Gallery: Eva-Lotta Kiibus crowned Estonian champion
The Estonian championships in figure skating held over the weekend saw 18-year old Eva-Lotta Kiibus defend her title from last year in the women's category with Aleksandr Selevko taking the men's crown.
After the short program on Saturday, Kiibus held third place with 55.83 points, behind first-place Kristina Škuleta-Gromova (60.10 points) and Gerli Liinamäe (59.78 points). A 120.97-point free skating program performance by Kiibus on Sunday however lifted her up to first, holding just a slight 0.31-point lead over Gerli Liinamäe.
Škulet-Gromova received 104.38 points for her free skating program, enough for third place overall with 164.48 points. Kiibus' final tally for the tournament was 176.80 points, Liinamäe collected 176.49.
"I am very very happy. The first reaction was of course crying and tears, but I am certainly very proud of myself," Kiibus told ERR after finding out she was the Estonian champion.
She bounced back from third-place after the short program on Saturday, saying it was not easy to do her short program, having recently gotten healthy enough to compete after a bout with COVID-19. "The program consisted of many different stages. At first I had to skate freely, but after that I had to push again as it got harder again," explained Kiibus.
"The goal was to push through whatever gets in my way. Did not have much time to think: you either do or don't. There was no other choice," the young skater said.
Kiibus has her sights on the figure skating world championships in March. Her preparation process is hindered however, as there are not many competitions to participate in. "Hopefully there will be a few competitions here, where we can shake off these unnecessary tensions a little. Otherwise we are preparing like for any other contest - slow and steady," Kiibus noted.
Mihhail Selevko received 79.55 points in the men's short program on Saturday, followed by his brother Aleksandr with 76.75 points. Aleksandr Selevko however dominated in Sunday's free skating discipline, receiving 149.80 points, 42 points more than his brother Mihhail with 107.70 points. Arlet Levandi also had a good performance, scoring 133.28 points, enough to compensate for his disappointing Saturday (65.36 points).
Aleksandr Selevko collected a total of 226.55 points over the two disciplines, winning the men's tournament. Levandi ended up second with 198.64 points, followed by Mihhail Selevko with 187.25 points.
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Editor: Kristjan Kallaste