32. Meagan Duhamel/Eric Radford CAN & Aliona Savchenko/Bruno Massot GER
2016 Skate Canada short program & 2016 Trophee de France short program
Here's another doubleheader for you. Both crowd-pleasing dynamic short programs in their own right, but one huge element they have in common - the throw triple axel. Meagan Duhamel/Eric Radford and Aliona Savchenko/Bruno Massot were the only daredevil pairs to attempt this element.
Both programs were steps forward and in a different direction in choreography for the two pairs. For Duhamel/Radford, it was a pop/rock direction that was reminiscent of their Coldplay free skate, but their performance level improved tremendously with this short program. For Savchenko/Massot, it was a playful program in the vein of their short program last year, but their chemistry as a pair and the almost ice dance quality of this program really made it stand out.
Neither pair did end up landing the triple axel absolutely cleanly during the season, though both were super close. Savchenko/Massot continued to compete the throw even after a poor landing on it in their free skate at Trophee de France injured her right ankle and took them out of commission for months. Duhamel/Radford eventually took the element out of their program because they couldn't justify the risk/consistency with the reward potential.
Food for thought - in singles, a double axel is worth 3.30 and a triple axel is worth 8.50 (a 5.20 differential). In pairs, a throw double axel is worth 4.00 and a throw triple axel is worth 7.70 (a 3.70 differential). Hundreds of singles skaters in the world compete triple axels. TWO pairs in the world compete throw triple axels. I'll leave that there for you to digest.