I know this thread is supposed to be about 1996 Worlds, which I already weighed in on by saying I picked Chen, but your post made me go back and watch the top 3 skaters, for the 2002 Worlds: Slutskaya, Kwan and Suguri. I feel like I'm "out of the loop" in terms of my pick because I liked Fumi Suguri's LP performance the best. I thought Irina had better skating skills such as speed and edge control and she was actually rather elegant (from the knees down), her jumps were bigger and to me had more beautifully tight symmetry and the 2 Biellmann spins put her ahead of Michelle for me who was more graceful with her body movements and who held her spirals better, but she was behind and the freeskate only counted for 50 percent. As for Fumie, she controlled her own destiny since she was a close 2nd going into the free, and I thought she had the right balance of elegance, energy and a touch of profound melancholy that suited the music. Her jumps were aesthetically pleasing in the tightness of the spiral, I liked the sincerity of her artistry the best and she was the most emotionally compelling for me. I couldn't understand the German announcers, so I am not sure of all the jumps she did. I know she had a beautiful lutz and you could tell the announcers were really impressed with her overall. I guess she lost in technical because of having no Biellmann, for example, but why couldn't she at least be placed ahead of Kwan since she was ahead of her going in to the freeskate? Answer below. Thanks for the information below DannyCurry. Too bad Fumie didn't do that 6th triple like Michelle and Irina. I wonder why she didn't try for it. I just figured out it's the ballet quality to her skating that compelled me in that performance and her long drawn out extensions punctuated with rapid runs. It has a dynamic quality that fits the capricious mood of the music.