The Russian Open Championships (ROC) will be hosting the fifth leg of the Standard GrandSlam series beginning this Saturday, October 27th, where the first round of the event will be commenced. All further rounds, all the way up to the final, will continue the following day, Sunday, October 28th.
The Crocus Expo International Exhibition Center is a well-renowned arena where various DanceSport events throughout the year are hosted, in both the World DanceSport Federation and the World Dance Council. Now, one of the largest GrandSlams of the WDSF will be run here as well.
A Look Back to Last Year
175 couples participated in this Standard GrandSlam last year, of which 151 were from Russia! Not only were the Champions of the hosting country, the incredible Dmitry Zharkov and Olga Kulikova, but there were also two other finalist couples representing Russia as well - Evgeny Moshenin with Dana Spitsyna who were one step away from making pedestal placement (fourth place) and Alexey Glukhov with Anastasia Glazunova (fifth place). Now we anticipate the outcome of the 2018 Standard GrandSlam.
And the Competition Grows
This year, 219 couples are registered! 43 couples of are foreign countries while 176 are Russian couples. Every single couple, except for one, that made the final of last year’s GrandSlam here in Moscow, will be attending. Francesco Galuppo and Debora Pacini of Italy were last year’s bronze medalists. They are not in the starting list at the moment and therefore leave a pedestal placement open for the taking. As a result, there is also another finalist placement open to complete the top six.
Madis Abel and Aleksandra Galkina of Estonia have a strong chance of making this year’s GrandSlam Moscow final. They placed seventh last year and are one of the youngest couples to be at the heights of WDSF competition in Standard. They are currently sixth in the WDSF World Ranking List and we are very excited to see them achieve even further success in the coming months to come. However, they have intense competition with Lithuania. Vaidotas Lacitis and Veronika Golodneva took the last spot available in the final last year, sixth place.
Even though they are ranked seventh in the World Ranking List below Madis and Aleksandra, there is a tough competitiveness that we will see here this weekend as Estonia and Lithuania vie for each spot.
Anton Skuratov and Alena Uehlin of Germany will also be in attendance. They placed eighth last year and are ranked ninth in the World. This couple will be in battle with Evgeny Nikitin and Anastasia Miliutina of Russia, a couple who is ranked higher as eighth in the World. However, Nikitin and Miliutina did not attend this GrandSlam last year, which will make this year’s event even more exhilarating.
In 2016, both the Latin and Standard GrandSlams that were supposed to be sanctioned in Moscow on the 28th and 29th of October were canceled. This was to be the fifth leg of the GrandSlam series before the Final GrandSlam to take place in Shanghai in December. The GrandSlam was moved to Platja d'Aro, Spain to take place the 29th and 30th of October. Actually, there were various problems that concluded with the World DanceSport Federation taking Russia’s WDSF member body under its own control. 2017 was the year that the Russian Open Championships came back under the new All Russian Federation of DanceSport and Acrobatic Rock' n'Roll, and it came back with a bang! It was so successful that it was considered one of the biggest events of the WDSF based on the number of participants.
Make sure to check back on FloDance this weekend as the Standard GrandSlam begins streaming live. We are very excited to be able to witness another major event of the World DanceSport Federation! There is always the chance for a competitive couple to make a breakthrough on that dance floor – the true beauty of competition. Stay tuned!