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Figure skating at the 2002 Winter Olympics

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2002 Winter Olympic Games Figure skating

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Medals awarded February 11, 2002; second award ceremony February 17.
Gold medal: Yelena Berezhnaya/Anton Sikharulidze[?] (RUS) and Jamie Salé[?]/David Pelletier[?] (CAN)
Bronze: Shen Xue[?]/Zhao Hongbo[?] (CHN)

A controversial decision which extended the Russian dominance of pairs skating[?] at the Olympics. Salé/Pelletier were the crowd favorites and skated a flawless program, while Berezhnaya/Sikharulidze stumbled during their double axel. Minutes before the Canadians went on, Salé accidentally collided with Sikharulidze and was rather shaken.

Judges from Russia, China, Poland, Ukraine, and France placed the Russians first; judges from the United States, Canada, Germany, and Japan gave the nod to the Canadians. The International Skating Union announced a day after the competition that it would conduct an "internal assessment" into the judging decision. On February 15 the ISA and IOC, in a joint press conference, announced that it would award a second gold medal to Salé and Pelletier, and that Marie-Reine Le Gougne[?], the French judge implicated in collusion, was guilty of "misconduct" and was suspended effective immediately. Berezhnaya and Sikharulidze are allowed to keep their gold medal as well.

Complicating the issue is Le Gougne's subsequent recanting of her story of collusion. The investigation continues as of this writing.

IOC awards gold to Canada skaters (http://www.msnbc.com/news/705743.asp?cp1=1)

Russian Skaters' Win Causes an Uproar, The New York Times, February 12, 2002 (http://www.nytimes.com/2002/02/12/olympics/12SKAT)
SPORTS OF THE TIMES: Judging Falls Between Fix and an Injustice, The New York Times, February 12, 2002 (http://www.nytimes.com/2002/02/12/olympics/12VECS)
POSTCARD: Splat, The New York Times, February 12, 2002 (http://www.nytimes.com/2002/02/12/olympics/12VECSEY)
Russian to judgment: The facts and history behind the pairs judging controversy, David Wallechinsky, February 12, 2002 (http://www.saltlake2002.com/x/f/frame.htm?u=/news/705360.asp%3F0SB%3DQ515)


Medals awarded Thursday, February 14, 2002
  1. Aleksey Yagudin[?] (RUS)
  2. Yevgeni Plushenko[?] (RUS)
  3. Timothy Goebel[?] (USA)

Yagudin received 5.9s and 6.0s for his free program after World Champion Plushenko had made an error in the short program.

Ice Dancing

Medals awarded Monday, February 18, 2002
  1. Marina Anissina[?]/Gwendal Peizerat[?] (FRA)
  2. Irina Lobacheva[?]/Ilya Averbukh[?] (RUS)
  3. Barbara Fusar Poli[?]/Maurizio Margaglio[?] (ITA)

Anissina, a Russian, emigrated to France after Averbukh, her former partner, left her to skate with Lobacheva. Lithuanian ice dancers Margarita Drobiazko and Povilas Vanagas, who finished fifth, filed a protest noting that they finished behind two couples who fell on the ice but did not receive required deductions in the judging.


Medals awarded Thursday, February 21, 2002
  1. Sarah Hughes (USA)
  2. Irina Slutskaya[?] (RUS)
  3. Michelle Kwan (USA)

Hughes, fourth after the technical program, skated a flawless and energetic free program. Kwan led after the technical program but slipped to third after two jumping errors. American Sasha Cohen finished a strong fourth. Slutskaya became only the second Russian to medal in the women's event at the Olympics.

Hughes and Slutskaya finished with tie scores, Hughes winning the gold medal on a tiebreaker for having won the free program in a close result. Russia filed a protest of the result the day following the event, which as of this writing is not yet resolved.

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