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Tanja Szewczenko In Nagano

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by N_Halifax, Apr 13, 2014.

  1. N_Halifax

    N_Halifax Well-Known Member

    Based on the skating we saw from her leading up to the Nagano Games, Tanja really seemed poised (IMO) to contend for a medal at the 1998 Games. Had she been healthy and able to compete, do you think she could have given Lu Chen a run for the bronze medal that year?
  2. butyrskafanatic

    butyrskafanatic Active Member

    Had she been healthy she probably would have won the bronze comfortably. Chen winning the bronze was a total surprise that year and only happened due to Chen skating her very best, and Butyrsaya, Slutskaya, Bobek, all badly underperforming. Butyrskaya with her worst free skate of the whole season still missed by only .1 . So a healthy Tanja would have had no problems, probably even her not so great Europeans performance would have done it.
  3. berthesghost

    berthesghost Well-Known Member


    That medal was up for grabs and at least 10 ladies all had an equal shot at it. Lulu won it. I have no idea why people keep trying to tarnish her impressive win so often lately.

    As for Tanja, as impressive as she was at GPF, she iirc gave up a much easier route to the podium a month later at worlds. If she couldn't do it there, what makes us think she could with added oly pressure and more competition?
  4. butyrskafanatic

    butyrskafanatic Active Member

    There werent atleast 10. Before the Games Butyrskaya, Bobek, and Szewcenko were by far the 3 strongest shots, and Chen, Hubert, and Slutskaya 3 longer shots a notch down from those three. Nobody else had any chance. Bonaly, Rechnio, or whoever else you might think of were never medalling.

    As for how she skated at worlds, Tanja was having a relapse of her illness at worlds which is why she skated poorly.
  5. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

    In between the GPF and Worlds '98, Tanja competed at '98 Euros. She led Bute and Slute after the SP but faded to 3rd after the LP
  6. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    She was never the most consistent skater. Winning the bronze in Nagano would have depended on her having a good day or not, and she had more not so good days in her career even healthy then good ones.

    Intersting at the grand prix final though she came as close to beating Tara as Michelle did in Nagano, and Tara's performance at the final was arguably just as strong as Nagano. The grand prix final was in Germany it should be noted though.
  7. N_Halifax

    N_Halifax Well-Known Member

    Tanja had the skate of her life at that final and many thought she should have beaten Lipinski there. It was certainly a debated result on the coverage in Canada. Her skates at both GP events that got her there were very strong too. Her Euros skate that year wasn't AS strong but was still competitive. Saying that she couldn't do at Worlds isn't really fair to the argument here.. She became Ill in Japan & was not healthy in Minneapolis either. Had she have been, she could have medaled there as well. I think Hubert was a legitimate contender too, but she imploded in Nagano... Which killed me. Loved both of these two! Was nice to see Laetitia almost medal at Worlds that year.
  8. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    Hmm I dont remember it being debated on the Canadian coverage. Underhill said before Lipinski finished "she has won this competition." Unless it was a different station you watched.

    Both russian girls were given a huge gift in the short program of those worlds. Both had very strong longs and were possibly a fall away each from beating Michelle Kwan in the LP, but shorts they bombed and were placed above a slew of clean performances. Hubert would have medalled otherwise.
  9. orientalplane

    orientalplane Mad for mangelwurzels

    I liked Tanja's skating; I was really happy for her when she won bronze at Worlds 1994. But in the FS at Europeans '98, she landed almost every jump on two feet, enabling a turnabout in ordinals that gave Maria the win. Tanja never had a consistent flip or lutz, and artistically, she wasn't in Chen's league.
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2014
  10. Jeschke

    Jeschke #teamtrainwreck #teamschott

    oh tanja szewczenko, great memories:encore: she was the reason i started to follow figure skating.

    but to be honest, tanja never was very constant unfortunately. she has had a great grand prix series leading into the games, but even in the gpf you could see her lack of stamina at the end of the free skate (which was obviously due to her long illlness before). and she couldn't handle her nerves quite well. her 94 worlds medal came as a surprise, afterwards it seems like entire germany wanted to make a new katharina witt out of here and this pressure put her down and she became really nervous. her euros 98 free skate showed how she skated with the pressure and i fear it would have been the same in nagaona although i would have loved to see her on the podium (although i loved to see lu chen there too :) .
    unfortunately we never saw that tanja of that season again, she was a young and great loss for the german figure skating team.

    btw; does anyone have her sp of the 98 worlds? i cannot find it anywhere. would appreciate that
  11. ks1227

    ks1227 Well-Known Member

    And should have IMO.
  12. foxboston

    foxboston Member

    Nagano… such a tragedy for Tanja.
    7 triples with 2 triple lutzs and the bronze would have been her's. Even a couple of two foot landings would have been forgiven.

    The European title in 98 was never going to be handed to her with that judging panel, unfortunately she left the door wide open with her mistakes.
    By worlds… she was just out of steam. She could have won if she had done what she did in GP and Final.

    I have always wanted to see her SP from 98 worlds… it didn't sound like her mistake on the lutz should have caused her to be THAT low.

    Also always wanted to see her eligible programs from 99 and 2000. I know they are out there. She competed at German nationals and I think the 99 qualifying round at Europeans.
  13. Nours

    Nours Active Member

    I never saw 1999 European Qualification Rounds even though I think I have all from Eurosport coverage. I doubt it was aired but you never know, maybe someone will remember seeing it somewhere. If I remember well she skated to the Last of the Mohicans, she later would perform bits to this music in her TV soap.

    Maybe 1999 & 2000 German Nationals were shown on German channels ?
  14. Laney

    Laney Active Member

    Yes, both programs (Nationals) were shown in German TV and I do have them SOMEWHERE on VHS-tape...
    She completly bombed her LP in 1999, she had 5! falls, popped one jump and I think she landed one 3Toe and an 2Axel - or maybe she also singled it. She came in second place. I have never seen her program of Europeans that year. I think she was in fourth place of her qualifiying group.
    In 2000 she skated to another soundtrack and was much better! I thought she should have been in second place at Nationals that year bit it seemed the federation didn´t want to support her anymore so they decided to give the place to a younger skater. I think it was Zoya Douchine? It´s a pity that her skating carreer ended that way!
  15. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

    Why would two-foot landings have been forgiven for Szewczenko and not for Chen?

    I think to beat Chen, she would have had to be significantly stronger technically (i.e., squeaky clean jump landings) -- she wasn't going to match her on the second mark.
  16. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    Considering Chen's poorer quality and barely rotated jumps and much poorer quality (relative to all the other contenders) spins, any top skater who landed even close to the same content would be considered significantly stronger technically. Butyrskaya landed only 3 clean triples, one with a very shaky landing, not a clean triple lutz, and no triple-double combination, and still had higher technical marks. Lets not even pretend Chen in Nagano would have been that hard to beat by a reasonably good performance. She only won the bronze due to having her best skates of the season, Bobek bombing, Slutskaya blowing the short program, and Butyrskaya having a horribly subpar skate of her Otonol for her standards, both technically and artistically, and still losing bronze by only .1. Butyrskaya with her Otonal from the Europeans, next years Worlds, or even the 98 worlds (despite the silly fall towards the end) would have crushed Chen, being scored .3 or .4 higher by every judge, and we know from the early season events Szewcenko was competitive with even a good (not just a bad) Butyrskaya.
    Last edited: May 12, 2014
  17. briancoogaert

    briancoogaert Well-Known Member

    I'm not sure...I think most of the judges really wanted Lu Chen to win. Because she skated so well, was so beautiful and touching. Even Maria Butyrskaya at Euros was not at that level in term of emotion.
    The Olympics are a very different competition to Euros or Worlds. And as for Tara winning over a clean but cautious Kwan, I'm sure Lu Chen would have won the bronze over a clean Butyrskaya.
    I'm not sure against Tanja, if she had skated like she did at GPF. ;)
  18. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

    You are on some nasty drugs. That is all.
  19. orientalplane

    orientalplane Mad for mangelwurzels

    But you don't seem to need drugs to be nasty. And if you're 23 I'm a monkey's uncle.
    Last edited: May 13, 2014
  20. smarts1

    smarts1 Well-Known Member

    The thing about Tanja was that she couldn't put it all together when it counted and I suspect it would have been the same in Nagano. Lulu had the gift of peaking when it counted, somehow. Adrenaline worked wonders for her.
  21. Kelvster

    Kelvster Well-Known Member

    I agree, though I am so so glad that Tanja did win a World medal and a European medal (as well as competing in one Olympic games). Not bad at all.

    Tanja's joy on the ice was so infectious (and almost unmatched)

    I am glad things sort of worked out for her in the end and she's now happily married (?) with Norman Jeschke (who had an up and down career himself but somehow just managed to go to SLC with double-footing Marianna Kautz)
  22. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

    I'm not so sure about that. 6 of the judges in Nagano were content with putting Lu Chen in 4th or 5th for that LP. Only three judges put Lu Chen in 3rd. The problem was that none of Slute, Bute, or Chen got the majority of third place votes and it came down to 4th place votes. Bute came the closest with four 3rd place ordinals.
  23. KimGOAT

    KimGOAT Active Member

    and that was with Butyrskaya skating horribly and Slutskaya just so so. Butyrskaya had something like 4 mistakes so with just 1 less mistake she easily wins the bronze, or skating with a bit more speed and confidence and still making 4 mistakes or even more she gets the bronze. Irina probably would have been given the bronze easily even for the same long program if she had a better skate in the short. Tanja has less style in her skating than Maria and less athleticsm than Irina, and less political backing than both, so she may have hard a smaller mistake margin on Chen than they did though.
  24. Gabybackhand

    Gabybackhand Member

    Maria made atleast 4 mistakes and skated super slow, stiff, nervous, and with no artistry at all that night, and still lost the bronze by a tenth of a point. Skating cleanly she would have blown away Chen. She wouldnt have even had to skate cleanly to beat her either. It is obvious you let your fanboy-ism get in the way of reality, and I like Chen way more than Maria.

    As for Tanja her performance at the grand prix final was a fluke. If she repeated that not only would she have easily won the bronze but she might have even challenged for more. Remember she was as close to beating Tara at the final as Kwan at the Games, and I think Tara's grand prix final performance was better than her Olympic one. She never would have repeated that though. Europeans proved she had already peaked.
  25. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

    It's crazy that the Japanese judge and the Russian judge put Tanja ahead of Tara at the Final. Tanja's skate was enjoyable in that she pulled it off, but that program was nothing impressive, parts of it were wobbly, and her actual skating was only ok outside her huge triple Lutzes.
  26. Gabybackhand

    Gabybackhand Member

    Tanja jumps alot higher than Tara, and she skates like a lady with a more mature presentation, even if her program and style isnt everyones cup of tea. I can see how she took a couple judges off Tara. Tara's skating was not as loved by most people as the judges anyway. Many are still upset she won the 98 Olympic gold, and even the 97 world title.
  27. scottieschamp

    scottieschamp Member

    With everyone skating their best in Nagano the final results would be:

    1. Kwan
    2. Slutskaya
    3. Lipinski
    4. Butyrskaya
    5. Szewcenko
    6. Bobek
    7. Hubert or Chen

    Since Slutskaya, Butyrskaya, and Bobek all underperformed the bronze was possible for Szewcenko, but she wasn't as strong a competitor as the great Chen Lu, so I doubt she would have put it all together to take it.
  28. kristykremes

    kristykremes New Member

    Tanja would win the bronze easily with her grand prix final performance. That is probably the only performance she gave all season good enough for it though. Maybe her Nations Cup skate would too. Her NHK skate probably not, and her Europeans skate for sure not. So it depends which Tanja would show up that day.

    I don't think she could do better than bronze. Michelle and Tara were superior and more popular with judges. The only skaters of the potential Nagano field with a chance at more than bronze were Bobek and maybe Butyrskaya, but that would probably only be if Kwan and Lipinski were a little off, and didn't skate as great as they did.
  29. kristykremes

    kristykremes New Member

    Maria had 5 mistakes, and her overall skating quality and performance level that day was weak, and still lost the bronze by .1 This is the most sure I have seen someone of something so wrong.

    A clean Maria is way better than a clean Tanja btw.
  30. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

    Even though Chen's performance was full of technical flaws, I'm glad she won the bronze with it emotionally. Tanja's GPF skate was really boring to me.