EDMONTON – Canadian champion Nam Nguyen of Toronto won the gold medal in men’s competition to highlight Friday’s action at the 2020 Skate Canada Challenge.

Nguyen was first in both the short program and Friday’s free skate totalling 236.68 points. Eric Liu of Edmonton was second at 209.76 and Joseph Phan of Laval, Que., third at 209.43.

“My confidence is up this year,” said Nguyen, also second at Skate Canada International last month. “The spins and jumps have been better and everything I do between the elements as well. There is still a lot of work to be done but I’m on the right track towards the world championships.”

Evelyn Walsh of London, Ont., and Trennt Michaud of Trenton, Ont., took the pairs title in the last event of the evening.

“We were pleased with the fight we put out there,” said Walsh. “It wasn’t our best performance but we worked well together.”

The first junior final was held and Patricia Andrew and Zachary Daleman of Brantford, Ont., took the gold medal in pairs.

Novice

In men’s novice competition, Maksim Chelmaev of Laval, Que., soared from eighth after the short program to win the gold with 123.64. Shohei Law of Burnaby, B.C., was second at 123.24 and Brendan Wong of Burnaby third at 122.79.

“It was an emotional day,” said Chelmaev. “I went out there in attack mode and to come back with a strong performance. I gave everything I had.”

Sara-Maude Dupuis of Anjou, Que., also made a big comeback climbing from fourth to win the women’s event with 134.60 points. Lia Pereira of Milton, Ont., was second at 130.50 and Michelle Lee of Hamilton third at 127.15.

“I was proud I was able to control my nerves,” said Dupuis. “I’m still looking to improve my technical levels and my spins for the nationals.”

In ice dancing, Sandrine Gauthier and Quentin Thieren of St-Bruno, Que., won the gold medal with 100.43 points followed by Erica Estepa and Nolen Hickey of Brampton, Ont., with 99.92 and Mia Saunders and William Oddson of Calgary third at 99.04.

“We didn’t expect to do this well in the free dance,” said Thieren. “We did pretty well in general and it was a good performance. We kept focused but we know there is still a lot that can be improved.”

In pairs, Ashlyn Schmitz and Tristan Taylor of Regina placed first with 101.46. Lily Wilberforce and Aidan Wright of Kitchener, Ont., were second at 93.34 and Charlotte Giraldeau and Éliott Goulet of St-Eustache, Que., were third at 88.10.

Pre-novice

The competition was also the national championships for the pre-novice skaters.

For the girls, Rose Théroux of Chambly, Que., was the victor with 100.59 followed by Malyka Keeley of Campbellton, N.B., in second at 97.17 and Natasha Hewitt of Toronto third at 95.16.

“I did my job,” said Théroux who also moved eighth after the short to the winner’s circle. “I was proud of my performance. I’ve worked a lot on improving my jumps in particular.”

In pairs, Melyna Dagenais Guay of Farnham, Que., and Anthony Vézina of Varennes, Que., were first at 74.66 with Noémie Rolland and Marc-Olivier Laroche of St-Eustache, Que., second at 74.39 and Alexanne Joanis of Chambly and Charly Laliberté-Laurent of Boucherville, Que., third at 71.14.

“Our strength were the lifts,” said Dagenais Guay. “We felt comfortable and they were powerful.”

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

Full results: 2020 Skate Canada Challenge – Skate Canada