Shanghai, China (February 3, 2024) – Canadian pair skaters Deanna Stellato-Dudek of Chicago, USA and Maxime Deschamps of Vaudreuil-Dorion, Que., won their first major championships gold medal on Saturday in Shanghai, China at the ISU Four Continents Championships, setting themselves up nicely for the World Championships in Montreal this March.
The two-time Canadian national champions had a healthy lead after their short program, and despite a couple of mistakes in their free skate, were able to retain the lead with a score of 129.32 and a total score of 198.80 to take the win. Last year’s champions Riku Miura and Ryuichi Kihara of Japan settled for silver (190.77), while Ellie Kam and Danny O’Shea of the USA captured bronze (187.28).
“We’re very happy with the result. We had some of our reliable elements cross us a bit – I really hurt my arm on the twist and it was hurting throughout the whole program, so we were happy with the fight that we were able to give despite that,” said Stellato-Dudek. “There is definitely still a lot of growth in the performance, we know we can do a lot better than that, and we’re looking forward to doing that at Worlds.”
Lia Pereira of Milton, Ont., and Trennt Michaud of Trenton, Ont., had a shortened training period preparing for this competition due to a back injury that Michaud sustained just following nationals, so were pleased with their fifth-place finish and total score of 182.05.
“We’re very proud of ourselves for this long program today. We really wanted to showcase our performance. We’ve been working with our choreographers and coaching team at home to really push the performance aspect, and I think we did that today, so we’re really happy,” said Pereira.
Kelly Ann Laurin of St-Jerôme, Que., and Loucas Éthier of Deux-Montagnes, Que., finished in eighth-place with a total score of 174.47.
Wesley Chiu of Vancouver, B.C., was the top-ranked Canadian finisher in the men’s competition, finishing seventh with a total score of 240.38.
“It’s been really eye-opening to be with all these amazing athletes. It’s not often you get to skate with five of them in a single warm-up,” said Chiu who skated in the final flight with the top skaters. “But when the music came on, and it was my turn to skate, I felt my heart rate go down and felt a little bit more like myself. In the warm-up, my legs were feeling like jello, so I was able to tap back into my own training and do everything how I do normally.”
Roman Sadovsky of Vaughan, Ont., who skated in his first international competition this season due to a series of travel mishaps this fall, finished in 10th place with a total score of 217.83, while Conrad Orzel of Toronto, Ont., finished 17th.
“There are definitely a lot of improvements that I can do here and there, and just optimize the program overall. I was just super pleased that I had the opportunity to do it somewhere, and take notes, and have the opportunity to apply those notes in training later on,” said Sadovsky who last competed at the Four Continents Championships in 2020 where he finished 16th.
2022 Olympic silver medallist Yuma Kagiyama of Japan won gold (307.58) with a commanding 32-point lead over the silver medallist, his teammate Shun Sato (274.59). Junhwan Cha of Korea took the bronze (272.95).
For full results please click here.