Host City: Albertville, France
Venue(s): Olympic Ice Hall, Albertville
Date Started: February 14, 1992
Date Finished: February 17, 1992
Format: Couples were ranked on Ordinal Placement, based on judges' points, with final placement for each section determined by Majority Placements. Thus, if a couple was ranked first by a majority of the judges, that skater was placed first overall for that section, with the tiebreakers being Required Elements for the Original Set Pattern Dance, and Technical Merit for the Free Dance. Ties were broken by a Subsequent Majority rule, i.e., if the couples were ranked for the same position by the same number of judges, Majority Placement for the next higher position for each couple determined who was ranked higher. The tiebreakers were then, in order: 1) Number of Majority Placements, 2) Total Ordinals of Majority, 3) Total Ordinals. Final placement was determined by factored placements. The placement for the Compulsory Dance #1 was factored by 0.2 (10%), the placement for the Compulsory Dance #2 was factored by 0.2 (10%), the placement for the optional set dance was factored by 0.6 (30%), and the placement for Free Dance was factored by 1.0 (50%). The sums of the factored placements were then used to determine final placement, with the Free Dance being the tiebreaker.
As always the favorites were a former Soviet team, the 1988 silver medalists, [Marina Klimova] and [Sergey Ponomarenko]. They were World Champions in 1989-90 and European Champions in 1989-92, although they had survived a doping scare in 1991, when Klimova was accused until her B-sample proved clean. But the most interesting couple was the French team of [Isabelle] and her brother, [Paul Duchesnay]. Born in QuÃ©bec, they had French citizenship and were trained in Germany, with their choreography done by [Christopher Dean], of the famed Torvill & Dean dance couple. The Duchesnays, who started out as pairs skaters, completely revolutionized ice dancing with routines that pushed the limits of the rules, and were totally innovative. For years the judges punished them with seemingly low marks, as they wanted more traditional skating. But finally they came thru and won the World Championships in 1991 in MÃ¼nchen. But in Albertville, the Duchesnays got off poorly, placing third in the compulsory dances behind Klimova/Ponomarenko, and another former Soviet couple â [Maya Usova] and [Aleksandr Zhulin]. Klimova and Ponomarenko also won the optional set pattern dance, with the Duchesnays second, which moved them into second place going into the free dance. And the free dance was very close, won by Klimova and Ponomarenko, to earn them the gold medal. They were ranked first by five judges to four for the Duchesnays.