Ice, figure: Gutmann in search of the Olympic pass for Italy

The 18-year-old from thirty, at the Nebelhorn Trophy in Oberstdorf, Germany, seventh after the short, must recover a place to give the Italian team a place in Beijing among women

The blue Olympic figure skating team for Beijing 2022 (4-20 February) is about to acquire an almost definitive physiognomy. On Saturday evening, with the conclusion of the 53rd Nebelhorn Trophy in Oberstdorf, Germany, it will be known whether a woman and a second dance tandem, in contention thanks to the results of the world championship.


In the women’s field, the 18-year-old Lara Naki Gutmann was chosen to try to fulfill the task. The policewoman trained by Gabriele Minchio, after the short program on Thursday skating to the music of the Ashrams, is seventh with 57.16 points (the American Alysa Liu leads with 70.86). The Olympic cards available in the specialty are six. It means that the reigning Italian champion, in the free (she will be on the track at 14.55, last of the penultimate group) will have to gain a square to hit the target. Even in light of what we saw in Bergamo two weeks ago at the Lombardia Trophy, the feat is not impossible. It is since the edition of Lillehammer 1994 – when, however, no skater was deployed – that Italy does not miss the appointment.


The task of Carolina Portesi Peroni-Michael Chrastecky (he, a Czech, obtained Italian citizenship a few weeks ago), is more difficult in dance. Here, with Italy already certain of a presence – conquered in Sweden by Charlene Guignard-Marco Fabbri – there are four passes still available and the Ice Lab tandem led by Barbara Fusar Poli, after the Rhythm Dance of the first part of the competition won by the Finns Juulia Turkkila-Matthias Versluis coached by Maurizio Margaglio, he is tenth (62.69), but ninth in an Olympic key. Saturday (on the ice at 18.10), only a miracle will allow the two to make an unforeseeable comeback.


Thinking about the Games, it should also be remembered that Italy, in the coming months, will still be in contention (with good chances) to conquer one of the ten places for the team competition and that therefore, at least one blue, will presumably be called up. of that test. In Oberstdorf, meanwhile, the American Vincent Zhou (284.23 points) prevailed among the men who, like the Russian Mark Kondriatuk, third with 241.06, gave his country a third pass (like Japan). Mission accomplished also for the representatives of France, South Korea and Canada (second card) and Azerbaijan and Australia (first). The first reserve will be Turkey, ready to take advantage of any waivers (Sweden, due to strange internal regulations, despite the qualification, may not send its own athlete). Good, in the context, the performance of the 19 year old Gabriele Frangipani from Bolzano, fourth (229.39) as in the short (sixth in the free). Thanks to this result, Russia has filled in all (twelve) possible boxes (three for each specialty).


Among the successful pairs of the Germans Minerva Hase-Nolan Seegert (185.25): exploits of Laura Barquero-Marco Zandron (he is from Bolzano) who, third (181.61) and winners of the free, give Spain the first Olympic qualification in history (like Karina Safina-Luka Berulava to Georgia). The two, led by Barbara Luoni, were trained (recently) and are based in Bergamo. Tenth place for training mates Sara Conti-Niccolo Macii (143.44).

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Ice, figure: Gutmann in search of the Olympic pass for Italy