Kent & Laliberté-Laurent Bring Home Bronze from Junior Grand Prix in Hungary

Budapest, Hungary (September 23, 2023) – Martina Ariano Kent of Mount Royal, Que., and Charly Laliberté-Laurent, of Boucherville, Que., are coming home with their second ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating event medal after capturing bronze in the pair event this Saturday in Budapest, Hungary.

Ariano Kent, 16, and Laliberté-Laurent, 17, were in a battle for the silver medal with Violetta Sierova and Ivan Khobta of Ukraine but had to settle for bronze after finishing with a total score of 153.59 – just 0.18 points behind the Ukrainians score of 153.77. Anastasiia Metelkina and Luka Berulava of Georgia, gold medallist at the Junior Grand Prix event in Istanbul, were victorious again, taking home gold with a total score of 190.45.

“I was really happy with our performance,” said Kent following the free skate. “We had to fight for it a little bit more, but I’m glad that we had a few elements that were better than last time, so I’m happy with that.”

When asked what they’ll be looking to work on for the next competition, Laliberté-Laurent added: “I think we need to work harder on our cardio and our speed between our elements. We’ve worked really hard on our technical elements, but less on our cardio and speed.”

Ava Kemp, 15, and Yohnatan Elizarov, 19, both of Winnipeg, Man., weren’t far behind their teammates, finishing fourth with a total score of 132.93.

In ice dance, Dana Sabatini-Speciale, 17, of Springwater, Ont., and Nicholas Buelow, 16, of Barrie, Ont., finished fifth overall with a total score of 139.51, improving on their eighth-place finish at the Junior Grand Prix event in Turkey.

“I was really proud of our performances – I think it’s a step up from Turkey – both technically and component-wise, and I’m just excited for what’s to come,” said Sabatini-Speciale. “I think what we learned this week, and what we tried to improve on after Turkey, is right from the get-go, to on-the-spot perform and attack in each practice, and to go from there for each performance – I think that definitely helped us.”

Caroline Kravets, 15, of Petersburg, Ont., and Jacob Stark, 17, of Waterloo, Ont., made their international debut and finished 12th overall with a total score of 116.55.

Iryna Pidgaina and Artem Koval of Ukraine won gold with a total score of 149.42, while Yahli Pedersen and Jeffrey Chen of the USA took silver with a total score of 146.28, and Dania Mouaden and Theo Bigot of France took bronze with a total score of 146.03.

David Howes, 16, of Winnipeg, Man., was sitting in seventh following his short program in the men’s event, but a challenging free skate dropped him down to 12th overall. He finished with a total score of 159.33.

Hyungyeom Kim of Korea won gold with a total score of 222.15 while Naoki Rossi of Switzerland took silver with a total score of 204.79, and Haru Kakiuchi of Japan took bronze with a total score of 200.82.

Competing in her first international competition, Aleksa Volkova, 14, of Lac-Brôme, Que., finished 17th overall in the women’s event with a total score of 130.98.

Korean skaters took the first two spots in the women’s event with Jia Shin winning gold with a total score of 200.74, and Yuseong Kim taking silver with a total score of 176.98. Ayumi Shibayama of Japan captured bronze with a total score of 176.59.

The next Junior Grand Prix of the season takes place this upcoming week in Gdansk, Poland from September 27-30, 2023 and will feature a diverse group of young and promising athletes across various categories including women, men, pair, and ice dance.

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