(December 2, 2007)
SENDAI, Japan - Japan’s Daisuke Takahashi rallied to win the men's title Sunday at the NHK Trophy Grand Prix figure skating competition, beating early leader Tomas Verner of the Czech Republic.
Takahashi completed eight triples after an opening fall on a quadruple attempt in a dramatic routine to "Romeo and Juliet." He earned 234.22 points with Verner second at 229.45 and Stephen Carriere of the U.S., third at 204.989.
Olympian Shawn Sawyer of Edmunston, N.B., remained in ninth spot while Vaughn Chipeur of Edmonton was 11th. Both Canadians are looking for improved performances at the national championships.
‘’I’m getting better with every competition,’’ said Sawyer, 22, ranked fourth in Canada. ‘’Hopefully for nationals it will be better than this. The whole performance level today was good, I stayed on my feet, I attempted all my jumps. I was pleased but it can be better.’’
Chipeur completed the busiest fall season of his career. He was also fifth at the HomeSense Skate Canada International last month and sixth at the Nebelhorn Trophy held annually in Germany.
‘’It wasn’t my best,’’ said Chipeur of Sunday’s performance. ‘’There’s room for improvement. But it was a great learning experience. It was my first time competing in Asia and this also the first time I’ve had such a busy fall season. I was pleased with how well my programs were received.’’
Canada ended the competition with two medals. On Sunday Tessa Virtue of London, Ont., and Scott Moir of Ilderton, Ont., took silver in ice dancing and on Friday Jessica Dubé of Drummondville, Que., and Bryce Davison of Cambridge, Ont., collected bronze in pairs.