Russian figure skaters continue Tallinn domination

Estonia, Tallinn : Russia's Oksana Dominina and Maxim Shabalin perform their Free Dance in the Ice Dance category at the 2010 European Figure Skating Championships on January 22, 2010. (AFP Photo / Yuri Kadobnov)
On Friday night world champions Oksana Domnina and Maksim Shabalin added a second European title to their collection at the 2010 European Figure Skating Championships in Tallinn.

The race for the gold medal was tough and dramatic. After dominating in the compulsory dance, Domnina and Shabalin took second in both the original dance and the free dance, but retained their lead to win by just over three points.

Their free dance was solid, but they did not earn the best marks on some of their elements, which they will need to improve on when they look for gold in Vancouver next month.

The seven-time Italian champions Federica Faiella and Massimo Scali won both the original dance and free dance, but could only reach their second consecutive European silver medal.

Another pair from Russia, reigning European champions Yana Khokhlova and Sergey Novitsky, won the bronze medal.

With the women’s continental champion yet to be decided, Team Russia has so far claimed three golds out of three. Earlier, Yuko Kawaguchi and Aleksandr Smirnov won the pairs competition, and Evgeny Pluschenko became the best among the men.