Friday, September 25, 2009

Lambiel crushes competition at Nebelhorn

Two-time world champion Stéphane Lambiel of Switzerland celebrated his return to competitive skating by winning the gold medal at the Nebelhorn Trophy by 26 points over his nearest rival. Lambiel, who was first in the short program, scored 154.91 points in the free skate for 232.36 points overall.

Lambiel, skating to "Otono Porteno" by Astor Piazzola, landed a quad toe-double toe-double toe and triple flip-triple toe combinations, a triple flip, triple loop, triple Salchow and two double Axels, but he popped his triple Lutz.

"I'm very excited to be back competing," Lambiel said. "This was my first competition in 18 months, so I really felt the pressure. But the 18 months off helped me to become a better skater and a better person."

"I was happy with my performance although I would have liked to have skated clean and done a triple Axel," Lambiel continued. "I was touched to see so many fans and wanted to skate well for them as well as myself."

"This was the first time I competed in September since I was a junior," Lambiel added. "It was a little bit soon, but the win is a bonus for the rest of the season. Now that I have qualified my country for the Olympics, I just have to make sure I qualify myself."

Russia's Ivan Tretiakov skated to the motion picture soundtrack of Charade and garnered 139.18 points in the free skate, placing him second. His combined total of 206.23 points jumped Tretiakov, who was fifth in the short program, over Michal Brezina to win the silver medal.

"This was my first medal at a major international," Tretiakov said. "Last year I came here, but finished really low, so I did not think I would be in the top five."

Tretiakov opened with a quad Salchow and then completed a double and triple Axel, a triple loop and triple Lutz, and triple flip-triple toe and triple flip-double toe-double toe combinations.

"It was the first time I landed the quad in competition," Tretiakov noted. "I missed it in my warm up, and my coach told me to play safe but I insisted on doing it."

Full article.

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