Throughout the course of this upcoming weekend, the World DanceSport Federation will be hosting one of the most anticipated events of the entire year: the GrandSlam Finals, to be held in the city of Shanghai in the People's Republic of China. As an athlete of the WDSF, becoming a part of these Finals is a true achievement, one that comes depicting a couple’s performances of that entire year in regards to GrandSlams. The top twelve couples for each discipline are chosen based on their GrandSlam ranking positions, positions compiled based on performances of each GrandSlam attended.
Throughout the year, the WDSF hosts a total of five GrandSlams in their GrandSlam series and concludes the year with the GrandSlam Finals to determine the best of the best when it comes down to this event. Let us briefly review the GrandSlams that took place this year:
- March 4th, 2018: Helsinki - Finland
- June 30th, 2018: Taipei - Chinese Taipei
- July 15th, 2018: Rimini - Italy
- August 10th, 2018: Stuttgart - Germany
- October 26th, 2018: Moscow – Russia
If a couple has participated in one of the above events, it receives points depending on placement in that event. The more GrandSlams danced, the greater chance to get higher on the ranking list.
The Latin Kick-Off
Saturday will kick off the Latin segment of the GrandSlam Finals. Below are the top 12 current GrandSlam Ranking List standings along with the couples’ final ranking and scores earned from dancing in the GrandSlam events of 2018:
Armen Tsaturyan - Svetlana Gudyno
Marius-Andrei Balan - Khrystyna Moshenska
Timur Imametdinov - Nina Bezzubova
Andrey Gusev - Vera Bondareva
Charles-Guillaume Schmitt - Elena Salikhova
Andrea Silvestri - Martina Varadi
Edgar Marcos Borjas - Alina Nowak
Umberto Gaudino - Louise Heise
Konstantin Gorodilov - Dominika Bergmannova
Timur Yusupov - Sofia Kharina
Jakub Lipowski - Illes Diandra-Aniela
Anton Aldaev - Natalia Polukhina
The list above is compiled of the couples who competed in almost all of the GrandSlams of the WDSF, sanctioned throughout the course of the year, the couples who placed constantly in the top twelve or thirteen. This depicts the importance of dancing in each GrandSlam in order to become eligible to compete in the GrandSlam Finals. Only the top twelve of the WDSF GrandSlam Ranking List will be invited to participate in the Finals, along with what is known as a Wild Card pick – a total of 13 couple participants in the Finals. Yan Bangbang and Du Yujun of China are this year’s Wild Card, ranked 29th in the WDSF GrandSlam Ranking List. Yan Bangbang participated in last year’s GrandSlam Finals with previous partner Jing Zhu, also as the Wild Cards.
Nothing is Certain
What is so intriguing about this event lies in its unpredictability. The GrandSlam Finals of last year were also held in Shanghai in December. The World Champions of the year, Gabriele Goffredo and Anna Matus of Moldova, currently dancing in the Professional Division, did not attend. It was then suspected that Armen Tsaturyan and Svetlana Gudyno of Russia, ranked second in the WDSF arena, would take the Gold. It only seemed a logical deduction. However, it came as a shock to many and a surprise to all that Marius-Andrei Balan and Khrystyna Moshenska of Germany secured the Gold, knocking the year down with a true hit! As a result, many are truly anticipating the showdown to come our way this Saturday. Even though Armen and Svetlana took the World Champion titles this year, we can never know for sure that placements are secured in stone.
As a side note, this year, we will not be seeing Paul Moldovan and Cristina Tatar of Romania. Last year, the couple finished 11th in the Finals, but did not secure a position to participate for this year. Instead, Jakub Lipowski and Illes Diandra-Aniela of Poland have the chance to take on a fight of a lifetime.
We invite you all to come and join us as FloDance live-streams the 2018 WDSF GrandSlam Finals. Saturday, the Latin competitors will take on the floor, followed by Standard on Sunday. Stay tuned and make your predictions of who will be crowned the Final GrandSlam Champions!