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Vannut wins European ladies qualifying

France's Meite also qualifies for short program

Ina Vannut qualified for the European ladies short program.
Ina Vannut qualified for the European ladies short program. (Getty Images)

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By Klaus-Reinhold Kany, special to icenetwork.com
(01/25/2011) - One day after a Belgian man won the qualification round at the European Championships in Bern, Switzerland, Ina Vannut, also from Belgium, won the ladies qualification round with 90.98 points.

The 16-year-old skater had been a substitute for the Junior Grand Prix Final in Beijing in December. In Bern, she performed five triple jumps, but two -- including a Lutz and a flip - were under rotated. Otherwise, she got through her program quite well.

"Somehow my first Europeans were the same as every other competition for me," she said. "It's just the ice rink is so big here. My goal was to get through the preliminary round, now we do it step by step."

Second with 87.10 points is French skater Maé-Bérénice Méité, who was eighth at Skate America in November. In Bern, she started with three triple jumps, falling on the loop, but landed a Lutz and a triple toe loop.

"The cold ice rink is a little hard, but the conditions are the same for everyone. We have trained for this competition and there is no reason why it shouldn't work. There are no excuses."

Italy's Alice Garlisi was third. She landed two clean triples and fell on the triple loop.

The general level of the other skaters was very low; many of them popped several jumps in the second half of the program. The following seven skaters also qualified: Romy Buehler (Switzerland), Svetlana Issakova (Estonia), Karina Johnson (Denmark), Anne Line Gjersem (Norway), Clara Peters (Ireland), Fleur Maxwell (Luxemburg) and Kristina Vassileva (Bulgaria).