First winners crowned at 2018 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships

VANCOUVER – Four champions were crowned on Tuesday at the 2018 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships being held this week at the Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre.

In junior ice dancing, Marjorie Lajoie of Boucherville, Que., and Zachary Lagha of Greenfield Park, Que., were first with 154.40 points. Earlier this season they won their first ISU Junior Grand Prix event.

‘’We were in the moment,’’ said Lajoie. ‘’We did what we were suppose to do and what we did in practice.’’

Olivia McIsaac of Burlington, Ont., and Elliott Graham of Angus, Ont., were second at 137.56 and Ashlynne Stairs of Burnaby, B.C., and Lee Royer of St. Albert, Alta., third at 134.51.

The other three winners were in novice competition.

Alec Guinzbourg of Kingston, Ont. took the men’s singles title, Amelia Orzel, of Woodbridge Ont., was first in women’s singles and Nadiia Bashynska and Peter Beaumont of Unionville, Ont., topped the ice dance field.

‘’I think it went really well,’’ said Guinzbourg. ‘’I was a little bit shaky at the beginning but when I did my first jump I felt calmer.’’

Orzel didn’t let nerves get the best of her.

‘’I’m more than ecstatic, I’m over the moon,’’ said Orzel. ‘’It’s like a dream. My skate went really good. I wasn’t only focusing on the jumps but also focusing on having a lot of fun. I’ve been struggling with my second mark a lot so I tried to let it go.’’

Bashynska and Beaumont extended their success into the new year.

‘’It feels amazing to be here,’’ said Beaumont. ‘’We were happy to make it to nationals and to actually win it – we couldn’t ask for more.’’

In the novice pairs short program, Brooke McIntosh of Toronto and Brandon Toste of Mississauga, Ont., are first. In the junior short program Lori-Ann Matte and Thierry Ferland of Levis, Que., hold top spot.

Competition continues Wednesday with the free programs in novice pairs, junior pairs and junior men. The junior women’s free is Thursday. The senior events, which serve as a qualification for the team that will compete at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games, are on Friday and Saturday.

Full results: 2018 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships

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