This was the first time the new ISU judging system was used at the Mountain Cup... and definitely the first time I am skating under it. A "kiss and cry" area had been set up on one side of the rink, and we were all supposed to go there after we finished skating, and the results of the group would be announced at the end. On Friday, when I saw the first event done this way, I got nervous. It was so official, it was scary!
In fact, only the free skate, pairs and higher level couple dance events were judging with the ISU judging system. The solo dance events still used the 6.0 system, which made me less nervous. The first dance was the Kilian, and I thought I skated it ok. However, when it came to warming up for the Rocker Foxtrot I somehow got a shin splint... I was the first to skate for this dance, and I could feel that it was exteremely weak (I even jumped the first rocker -eews)! Oh well, there was nothing much I could do about it. I came in 3rd.
Freestyle was later in the afternoon. The wait was long, but by the time I went on to warm up, I felt a new wave of energy. Under this new system that I was confident that everything I did in my program would count in its own right. It felt good knowing that, as I could shake off minor mistakes and focus on the rest of the elements.
I started with the Axel-loop-toe loop combination, and to my disgust, two-footed the Axel. I knew my double loop was not fully rotated, something I still need to work on. I remember almost falling on the double toe, and thinking, immediately after that, that it was ok, I just have to nail the rest of the program. Indeed, after that I landed my double Sal cleanly - something I hadn't done in program since the previous Mountain Cup!
I didn't know how I would place. I just felt awful that I had two-footed my Axel and messed up the double toe and double loop. There was one more to skate, and as I watched her, I didn't want to think too much about how I did. The ladies from Czech Republic had thrown me a can of beer, which I shared with Piret while waiting in the "kiss and cry".
It seemed like forever before they announced the scores. I waited nervously as the started from 4th... then 3rd... then 2nd... ohmigod! I felt like I was in a trance. It was so unreal. Yes, I won!