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Laura Lepisto: the most accomplished Finnish singles figure skater
Laura Lepisto: a skater with honest skating
Laura Lepisto, born in 1988, is a Finnish skater who won bronze in the 2010 Worlds and won the title in the 2009 European Championships, and a two -time Finnish champion.
Due to injuries Lepisto retired in 2012.
Lepisto's skating is characterized by a mirror like clarity and transparency.
Lepsito, though not a skater of high level in polishing, is a skater whose skating betrays almost no rusts.
Even top skaters are not free from bad habits in their skating,
For instance, Mao Asada is a world-class skater whose capacity is big enough to compete with Kim, but Asada's skating is full with bits and odds.
In that regard, Lepisto is a very desirable skater.
Laura Lepisto in 2010
Lepisto, the European champion
Lepisto's skating in the above appears straightforward, direct and even accurate at times.
While Lepisto is not yet masterfully polished like Yuna Kim, she has developed her own charms; Lepisto's skating is featured with speed and clear edge throughout the program.
I'd say Lepisto is a skater whose skating is honest. Those who skate like Lepisto lack of elaborated tapestries but their skating is more definitive than others' and often appear healthy.
I give +2 to her first jump. But the rest jumps are -2 to -3. A couple of triples are doubled.
She won't have +GOE for jump in general, but her management of the program is acceptable.
My speculated score is about 100-105.
How do you grade Lepisto's free above?
Laura Lepisto: the most successful Finnish singles figure skater
Finland prides itself on its historic affinity to figure skating.
The most famous Finnish figure skaters are perhaps pair skaters Ludovika and Walter Jakobsson.
They are three-time World champion and three-time Worlds silver medalist and won gold in the 1920 Olympics and silver in the 1924 Olympics.
Another pair is ice dancers Susanna Rahkamo and Petri Kokko who won bronze in the 1993 European Championships and the 1994 Worlds. The pair became the European Champion in 1995, and won silver at Worlds.
Laura Lepisto in 2010
I like Lepisto's triple triple, perhaps second to Yuna Kim's.
This may be unnecessarily detail oriented, but there is an optimized technique to do triple triple, efficient and compatible with aesthetics.
Although Carolina Kostner is a bit more polished than Lepisto in general, Lepisto's triple-triple is more desirable than Kostner's in jump quality.
I may be biased due to Kostner's body type in favor of Lepisto. Even then, Lepisto's skating is, I think, simpler and cleaner in terms of execution.
In this program, I can give Lepisto +2 for her first jump, +1 for second, and -3 for double axel. I will give + GOE for her spins.
My score for her short is 60.
How do you grade Lepisto's short?
What do you think main merit of Lepisto's skating?
Laura Lepisto in 2009
Accuracy vs. Proficiency
In this program Lepisto lost too many points on jumps while her spins are in good quality.
She doubles first triple combo, then lands second and third jumps so poorly as to earn -3 for both.
As a matter of fact, Lepisto's jump style is too honest to get around. It sounds weird, but that's why Lepisto in competition easily loses points.
That means there are skaters who get away with their less than perfect technique. And Lepisto for that matter deserves commendation.
For example, Mao Asada's jumping technique is still much desired. That is, categorically, Asada's jump quality is by default on border line of -GOE and technical cheating more often than not.
I rarely give +GOE to Asada's jump even when she landed it. If you compare Lepisto's jumping technique and Asada's, Asada is superior to Lepisto in polishing and consistency, yet Lepisto is often better in accuracy.
Now you may wonder if polishing or being proficient in skating can mean being less accurate. In other words, there is something illusive in figure skating, which has nothing to do with aesthetics.
This is not tedious nitpicking, however. That indicates how difficult it is for skaters to maintain jump consistency and even if you are able to accomplish polishing based on consistency, your skating can still be depleted.
Therefore accuracy and proficiency cannot be separated in figure skating, because they eventually decide the quality of aesthetics after all.