Found this a few minutes ago.....
Russian to judgment
The facts and history behind the pairs judging controversy
Yelena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze of Russia stand on the podium after receiving their gold medals in the pair's competition.
By David Wallechinsky
SALT LAKE CITY, Feb. 12 â€” From the very start it was clear that the contest between Russians Yelena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze and Canadians Jamie Sale and David Pelletier would be a dramatic confrontation.
SINCE 1964, RUSSIAN PAIRS had won 10 straight gold medals. Sale and Pelletier, however, defeated Berezhnaya and Sikharulidze at the 2001 World Championships, as well as at the Grand Prix of Figure Skating in December.
At the Salt Lake Games, the battle for Olympic gold came down to the free skating contest. To most spectators at the Salt Lake Ice Center, and probably to most people who watched on television, it seemed obvious that the Canadiansâ€™ near-perfect program was superior to the Russiansâ€™ tense, wobble-marred presentation. So it came as a shock when the judges awarded the gold medals to Berezhnaya and Sikharulidze.
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So how did the nine judges come to such a seemingly inexplicable conclusion? Each judge awards each pair two scores: one for technical merit and the other for presentation. The two scores are then combined.
Four of the nine judges gave a higher total to Sale and Pelletier and put them in first place. Three of the judges gave higher scores to Berezhnaya and Sikharulidze.
Two judges, Yang Jiasheng of China and Anna Sierocka of Poland, gave the two pairs equal scores. In case of a tie, a judgeâ€™s final vote is given to the pair that earned the higher mark for presentation. Both Yang and Sierocka gave the nod for presentation to Berezhnaya and Sikharulidze. That turned the decision in favor of the Russians, 5-4.
Of course, judging for presentation can be highly subjective. It is worth noting that four of the five judges who voted for Berezhnaya and Sikharulidze came from former Communist bloc nations: Russia, Ukraine, Poland and China, while the four who voted for Sale and Pelletier hailed from the United States, Canada, Germany and Japan.
The swing vote that gave the Olympic victory to the Russians was cast by the French judge, Marie Reine Le Gougne. It is tempting to read old-time Cold War prejudices into this yearâ€™s controversial pairs decision, but it is just as likely that the division reflects not so much a difference in politics as a difference in taste.
Judges from the old Eastern bloc prefer the balletic Russian style, while judges from the West lean toward livelier, more entertaining programs.
Strange as it seems, the 2002 pairs decision bears an eerie resemblance to an earlier Canadian Olympic figure skating disappointment: Brian Orserâ€™s 1988 Olympic loss to American Brian Boitano.
In that case, four of the judges voted for Orser, three went for Boitano, and, as in 2002, two called it a tie. Back in 1988 the tiebreaking rules were different: each judge could choose either the technical score or the presentation score as the tiebreaker. Ironically, both chose the technical mark and both gave the edge to Boitano. He won the gold medal, while Orser, the unfortunate Canadian, had to settle for the silver.