Bronze medal for Weaver and Poje at ISU Grand Prix

MOSCOW – Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje of Waterloo, Ont., won the bronze medal on Saturday at the Rostelecom Cup, to conclude the third stop on the ISU Grand Prix figure skating circuit.

Ekaterina Bobrova and Dmitri Soloviev of Russia took the gold with 186.68 points. Madison Chock and Evan Bates of the U.S. were second at 182.13 while the Canadians followed at 178.57.

‘’We are really pleased with how the performance went,’’ said Poje. ‘’We really wanted to come out there and show the work we’ve put into creating our story and our emotion. We felt really connected to the audience. It’s early in the season but we wanted a strong technical score and to feel like we are on the right track.’’

Weaver and Poje’s new Spanish-flavored long program was ranked second on the day as they nearly reeled in the Americans for the silver. They ended a six Grand Prix event winning streak dating back to 2014.

‘’We’ll take the feedback from here and analyse what worked and what didn’t work in our programs,’’ added Poje. ‘’This being our first competition we want to take the best direction from here until the rest of the season.’’

In pairs, Julianne Séguin of Longueuil, Que., and Charlie Bilodeau of Trois-Pistoles, Que., remained fifth overall following their free skate. Aliona Savchenko and Bruno Massot of Germany won the gold medal ahead of two Russian pairs.

Camille Ruest of Boucherville, Que., and Andrew Wolfe of Montreal were sixth. In the end Séguin and Bilodeau, the Skate America champions two weeks ago, were only 5.5 points from the podium.

‘’It was a tough fight today,’’ said Séguin. ‘’But we continued to believe in ourselves and gave a good performance. It was a learning experience.’’

Bilodeau said it was hard to go into the free skate standing fifth.

‘’We made big errors in the short so we had a strike against us right off the start,’’ he said. ‘’But we were able to stay focused and get through our long program.’’

Ruest and Wolfe completed their debut on the circuit.

“We continued to improve,’’ said Ruest. ‘’We need to continue to gain speed and improve our transitions on our long programs. Our technical scores are where we wanted them to be for now.’’

In men’s competition, world champion Javier Fernandez of Spain took the gold medal with Shoma Uno of Japan second and Alexei Bychenko of Israel third.

Elladj Baldje of Pierrefonds, Que., produced another clean program and was sixth.

‘’There were some small errors but overall it was a satisfying competition for me,’’ said Baldje. ‘’Fitness-wise I felt super strong and that will be a real plus for me in the future. I’m going to continue working on the quad and make it better.’’

The fourth stop on the circuit is next Friday and Saturday in Paris.

Full results: ISU GP Rostelecom Cup 2016

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