans, I wanted place minimum fourth or third. I don’t know what has happened to me.

When I went to the quad toeloop I had a little problem and I wanted to jump the quad, and after that the second triple-axel.

Adrian Schultheiss (SWE)

How do you feel about your free program?

This was my highest score but the performance was more or less similar to the one at Swedish Nationals.

Have you thought about getting the third spot for Sweden?

I was not thinking about that, I only thought I do what I like to do and enjoy skating. Of course it would be a nice bonus to achieve a third spot for Sweden.

Kevin van der Perren (BEL):

I missed the key element. It happens in practice as well and it’s too bad, that it happened here. I never seem to pull off the Axel in both programs on one competition. I felt great today. I did so well on the practice and warm-up.

Tomas Verner (CZE)

Do you think you have the possibility to win the gold medal now?

No, I don’t think so, it was a little bit shaky today. I didn’t do the first quad the way I wanted, also my triple Axel was pretty bad, I lost many points because of that. I had three jumps in the second half and one in the second. I started to lose power but I’ve regained it after the last jump and that saved me. And in the end when I touched on ice.. Oh, my God, that was so unfortunate!

After his win:

I’m feeling great. The main reason is that I kept fighting until the end. I hope this is not my last medal. Now I want to rest for a few days and I’ll start practicing again. For the World Championships I’ll have to improve a few things, add some elements and until the Olympics I’ll be waiting and practicing.

Stéphane Lambiel (SUI)

I am very happy with my performance, even though it was not the best. I accept that Tomas was better today. I know I only did a double Axel in the beginning, but I did a good combination after that. There were some mistakes on jumps but the program was very dynamic and I skated it with a lot of energy.

What’s happened to your triple Axel?

In the six-minute warm-up my triple Axel was great and I knew I could do it, but it didn’t happen today.

Sergei Voronov (RUS)

What do you think of your skating?

It was very hard for me to skate, mentally and physically, but it’s good that I was able to deal with it. I practically did everything I had planned together with my coach. This was the best skate of my career so far, emotionally and technically.

You skated now after Stéphane Lambiel.

He skated well and it pushed me. I wasn’t really competing with him, I admit that.

Brian Joubert (FRA)

The mistake on the double toeloop, in combination, really cost my energy. Until then I was fine but that really pulled me down. I’m third now and I was defending champion, that’s not a great score. But that’s the way it is. This season is really hard for me physically.

What was your strategy?

I decided not to do a second quad.


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