"Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."
from Speedy Death
Julia is going to be on that podium. Fer sure. I'm going to just sit back and watch when she medals - and possibly wins gold!
Her jumps (including the 2A) are tiny. That makes them both less impressive and easier to land consistently. If she's going to get overscored with undeserved +1s and +2s for jumps like that, it minimizes if not negates the advantage of vastly superior jumpers like Yuna and Adelina. The difference in both difficulty and quality is incomparable. Yes, Adelina has easier 3+3 combo but her jumps are still more impressive. Yuna's even more.
If Julia can reserve special treatment for her minimal jumps, perhaps we should allow skaters preferential treatment on URs too. We might as well start giving everyone easy judging.
Julia's SS have also not improved noticeably since the start of the year. Her presentation has not improved. What she has is good packaging and a determined attitude. She skates but she skates through the program with the sentimental music just going in the background. It's an illusion sold to you by a kid, the same way advertisers use kids to sell you their products. She receives sentimental "lax" judging because of her talent and age. She's not so far below the others like an Edmunds, she has talent, but it's not developed to the level of the other top ladies.
One factor that needs to be examined is that unlike all the other contenders YuNa will not have the Team Event to help shake off any rust that might still be lingering.
Presentation is clearly in the eye of the beholder I think. Lot's of people were quite moved by the program and if she'd just skated with it in the background, I don't believe that feeling wouldn't have come across. If she is 'selling us an illusion' then I'd say her presentation skills are excellent........
I agree she's talented for her age. But I could name five other skaters that are better than her at the present time, Kostner not being among them, as her technical content is way too low this season. Julia has the coat and the music but she's just jumping through hoops on the ice while it plays in the background. Her program is an obstacle course. I'm sure the choreographer made it as busy as possible for her to distract the audience from the fact that she doesn't have any presentation skills, which isn't surprising given her young age.
She does not have tiny jumps. It's wonderful to watch a talented, young skater who always fully rotates her jumps and does not fall unlike other skaters who have so-called higher jumps that aren't fully rotated and are just as likely to fall on them as they are to land them. So much for height being the way to measure good jumps and good technique. Obviously I don't mean all skaters because there are some who have more speed and height who have very good technique and nearly always land them well (Yuna Kim). Julia does have a flutz which nevertheless does not take away from the flow of her jump combinations and I believe if you check the protocols she's had two underotations this season.
Secondly I enjoy watching her skating more than any other lady and it has nothing to do with the reasons you mentioned above. I am female, 23 years old, and do not think she is a "cute kid" but a young woman who is just beginning her skating career. She has many things going for her, technical ability, clean skating, and budding artistry. She is beginning her vcareer with a bang I might add. Much the same as Yuna Kim she has not been off of the podium in any international competition to date and you can back any of victories with her vast technical ability. If she continues to improve in the program components aspect of skating she could dominate the field for many year to come.
I agree with everything, except for the 'dominate' part. There is so much young talent coming up (Gold & Edmunds in the USA, Osmond in Canada, and too many to count in Russia) that Julia will be challenged a lot. With her mental toughness she could still remain one of the top ladies, but it will be tough for any ONE skater to dominate, at least among ladies.
When this season started, I was thinking that Julia was just a talented young lady, but I underestimated her will, her desire to improve with each competition. I have no doubt that she is going to improve between now and the Olympics (I saw Tara Lipinski do that in 1998). So anything can happen. I still think she is a long shot for the gold, but stranger things have happened. I really would like to see a medal of any color though. She has been the most exciting skater to watch, for me at least, this entire season. I just don't want to get my expectations too high because I might be disappointed.
Wow, I accidentally hit last instead of page 2 and ended up deciding to read some of the old threads from early in 2013 and it's incredible to read how many people did not think Julia would even make the Olympic team. Around the end of August that seems to have changed and people began to think that Julia would make the team but that she had no chance for a placement in the top 5. That's amusing to me because I knew in fall 2012 that she would definitely make the team barring a devastating injury and by January 2013 that she would be in the top four (more likely bronze or 4th though). Just a thought.
In my view, such conservatism should be applied more often, so that we don't get the manic boom-and-bust frenzy about young skaters on forums quite so often.
EDIT: Having said that, my own view is that Julia is blooded now, and has really proven herself over the course of this season.
Julia's Olympics to win or lose would imply if everyone did their best she would win. Which is hogwash, if everyone skates their best she will probably place about 6th. I do think she will end up with silver or bronze just due to her consistency, but she wont beat Yu Na unless she misses about half her jumps in some way. She could also skate perfectly and not medal if some of the inconsistent skaters like Kostner, Suzuki, Sotnikova, bring it. If any of those skate perfectly and lose to Julia there will be controversy, especialy with the Games being in Russia.
Furthermore when people say several other skaters will definitely be above her by skating their best I think what they really mean is if they skate better than their previous best they will beat her. How they have performed to date has not been enough to overcome Julia's scores, so assuming each skater skates an average of the performances they have had this season Julia will still be above them. If she uncharacteristically under-performs while other skate much better than they have been, well that is a completely different set of circumstances. No one can say with the level of skating this season that anyone other than Yuna and Mao have clearly out-skated her when you compare the sum of technical and program components scores in international competitions.
We will just have to wait and see what happens on the night.