North American skating stars win gold and silver as they dance like Ginger and Fred on ice

How sweet that ice dancing stars chose romantic songs from the age of Rogers and Astaire and Lerner and Lowe for their routines with two showstoppers from My Fair Lady a perfect soundtrack for the American stars Meryl Davis and Charlie White as they set a world record of 78.89 points for their short program at the Sochi Winter Olympics.

Performing to I Could Have Danced All Night and I’m Getting Married in the Morning, Davis and White achieved a 2½-point lead over their rivals from Canada, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, who were the reigning Olympic champions.

Virtue and Moir, who danced to Dream a Little Dream of Me and Cheek to Cheek, have been described as “Fred and Ginger on ice”.

The event took place on Sunday but was telecast in Australia on Monday 17 February.

After the free skate event the following day, Davis and White won the ice dancing gold medal, with silver going to Virtue and Moir and bronze to the Russians, Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katsalapov.

Ice dancing has made such giant leaps forward since the last winter Olympics to become one of the most graceful and exhilarating events in the games and an amalgam of physical daring and skill and artistic expression.

It’s clear that the training of these two competing couples, who both have the same Russian coach, includes cardio fitness, Pilates and ballet.

The only unpleasant aspect of Olympic-level ice skating is the continuing rumours of inconsistent and odd judging – a subject too complex to go into here.

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