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North America Wins Japan Open

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SOOO the long-postponed Japan Open took place this weekend.  And Team North America squeaked through with the win.  It was 518.64 for the North Americans over 517.94 for Team Europe (powered by Russians) and a distant 479.57 for Team Japan.

According to Examiner, Patrick Chan won the men's portion despite three falls in his free skate.  Artur Gachinski had a fall on a quad as well, but he landed six triples and was in second behind Chan.  Japan's Takahiko Kozuka landed six triples as well but wound up behind Gachinski.  2008 world champ Jeffrey Buttle competed and landed four triples but apparently fizzled out towards the end of the program and finished fourth.  France's Florent Amodio landed a quad salchow (wow, the quad was the thing he was really missing last season so it will be interesting to see how competitive Amodio will be with a quad in his repertoire) but apparently was not so strong otherwise and came in fifth, and Daisuke Takahashi only landed three triples (sniff) to come in sixth.

Sarah Meier of Switzerland had a last-minute withdrawal on the ladies side.  Russia's Elizaveta Tuktamisheva came in first, landing six triples.  Joannie Rochette was next in second place, and Japan's Akiko Suzuki was just behind her.  Russia's Alena Leonova hit a triple/triple to come in fourth.  Sounds like Alissa Czisny had a terrible performance with underrotations and downgrades, and she still beat out reigning world champ Miki Ando. 

After hearing about the quality of the performances, I am still pretty unconvinced about the necessity of this competition.  But it's gotten itself shoehorned into the Olympics so I guess I'll have to learn to live with it!