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Canadian Ice Dancers Crack Top 10 at ISU Junior Grand Prix

GDANSK, Poland – Hailey Yu and Brendan Giang of Burnaby, B.C., produced the sixth best free dance of the day to climb from 12th to 10th place overall in ice dancing on Saturday to conclude the sixth stop on the ISU figure skating circuit.

Irina Khavronina and Dan Cirisano of Russia collected their second win of the season with Isabella Flores and Dimitry Tsarevski of the U.S. second and Angelina Kudryavtseva and Ilia Karankevich of Cyprus in third.

‘’This was a big step up from our short program,’’ said Yu, 16. ‘’In our minds we were really set on what we had to do. We still need to gain more consistency on our twizzles and build more confidence.’’

Chaima Ben Khelifa of Laval, Que., and Everest Zhu of Contestogo, Ont., posted the 10th best free dance but remained 11th overall.

‘’We attacked the program more than we normally do and it felt like we gave it our all,’’ said Zhu, 18. ‘’There were still some bobbles, but we are very pleased with the performance. We took the feedback we got from our first event earlier this season and really incorporated that into our skating.’’

Both Canadian ice dance couples are in their first season on the ISU Junior Grand Prix figure skating circuit and placed eighth at their respective season opening events last month.

The seventh stop on the circuit is this upcoming Thursday to Saturday in Linz, Austria.

Full results: http://www.isuresults.com/results/season2122/jgppol2021/

Canadian Pairs Place Sixth at ISU Junior Grand Prix

GDANSK, Poland – The new Canadian pairs combo of Chloe Panetta and Kieran Thrasher took sixth spot on Friday at the sixth stop on the ISU Junior Grand Prix figure skating circuit.

It was a Russian medal sweep in the event led by Ekaterina Chikmareva and Matvei Ianchenkov who roared from fourth after the short program to take the gold with 171.97 points. It was their second victory this season.

Panetta and Thrasher, in their first season together and at their first Grand Prix, finished with 129.75 points. Although they were also sixth after their short program, there was no doubt in their minds the free skate was vastly superior.

‘’This was almost an exact replica of what we’ve been doing in training the past two weeks so we are very proud of what we’ve done,’’ said Panetta, 18 from Oakville, Ont., about the free skate. ‘’We were happy to bounce back from a more tentative short program.’’

‘’That nervousness left after that first program and it really showed,’’ added Thrasher, 17, from Amherstburg, Ont.

The Russians were 1-2 in the women’s event. Sofia Akateva took the gold for her second win this season and Elizaveta Kulikova was second.

Catherine Carle of Georgetown, Ont., climbed from 10th after the short program to ninth overall.

In ice dancing, two Canadian couples in their first season on the circuit gained more valuable experience. After Friday’s rhythm dance, Chaima Ben Khelifa of Laval, Que., and Everest Zhu of Contestogo, Ont., are 11th and Hailey Yu and Brendan Giang of Burnaby, B.C., are 12th.

The free dance is on Saturday. Canada has no entries in the men’s event.

Full results: http://www.isuresults.com/results/season2122/jgppol2021/