Clara Peters and Vivian Murphy, the 2010 Irish Ladies and Men’s Ice Skating
Champions achieved important milestones at the recent Cup of Nice, French
Figure Skating International, 13th -17th October. The standard of ice skating was
truly outstanding as the event attracted many of the skating world's brightest up
and coming stars, with a strong showing of Russian skaters. This was an
important international as many skaters are seeking to return to Nice for the ISU
World Figure Skating Championships in 2012 and future qualification for the
Sochi Olympics in 2014. The promising start made by the Irish duo was therefore
all the more creditable.
At this event a cut was made after the short programme and only the top 24
skaters would progress to the Free Programme. Changes in ISU regulations for
Championship Competition now demand competitors have to obtain a minimum
technical score at an International ISU event thus making the competition for the
top 24 places was fierce. Skaters had travelled from as far afield as Japan,
Mexico and South America as well as across Europe in the hope of making the
minimum technical score in order to qualify to compete at the World
Championships in Japan in March 2011. For many there are few opportunities
left in the international skating calendar to make the ISU minimum technical
score. The pressure was intense and the air crackled with the tension.
Audiences were riveted and the strong Irish contingent were holding their breath.
Peters, put in a well skated but flawed Short programme, missing 2 jump
elements. Peter’s execution of the remaining elements, spins and step were
strong enough to ensure she made the cut for the free programme the following
day. Peters started her new season with a free programme allowing her to
express her love of the sport. She performed a strong programme wooing the
audience with her artistry and musicality. She landed every jump she attempted
and performed difficult 3 jump combinations with ease. Every note of the music
was interpreted and expressed the emotion of the moment. The audience were
emotionally involved in the performance: this was a truly great moment for Irish
skating. The scores went up and Clara had exceeded all expectations.
Her Long programme score comfortable exceeded the minimum technical score
require securing Peters qualification to ISU World Championships in Japan and
the European Championships in Switzerland, 2011. Peters has now returned to
her training base in the USA, to begin the preparations for the European
Championships in Switzerland in January 2011.
This was Murphy’s first Senior International, having only just moved to this level
in September. Murphy’s Short programme include Double Axel and Triple
Salchow for which he was awarded 70% of its total value, making him the Irish
Mens skater to land these jumps in competition. Murphy placed 26th in the event.
Following Murphy’s success last season at Junior level, Murphy will now draw on
this experience and that of his pervious achievements in preparation for further
Internationals next year in his bid to achieve the minimum technical scores for
qualification for future World Championships, including Nice in 2012.