Olympic Silver Medallist Kevin Reynolds Retires from Competitive Skating

OTTAWA, ON: Olympic silver medallist and six-time national medallist Kevin Reynolds, 28, Coquitlam, B.C., has announced his retirement from competitive skating. Reynolds has been a constant on the skating scene since 2002, when he won the Canadian novice title. He won a silver medal as a member of the Canadian squad in the team event at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, Russia.

“Despite an encouraging start to the season with a new personal best short program, I was unable maintain this form and my body has started to tell me it has had enough. It was a tough decision but given the circumstances I know it is the right choice,” said Reynolds.

Reynolds continued, “I would like to thank Skate Canada for their support throughout my long and wonderfully rewarding competitive career. I would also like to thank the many Canadian and Japanese skating fans who always supported and believed in me, even in those moments where I doubted myself. Finally, I would like to give a special thank you to my long-time coach, Joanne McLeod, who has been with me on this incredible journey every step of the way. I look forward to continuing my involvement with the sport of skating as I move on to the next phase of my life and pursue new career opportunities.”

Reynolds is an eight-time senior national team member and has represented Canada at the world championships six times. In 2013, he won his first senior gold medal on the international circuit at the ISU Four Continents Championships. During his successful junior years, he qualified for the 2006 ISU Grand Prix Final, wining the bronze medal.

“Kevin has been an important part of our national team program for the last decade. We would like to thank him for his dedication to the sport and for his innovative style of skating combined with his technical skill that inspired so many around the world,” said Debra Armstrong, CEO, Skate Canada. “Skate Canada wishes Kevin all the best as he begins a new chapter of his life.”

Reynolds helped to move the sport forward with his advanced jumping skills. In 2010, he was the first skater to land two quad jumps in a short program. He was also the first skater to land five quad jumps in competition at the 2013 ISU Four Continents Championships, with two quads in the short program and three in the free program.

Reynolds is working towards completion of his degree at the University of British Columbia. He is expected to graduate in 2019 with a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations, with a minor in Japanese Language and Culture. He will be staying involved with skating as a full-time coach at the Champs International Skating Centre of B.C.

Canada’s Stephen Gogolev wins gold at ISU Grand Prix Final

VANCOUVER, BC – Thirteen-year-old Stephen Gogolev of Toronto brushed aside a fall on his opening quad Lutz and roared to the gold medal in junior men’s competition Friday at the ISU Grand Prix Final figure skating competition.

Gogolev put on an amazing display of poise, skating and jumping skills to finish with 233.58 points. Petr Gummenik of Russia took the silver at 218.75 and Koshiro Shimada of Japan was third at 214.38.

“I can’t believe it yet, that I won this competition,” Gogolev said. “I was a bit disappointed after falling on the quad Lutz but I did everything else so I’m happy overall.”

In his free skate to the Sherlock Holmes soundtrack, Gogolev’s three quad jumps were planned at the start of the program. After the Lutz he landed the quad toe and the quad Salchow (in combo with a triple toe). His triple Axel- triple toe was also solid.

It was his second victory this season on the circuit. He won this past September in Slovakia but was fifth a few weeks later at the fourth stop in Richmond, B.C.

“I learned that you need to work on everything,” Gogolev said. “Skating skills are very important. Not just jumps, but spins and skating skills.”

In junior ice dancing, Marjorie Lajoie of Boucherville, Que., and Zachary Lagha of Greenfield Park, Que., came within 0.03 from the podium finishing fourth with 164.51.

Russia was 1-2-3. Sofia Shevchenko and Igor Eremenko won the gold with 170.66, Arina Ushakova and Maxim Nekrasov were second only 0.01 behind while Elizaveta Khudaiberdieva and Nikita Nazarov were third at 164.54.

“Technically it wasn’t perfect but the emotion was there,” said Lajoie. “We felt really confident in our performances.”

This past fall on the circuit, Lajoie and Lagha won the Richmond Junior Grand Prix stop and were second in Austria.

In men’s senior competition, world champion Nathan Chen of the U.S. was the winner with Shoma Uno of Japan second and Junhwan Cha of South Korea third.

Keegan Messing of Sherwood Park, Alta., moved from sixth to fifth.

“I skated as strong as I could and fought for everything,” said Messing. “I only made one big mistake on the triple Axel. There were some shaky elements but it was my first Grand Prix Final so there was some nervousness.”

Full results: http://www.isuresults.com/results/season1819/gpf1819/

Thirteen-year old Stephen Gogolev continues to impress at ISU Grand Prix Final

VANCOUVER, BC – Stephen Gogolev of Toronto is in second place after the short program in junior men’s competition at the ISU Grand Prix Final figure skating competition, which opened Thursday.

The 13-year-old Gogolev produced a clean performance landing his combination jump, triple toe and triple Axel for 78.82 points. Camden Pulkinen of the U.S. leads at 80.31 and Petr Gumennik of Russia is third at 76.16.

“It felt pretty good, I was confident going into the competition,” said Gogolev, who won the junior Grand Prix stop in Slovakia this past September and was fifth a few weeks later in Richmond, B.C. “There were some nerves but that’s usually the case for me.”

Russia stands 1-2-3 in junior ice dancing after the rhythm dance with Canadians Marjorie Lajoie of Boucherville, Que., and Zachary Lagha of Greenfield Park, Que., fourth. Only 1.5 points separate the top-four and four points separate the top-five.

Sofia Shevchenko and Igor Eremenko are first at 67.73, Arina Ushakova and Maxim Nekrasov second at 67.49, Elizaveta Khudaiberdieva and Nikita Nazarov third at 66.29, the Canadians follow at 66.25 and Avonley Nguyen and Vadym Kolesnik of the U.S. are fifth at 63.73.

“The technical scores were not so good but the overall performance was pretty good,” said Lajoie. “The points are so close right now that our goal is just to go out and skate well tomorrow. Our free dance is powerful.”

This past fall, Lajoie and Lagha won the Richmond Junior Grand Prix stop and were second in Austria.

Keegan Messing of Sherwood Park, Alta., is Canada’s sole entry in senior competition and he stands sixth after the men’s short program with 79.56. World champion Nathan Chen of the U.S. leads at 92.99 followed by Shoma Uno of Japan at 91.67 and Michal Brezina of the Czech Republic at 89.21.

“I fought for every element out there,” said Messing, a silver medallist at Skate Canada International last month. “I just had to pray a little bit but I stood on my feet so I’m really happy with that.”

Competition continues Friday featuring the free skates for all three Canadian entries.

Full results: http://www.isuresults.com/results/season1819/gpf1819/

Patrick Chan named Athlete Ambassador for the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final® 2018-19

VANCOUVER, BC: Skate Canada is pleased to announce that ten-time Canadian champion and three-time world champion Patrick Chan will serve as the official Athlete Ambassador during the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final® 2018-19. The event takes place from December 6-9 in Vancouver, B.C., at the Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre.

“To be named Athlete Ambassador for the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final is truly a special honour,” said Chan. “This event brings back many wonderful memories for me, and it is a privilege to represent all athletes competing in Vancouver this week.”

In his eight appearances at the Grand Prix Final, Chan medalled on four occasions, including back-to-back gold medal triumphs in 2010 and 2011. Chan won his first of a record ten Canadian titles in Vancouver in 2008, and also won his 10th in Vancouver last January.  He has captured three Olympic medals, winning silver in both the individual and team events at the Sochi Games in 2014, and gold in the team event in PyeongChang.

“We are honoured to have Patrick as our athlete ambassador for this event. Over his career he has taken part and won medals at every major skating event, as an athlete he knows what it takes to stand atop the podium,” said Debra Armstrong, CEO, Skate Canada. “Patrick has inspired Canadians and fans worldwide with his skating and this week in Vancouver we know he will leave an impact on the fans at the Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre.”

In his role of Athlete Ambassador, Chan will handle speaking engagements and media interviews, conduct appearances on behalf of competing athletes and interact with skating fans throughout the week.

Chan announced his retirement from competitive skating in April 2018. He is currently residing in Vancouver where he stays involved in the skating community through seminars and performing in skating shows across Canada.


The ISU Grand Prix Final is the concluding event of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating circuit. The series hosts six stops: United States (Skate America), Canada (Skate Canada International), Finland (Grand Prix of Helsinki), Japan (NHK Trophy), Russia (Rostelecom Cup) and France (Internationaux de France).

Skaters are awarded points based on their placements at their assigned events and the top six in each of the four disciplines advance to the Final.

The event will also include the 2018 ISU Junior Grand Prix Final. The world’s top junior skaters also collect points to qualify, through seven events which change location yearly. The top six in men’s, ladies, pair and ice dance, based on the results of the Junior Grand Prix series, advance to the Junior Final.

In total, there will be 48 entries and 72 skaters taking part in the event in both senior and junior.

Olympian Larkyn Austman wins gold at 2019 Skate Canada Challenge

EDMONTON, AB – 2018 Olympic team member Larkyn Austman of Coquitlam, B.C. returned from injury and opened her season with a gold medal performance in women’s competition Sunday at the Skate Challenge.

Austman was first in the short program and second in the free skate, for 171.33 points. Alison Schumacher of Tecumseh, Ont., was second at 163.32 and Michelle Long of Newmarket, Ont., third at 155.74.

“My goal was to win,” said Austman, who injured both feet this fall which forced her to withdraw from Skate Canada last month. “The result here has an impact on your start order at the Canadian championships (next month). That was the big stress for me. I’ve been back full training since October and I feel so much better now after some successful treatments.”

In ice dancing, Laurence Fournier Beaudry and Nikolaj Sorensen of Montreal were the victors with 192.03. Haley Sales of Kelowna, B.C. and Nikolas Wamsteeker and Langley, B.C. were second at 170.34 and Molly Lanaghan and Dmitre Razgulajevs of Ajax, Ont., were third at 158.03.

“We feel we are right on schedule with our preparations for nationals with still some room to grow,” said Sorensen. “We know we can get better but we don’t have to think about changing stuff.”

In women’s junior competition, Hannah Dawson of Ottawa hung on to top spot despite the fourth best free skate for gold with 141.28 points. Emma Bulawka of Kelowna, B.C. won the free skate to climb from seventh for the silver at 138.02. Madeline Schizas of Oakville, Ont., was third at 134.47.

“All season I’ve been doing clean skates in the long but today it went a bit downhill,” said Dawson “Still I was able to bring it back at the end and that helped me get the win. So that gives me some confidence going into nationals.”

In the men’s junior event, Alistair Lam of Hamilton didn’t win the short or free programs but wound up first overall with 168.22. Jack Dushenski of Toronto climbed from ninth to second with 159.65 and Beres Clements of Gibsons, B.C. was third at 157.70.

“It feels great to win,” said Lam, who missed part of last season including nationals due to a foot injury. He was second in the short and third in the long. “I’ve tried to focus more on my skating rather than the result and just do the best that I can do personally.”

In the junior ice dance, the new team of Alicia Fabbri of Terrebonne, Que., and Paul Ayer Brossard, Que., were the winners with 156.73 edging Yuka Orihara and Lee Royer of Burnaby, B.C. in second at 153.43. Irina Galiyanova of Toronto and Grayson Lochhead of Sweaburg, Ont. were third at 151.51.

“We didn’t have a good start to the season so we just wanted two decent skates here this weekend,” said Ayer. “Being first after the rhythm dance really motivated us and helped us keep our focus for the free.”

Full results: 2019 Skate Canada Challenge

Canadian skaters headed to Vancouver for the 2018 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final

OTTAWA, ON:  Skate Canada will have three entries, for a total of four skaters competing at the 2018 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final in Vancouver, British Columbia. Canada will be represented by one senior entry and two junior entries. The event takes place from December 6-9, 2018 at Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre and includes both the ISU Senior Grand Prix Final and the ISU Junior Grand Prix Final.

Keegan Messing, 26, Sherwood Park, Alta./Brantford, Ont., will represent Canada in the senior men category. Messing is coming off a silver medal finish at Skate Canada International and a fifth place finish at Rostelecom Cup earlier this season. He trains at Sherwood Park FSC and is coached by Ralph Burghardt.

Stephen Gogolev, 13, Toronto, Ont., will represent Canada in the junior men category and will be competing at this event for the first time. Gogolev placed fifth at JGP Canada and won gold at JGPSlovakia. He trains at the Toronto Cricket & Skating Club and is coached by Lee Barkell.

Marjorie Lajoie, 18, Boucherville, Que., and Zachary Lagha, 19, St.-Hubert, Que., will be representing Canada in the junior ice dance. The two won gold at JGP Canada and finished second at JGP Austria this season to qualify for the final. This will be their second JGP Final, having finished sixth last season. They train in Montreal, Que., with coaches Marie-France Dubreuil, Patrice Lauzon, Romain Haguenauer and Pascal Denis.

Mike Slipchuk, Skate Canada High Performance Director and Andre Bourgeois, Skate Canada NextGen Director will be the team leaders at the event. Dr. Daphne Anderson of Calgary, Alta., and physiotherapist Agnes Makowski of Toronto, Ont. will be the Canadian medical staff onsite.  Karen Howard of Regina, Sask., Jean Senft of West Vancouver, B.C., Andrea Derby of Windsor, Ont., and Karen Butcher of Greely, Ont., will be the Canadian officials at the event.

For results and full entries, please click here.

Canadian Entries at the 2018 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final

Discipline Name Age Hometown Club Coach
Senior Men Keegan Messing 26 Sherwood Park, Alta. / Brantford, Ont. Sherwood Park FSC Ralph Burghardt
Junior Men Stephen Gogolev 13 Toronto, Ont. Toronto Cricket & Skating Club Lee Barkell
Junior Ice Dance Marjorie Lajoie / Zachary Lagha 18/19 Boucherville, Que. / St-Hubert, Que. Winter Club of St. Catharines / Point Edward SC Marie-France Dubreuil, Patrice Lauzon, Romain Haguenauer, Pascal Denis

Nam Nguyen earns comeback victory at 2019 Skate Canada Challenge

EDMONTON, AB – Toronto’s Nam Nguyen soared from third place after the short program to win the gold medal on Friday in men’s senior competition at the 2019 Skate Canada Challenge figure skating competition.

Nguyen totalled 223.67 points for the victory with Bennet Toman of Brampton, Ont., second at 201.55 and Conrad Orzel of Woodbridge, Ont., the leader after the short, third at 197.01.

“It feels good to win but I wasn’t too focused on the results,” said Nguyen. “I jut wanted to put out some decent skates. After a questionable short, the long was a better fight. This is definitely a big momentum booster for my confidence.”

In senior pairs, Evelyn Walsh of London, Ont., and Trennt Michaud of Trenton, Ont., climbed from second after the short program to win the event with 160.66. Lori-Ann Matte and Thierry Ferland of Levis, Que., were second at 156.57. Mariah McCaw and Steven Adcock of Kitchener, Ont., were third at 143.89.

“We made some changes to our free skate and we were excited to see that it worked out well,” said Michaud. “We improved on everything we’ve been working on in practice. There’s still a lot to improve but we like where we stand with the nationals a month away.”

In junior pairs, Quebec skaters were 1-2.  Chloe Choinard and Mathieu Ostiguy were first with 128.70 and Chloe Panetta and Benjamin Mimar second at 124.02. Ontario’s Patricia Andrew and Paxton Fletcher were third at 119.52.

“Neither of our programs were 100 percent perfect,” said Ostiguy. “Our free tonight wasn’t our best showing but our goal was just to overcome some recent challenges in the program and we improved in some areas that make this an overall positive experience.”

Competition at the Terwillegar Community Recreation Centre continues through to Sunday.

Full results: 2019 Skate Canada Challenge