MINSK: Russia’s Olympic champion Alina Zagitova seized the lead after the women’s short programme on the opening day of the European figure skating championships in Minsk on Wednesday.
The 16-year-old defending European champion earned 75.00 points for a solid rendition of her “The Phantom of the Opera” by Andrew Lloyd Webber routine at the 15,000-seat ice arena.“I was all geared up for a flawless performance here,” Zagitova, who missed out adding a world title to her Olympics crown when only fifth in Milan last March, told Russian TV.
“I tried hard to keep my emotions under full control and it worked well.“Of course there were some slight mistakes but it didn’t affect seriously my mark today. Now I need to focus on my free skating to show my best on Friday.”
Another Russian, Sofia Samodurova, earned her personal best mark of 72.88 points for her short programme “Nyah” by Hans Zimmer (from Mission Impossible-2 soundtrack) to lie second. Alexia Paganini of Switzerland is third on 65.64. The pairs’ short programme will continue the Wednesday’s schedule. The best 24 skaters advance to the free skating final on Friday.
European figure skating championships results Women
1. Alina Zagitova (RUS) 75.00pts, 2. Sofia Samodurova (RUS) 72.88, 3. Alexia Paganini (SUI) 65.64, 4. Viveca Lindfors (FIN) 65.61, 5. Nicole Rajicova (SVK) 64.08, 6. Laurine Lecavelier (FRA) 63.29, 7. Ekaterina Ryabova (AZE) 59.95, 8. Mae Berenice Meite (FRA) 58.95, 9. Alexandra Feigin (BUL) 58.80, 10. Emmi Peltonen (FIN) 58.06, 11. Stanislava Konstantinova (RUS) 56.76, 12. Eliska Brezinova (CZE) 55.85, 13. Ivett Toth (HUN) 54.90, 14. Julia Sauter (ROM) 54.29, 15. Dasa Grm (SLO) 53.50, 16. Lucrezia Gennaro (ITA) 52.91, 17. Anita Ostlund (SWE) 52.76, 18. Yasmina Kimiko Yamada (SUI) 51.21, 19. Nicole Schott (GER) 50.68, 20. Pernille Sorensen (DEN) 50.59, 21. Anastasiya Galustyan (ARM) 48.38, 22. Natasha McKay (GBR) 48.20, 23. Antonina Dubinina (SRB) 47.20, 24. Nathalie Weinzierl (GER) 46.09.