New JPN Pair: Narumi Takahashi & Ryuichi Kihara

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by NMURA, Jan 29, 2013.

  1. morqet

    morqet Active Member

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    Is there any update on Narumi's injury? Any idea if she's recovered enough to begin training properly with him? Could be crucial if they're hoping to be ready to compete at Nebelhorn to try to get the Olympic spot.
  2. Andrey aka Pushkin

    Andrey aka Pushkin Brezina's Nemesis

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  3. Akira Andrea

    Akira Andrea New Member

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    This is an article in “Mainichi Shinbun” in Japan.
    Translating to English from Japanese.

    Takahashi/Kihara pair learns from Yuka Sato coach
    January 30th, 2013 JST.
    By Tatsuya Haga

    In January 30th, Japan Skating Federation announced formally that Narumi Takahashi (21, Kinoshita Club) who had canceled the combination of Pair with Marvin Tran (Canada) forms the new combination with Ryuichi Kihara (20, Chukyo University).
    They are going to utilize U.S. Detroit as their training base and learn to both coaches of Yuka Sato and Jason Dungjen who form together the conjugal Pair as professional.

    According to HIdehito Ito, the director of Figure Skating of the said Federation, Kihara seems to have participated to the meeting for experiencing the Pair Skating which was held in Chukyo University two years before. Takahashi who coached him then seems to have been eager, saying, "I would like to form the Pair with him by all means because I felt a good fit to him", and he seems to have replied to it in this year.
    They train in Detroit for two months from February and are going to aim at getting the qualification to participate to Sochi Olympics in the final Olympic qualifying competition in September. Director Ito said, "Although there is an aspect not to find that it doesn't attempt together actually, too, we would like to make them strengthen aggressively because a pair among the Japanese was formed specially".

    The article:
    Takahashi/Kihara pair learns from Yuka Sato coach
    http://mainichi.jp/sports/news/20130131k0000m050012000c.html
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2013
  4. kirkbiggestfan

    kirkbiggestfan Well-Known Member

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    Sato/Dungjen makes a lot of sense on paper. Jason was a brilliant pair skater and a good coach. Having a Japanese coach in the US will help the process.
    They chose busy coaches though. (Alissa and Jeremy are not going to Worlds and their season is over)
    Last edited: Jan 30, 2013
  5. kylet3

    kylet3 Well-Known Member

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    I know Yuka and Jason are busy coaches but I actually think this will be a good fit for them, Yuka was a singles skater, but her and Jason did do some shows and pro-ams and I was extremely impressed with her ability to pick it up just like that (their throws were :swoon: worthy), granted she was already a world champion, but I think she will be able to help Kihara transition into pairs, and hopefully they can pick it up and do well. Would like to see them compete at the Olympics.
  6. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

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    They are definitely the "it" coaches at the moment but they have so many skaters, I wonder whether they will be able to devote a lot of their time to T/K.

    And they haven't produced any pair teams yet so their ability in this regard is a big unknown.
  7. Erin

    Erin Well-Known Member

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    Jason coached the Hartsells when they won the National title in 1999 - I remember because it seemed like a bit of a fun twist that Jason was coaching the team that beat Ina & Zimmerman, who were "supposed" to win, after Ina dumped him for Zimmerman. That said, Jason was part of a coaching team that included Johnny Johns, who has lots of experience with pairs coaching, so it's hard to say how much of the credit goes to Jason.
  8. pingu

    pingu Well-Known Member

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    And he is also co-coaching Berton/Hotarek.
  9. Akira Andrea

    Akira Andrea New Member

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    Translating to English from Japanese

    January 30 th, 2013 JST

    Good news

    Hello!

    My new partner was decided.
    It is Ryuichi Kihara of Chukyo university.

    I have known Kihara well, because I used to have been to the international competitions together with him many times since the Junior ages.
    I'm very glad that I can aim at the world together with him in Pair this time.
    For the last three months after the surgical operation, I sometimes had spicy times, but could restart like this thanks to your mental support.
    Really, thank you very much.

    Please support the pair Ryuichi Kihara / Narumi Takahashi from now on.

    Narumi

    The official blog of Narumi Takahashi"The fairy on the Ice"
    http://ameblo.jp/narumi-takahashi/
  10. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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    Bumping this thread back up now that Takahashi/Kihara have debuted their SP at Lombardia Trophy in Italy today: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4DLmRpk7BwI
    7 Narumi TAKAHASHI / Ryuichi KIHARA JPN 47.98 26.26 21.72 5.58 5.08 5.67 5.58 5.25 0.00 #10 (they made the SP minimum TES for the Olympics)

    Pairs FS is tomorrow and there is a live stream - more info here: http://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/showthread.php?89233-Live-stream-of-2013-Lombardia-Trophy-from-Italy

    Re-posting from The Ice thread (shows took place in Japan in late July):
    Scheduled competitions this fall: Nebelhorn Trophy (Olympic qualifying) next week and 2 Grand Prix events - NHK Trophy & Rostelecom Cup.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2013
  11. rosewood

    rosewood plants lover

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    Yay for them! Congrats to get the minimum Worlds TES. Hoping they keep doing their best in their FS.:cheer2:
  12. leapfrogonice

    leapfrogonice Active Member

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    Congratulations to them on their progress. It will be interesting to see whether their appearance at the Olympics can or will inspire other young skaters in Japan to pursue pairs.
  13. hanca

    hanca Well-Known Member

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    One would have thought that common sense would push Japanese single skaters to pursue pairs. Logically, if you are number 6-10 Japanese man and there are such strong skaters as Takahashi, Oda, Kozuka, Hanyu, Mura etc, one should think how overcrowded it is currently in the men category and start looking into ladies number 5-10 for a lady in similar position. A few years (1-2) trying to gel together and hurray, you have a ticket to 4CC and worlds (as long as you meet the qualifying scores) which you would never get so quickly if you waited the queue in the singles category. You can't wait forever until someone retires and it becomes less crowded. The clock is ticking...
    alilou and (deleted member) like this.
  14. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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    Takahashi/Kihara scored 90.05 in the FS at Lombardia Trophy today and attained the Olympic minimum TES - video filmed from the stands: http://youtu.be/5Zx9B5HmOJ8
    They finished 7th overall (138.03) - on to Nebelhorn!
  15. analia

    analia Member

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    The problem is most Japanese single skaters are too short and thin even for their very small ladies. Kihara is definitely not built to be a pairs skater.
  16. kwanfan1818

    kwanfan1818 I

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    Kihara might not be built to be a Pairs skater, but after being in Pairs for eight months, he and Takahashi made not only the Olympic TES minimums in their first Senior B, but also the World TES minimums, exceeding the World TES FS minimum by almost 6.5 points. I know he had an experienced partner, but he's going to get to go to Championships within a year of having started Pairs.
  17. centerpt1

    centerpt1 Active Member

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    Kihara has done very well in a short amount of time. I really didn't think it was possible to come so far. (I still miss Takahashi/ Tran, though)
  18. hanca

    hanca Well-Known Member

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    There are shorter men skaters even from other countries. Szolkovy is not very tall, Brubaker neither. I am not saying that every male skater should become a pair skater, but even within Japanese men there will be some slightly taller and among ladies some smaller ladies.
    PeterG and (deleted member) like this.
  19. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

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    I think the main obstacle is that any JPN pair team that is formed is "forced" to train abroad due to the lack of elite level pair coaches, and unless promising prospective pairs are funded by the federation (or are financially independent), this can get very expensive!
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2013
  20. robinhood

    robinhood Active Member

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    Kihara is not short for Narumi...but he needs to develop a lot of upper body strength. You just have to compare the guy with the rest of competitors. Male pair skaters are muscle GI Joes
  21. Frau Muller

    Frau Muller President of Dick Button Appreciation Club

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    While I'm happy that they achieved the Oly-minimum scores, I'm a bit nervous about their chances of earning one of the 4 remaining Oly spots via Nebelhorn. The good news is that the competition in Obertsdorf is not so tough; Kemp/King (UK) are my only "sure bets" to earn one of those 4 spots. Japan has, IMO, as good a chance as Belarus, Bulgaria, Poland, & Ukraine to earn one of the others. So I continue to hope and pray for Japan.
  22. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

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    Poland definitely isn't going to be earning one. :p
  23. PeterG

    PeterG Argle-Bargle-ist

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  24. Ziggy

    Ziggy Well-Known Member

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  25. rosewood

    rosewood plants lover

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    Some of the Chinese male skaters in pairs field like Jian Tong and Cong Han are not macho type. Yeah, Jian Tong is definitely tall but Cong Han is rather short. I don't think Kihara is too short as a pairs skater. The point is Kihara is still skinny as a pairs skater, while his upper body looks much more built than in spring. He has long way to go but anyway he's been going aherad. I'm pretty much moved by their efforts to be a serious team.
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2013
  26. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    Maybe this is exactly what the Japanese Federation needs. Maybe this will jump-start an interest in Pairs and bring more Pairs-appropriate men into skating.
  27. 4rkidz

    4rkidz GPF Barcelona here I come

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    I think they have a really good chance of qualifying, helps they are better single skaters than Kemp/King so we will have to see :)
  28. Vash01

    Vash01 Well-Known Member

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    Japan has such a wealth of talent in singles! Many talented skaters don't even make the world/Oly team. Pairs could be an option for them, if the men work on strengthening certain muscles. Narumi is tiny, so it's not hard at all for Kihara to lift and throw her. They are understandably slow, as a new pair. They have to develop their timing and togetherness. It will be great if they make the Olympic team.
  29. julieann

    julieann Well-Known Member

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    I don't think he is given enough credit for time under his belt and for what he can accomplish in the future. He can become a great pairs skaters in time, just like any others pairs skater if given the same amount of time and training. Robin, Max, Alexander, Dylan, Tong and Eric didn't wake up great pairs skaters....it took time and training. That same time and training needs to be put into him and/or other men if other men in Japan were patient enough to try pairs.
    alilou and (deleted member) like this.
  30. allezfred

    allezfred Prick Admin Staff Member

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    With the team event now in the Olympics, the JSF are certainly directing more funding to the development of pairs and ice dance. Hopefully, that will help encourage other Japanese skaters to try them out.
  31. clairecloutier

    clairecloutier Active Member

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    Kihara is listed as 5'9", same height as Mervin Tran. So yes he's on the short side for a male pairs skater, but it's manageable because Narumi is so tiny, just 4'9".

    I think they look quite good considering they've only been together 9 months and especially considering he had no prior pairs experience. Obviously the lifts are still basic, and they don't have the triple twist yet, and speed is slow. But they look good together. Their lines match well, they move together well. I see some long-term potential, more than I expected. With several years' training and more strength on his part, they might do well.
  32. itoaxel

    itoaxel Member

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    Good luck to them! I hope they can achieve same things Narumi achieve with Marvin Tran if possible.
  33. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    One result of the Team competition (which I didn't realize before) is that Federations who are strong in some disciplines and weak in others (or in Japan's case, absent) may start developing in those weaker disciplines. Plus, now more skaters would be willing to train in those underpopulated disciplines for a chance to not only compete at the Olympics to actually win a medal if the other disciplines are strong enough to carry them.
  34. NadineWhite

    NadineWhite Well-Known Member

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    I honestly wouldn't be surprised to see Japan win Olympic Team Gold in 2018; they're hard workers and learn fast! :hat1:
  35. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

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    From what I've seen of both Mervin's and Narumi's new pairings sans each other, they will both have a long uphill battle with their new partners, albeit Narumi and Ryuichi are in a better position obviously to compete at Worlds and Olympics fairly quickly with the lack of pairs depth in Japan.

    No way for either Mervin or Narumi to achieve "same things" with new partners. What they had together was very special and can not be repeated. Let their new partnerships break new ground, if possible. Good luck to Mervin and Narumi in their different journeys, and thanks for the memories.
  36. julieann

    julieann Well-Known Member

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    I wouldnÂ’t go that far! With everything Narumi achieved with Tran as a pair and Ryuichi as a single skater, they should have no trouble coming together as a pair and achieving greatness with hard work. They already achieved minimums and 7th place this past weekend. So by the next Olympics they can be great, If Tran can lean pairs quickly so can Ryuichi. They are still very young.
  37. Catherine M

    Catherine M Well-Known Member

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    I just got caught up on the clips of Takahasi & Kihara's programs for this season and I have to say I'm very impressed with how well Kihara has picked up pairs skating in a very short period of time.

    Hopefully their technical content will be enough to get them one of the four open Olympic spots at Neblehorn this week.

    If he can continue to develop his upper body and get more comfortable doing lifts and twists, I think they have a very bright future ahead of them.
  38. Erin

    Erin Well-Known Member

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    I agree - they are coming along nicely and he is picking up on pairs quickly. I think it's a smart strategy to keep the pairs elements simple for now and focus on performing them cleanly. I also hope they get one of the pairs spots at Nebelhorn, but they should be in Sochi for the team event no matter what. Narumi is such a lovely skater and it's great that she did not lose her jumps with all of her time off (if anything, they look improved).

    Watching them did make me miss Takahashi and Tran, and after watching their Worlds 2012 skates again, I agree that it will be tough for either new team to recapture that magic. But it's still early yet and the skaters are all young, so hopefully in a few years both new partnerships will be very strong.
  39. Tesla

    Tesla Whippet Good

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    I think they still need to qualify for one of the spots at Nebelhorn in order to participate in the team event, unless you mean they should be there as cheerleaders.
  40. Erin

    Erin Well-Known Member

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    Teams are allowed to have up to one entrant who did not qualify on their own, so I was assuming that T/K would be the entrant for Japan even if they don't qualify to compete individually. I had forgotten that the Reeds are not yet qualified for Sochi, so there is a possibility that if the Reeds didn't qualify individually, they would be the additional team sent. But I think the Reeds are pretty likely to get one of the available dance spots at Nebelhorn, so Japan would be free to include T/K in pairs.