Thursday, December 31, 2009

Sebestyen nets record ninth Hungarian title

The Hungarian Figure Skating Championships took place over the weekend in Budapest, Hungary, with the most dominant Hungarian ladies’ skater in the past decade, Julia Sebestyen, winning her ninth title by over 60 points. Hungary will be represented in the Vancouver Olympics by one skater in the ladies’ competition and one ice dance team. Both spots were earned at Nebelhorn Trophy in September.

Sebestyen skated a solid free skate with five triples, and she seems to be in the best shape she has been in years. The 2004 European champion won her first Grand Prix medal since 2006 earlier this season at Skate America. Sebestyen’s gold marked her 13th overall medal at the Hungarian championships, with her first medal dating back to 1995. She will be competing in her fourth consecutive Olympics in February. Katherine Hadford, who competed for the United States for a number of years, picked up her second Hungarian silver medal and fifth medal overall.

In the men’s event, Marton Marko bested three-time and defending champion Tigran Vardanjan to win his first Hungarian title. In pairs, Viktoria Hacht and Kristof Trefil were the only competitors, taking their first title.

The ice dance competition featured the promising up and coming team of Nora Hoffmann and Maxim Zavozin, who won their second Hungarian title. This marks Hoffman’s seventh gold overall at the Hungarian championships. Zavozin competed for the United States and was the World junior champion in 2005 with former partner Morgan Matthews. Hoffmann and Zavozin will join Sebestyen on the Hungarian Olympic team.

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