A pair of American Ice Dance teams will be looking for gold in Monday night's Free Dance competition.
Entering tonight's Ice Dancing medal competition, Meryl Davis and Charlie White are currently in second (only 2.55 points back) after the Compulsory Dance and Original Dance portions. Fellow Americans Tanith Belbin and Benjamin Agosto are in fourth, 7.82 points out of the lead.
Canada's pair of Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir are the leaders, while Russia's Oksana Domnina and Maxim Shabalin are in third.
Our figure skating blog, Required Elements (who is doing live updates tonight) is looking forward to the end of the night, when the leaders skate for gold.
I have a feeling that this is going to be a great night for Canada - Virtue and Moir are poised to win the first Canadian (heck, the first North American) ice dancing gold medal in Olympic history, and I cannot wait to hear the building react to their free dance. They have a lead of only two points and change, but they are scoring very well here and, barring major error, I see no reason why their beautiful free dance will not score just as well. The lifts alone are worth the price of admission.
My hope is that Davis and White can continue their momentum into a medal-winning performance. Their Phantom of the Opera free dance is one of the best-received skates of the year.
Perhaps the most interesting question is what will come of Russia's Domnina and Shabalin. I don't like their free dance but judging from their inexplicably high score from their Original dance, they will likely also score high in the free dance. Which means that Americans Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto might be left off the podium here, as I predicted.
I am also interested in seeing France's Delobel and Schoenfelder skate what they have promised will be an emotional free dance to a French version of The Impossible Dream. They are not really in the medal mix, but they are always worth watching.