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For those you may have missed Thursday’s Ladies Free Skate Program in Sochi, there were many great performances, but Russia’s Adelina Sotnikova won the gold.
In a strange turn of events, Sotnikova grabbed the gold due to her level of difficulty in her performance. Her absence front the team skating event also helped contribute to her win.
“It helped a lot that I did not participate in the team event,” Sotnikova told USA Today. “I got really angry and decided I WILL get a medal in the individual event. This was my goal and I made it.”.
The 5.0 gap between Sotnikova and Korea’s Yuna Kim made some heads spin. While the Russian skater may have had home team advantage, it boiled down to the numbers. In overall technical difficulty, Sotnikova’s performance was ranked higher, outweighing Korea’s Yuna Kim and Italy’s Carolina Kostner.
Overall, Korea’s Yuna Kim received the silver medal with her score of 69.96 while Sotnikova has a score of 75.54 and placed Italy’s Carolina Kostner with a bronze.
Sotnikova’s performance involved a combination of a triple lutz triple toe combo as well as double axel triple toe. Kim only did the triple lutz toe combination and Kostner only did the double axel triple toe. What also carried Sotnikova to the top was her seven triple jumps and four in combination.
USA Today also reported that Sotnikova was cheated out of performing in the team event when Russia’s golden child, 15-year-old Julia Lipnitskaia, placed in both the team competition and individuals. “I really wanted to participate in the team competition because I understood that we would win a medal because our team is so strong,” Sotnikova told USA Today. “When I found out I was not in the team, I felt so sorry and I felt offended. I felt so cheated in a way.”
Sotnikova was a favorite to win the games and was pushed aside when Julia Lipnitskaia came up, but with Sotnikova’s persistence to be in the spotlight helped her make it to the top.
“Maybe it is all for the best that I didn’t compete in the team competition and it was an advantage for me that it made me so mad to win the gold medal,” she said.
Colleen Moriaty is a staff writer and secretary for The Hub she may be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @ColleenMoriaty.