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Skate Canada qualifies five entries for ISU Grand Prix Final

OTTAWA, ON: Skate Canada has qualified five entries for a total of eight skaters for the ISU Grand Prix Final taking place in Marseille, France, from December 8-11, 2016. This is the first time that Canada has qualified a skater in every discipline and will be the biggest team Skate Canada has ever sent to the Final. The ISU Senior Grand Prix Final will be held jointly with the ISU Junior Grand Prix Final.

In senior men, Patrick Chan, 25, Toronto, Ont., qualified in second. Chan won the gold medal at Skate Canada International and at the Cup of China.

Kaetlyn Osmond, 20, Marystown, Nfld./Edmonton, Alta., qualified fourth in senior ladies, having earned the silver medal at both Skate Canada International and the Cup of China.

Meagan Duhamel, 30, Lively, Ont., and Eric Radford, 31, Balmertown, Ont., qualified in first in the senior pairs discipline. Duhamel and Radford won gold at both Skate Canada International and the NHK Trophy.

Also in senior pairs, Julianne Séguin, 20, Longueuil, Que., and Charlie Bilodeau, 23, Trois-Pistoles, Que., qualified sixth. Séguin and Bilodeau won gold at Skate America and placed fifth at the Rostelecom Cup.

Senior ice dancers Tessa Virtue, 27, London, Ont., and Scott Moir, 29, Ilderton, Ont., qualified in first place. Virtue and Moir won gold at Skate Canada International and at the NHK Trophy.

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

Canada did not qualify any entries for the ISU Junior Grand Prix Final.

For results and full entries please click here.

CANADIAN ENTRIES AT THE 2016 ISU GRAND PRIX FINAL

Discipline Name Age Hometown Club Coach
Senior Men Patrick Chan 25 Toronto, Ont. Granite Club Marina Zoueva / Oleg Epstein / Johnny Johns
Senior Ladies Kaetlyn Osmond 20 Marystown, Nfld. & Edmonton, Alta. Ice Palace FSC Ravi Walia
Senior Pairs Meagan Duhamel / Eric Radford 30/31 Lively, Ont. / Balmertown, Ont. CPA Saint-Léonard / CPA Saint-Léonard Richard Gauthier / Bruno Marcotte / Sylvie Fullum
Senior Pairs Julianne Séguin / Charlie Bilodeau 20/23 Longueuil, Que. / Trois-Pistoles, Que. CPA Longueuil / CPA Chambly Josée Picard
Senior Ice Dance Tessa Virtue / Scott Moir 27/29 London, Ont. / Ilderton, Ont. Regroupement élite de patinage artistique de Montréal / Regroupement élite de patinage artistique de Montréal Marie-France Dubreuil / Patrice Lauzon

Virtue and Moir win gold medal at NHK Trophy

SAPPORO, Japan – Tessa Virtue of London, Ont., and Scott Moir of Ilderton, Ont., won the gold medal in ice dancing on Sunday at the NHK Trophy to conclude the sixth stop on the ISU Grand Prix figure skating circuit.

Virtue and Moir, two-time world champions and the 2010 Olympic champs, totalled a personal best 195.84 points for the victory. Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron of France were second at 186.66 and Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte of Italy were third at 180.42.

‘’We are very pleased with our performance today,’’ said Virtue. ‘’It’s always a pleasure skating in front of a Japanese crowd. We’re excited to build off this momentum towards the Grand Prix final.’’

It was Canada’s second victory of the competition. On Saturday, Meagan Duhamel of Lively, Ont., and Eric Radford of Balmertown, Ont., took the pairs title.

The ISU Grand Prix Final featuring the top-six in each of the four events from this season takes place December 8-11 in Marseilles, France. Skate Canada will announce the team later this week.

Full results: ISU GP NHK Trophy 2016.

Canadian team headed to Japan for final stop on ISU Grand Prix circuit

OTTAWA, ON: Skate Canada will send five entries, for a total of seven skaters to the sixth and final stop of the 2016-2017 ISU Grand Prix circuit, the 2016 NHK Trophy. Canada will have one entry per discipline in ladies, pairs and ice dance, and two entries in the men’s discipline. The event takes place from November 25-27, 2016, at the Makomanai Sekisui Heim Ice Arena in Sapporo, Japan.

Nam Nguyen, 18, Toronto, Ont., is the first of two Canadian men entries. This will be his first time competing at this event. This season, Nguyen placed fifth at the 2016 U.S. International Figure Skating Classic and sixth at Skate America. He is coached by David Glynn in San Jose, CA, USA.

Elladj Baldé, 26, Montreal, Que., is the second Canadian men entry. Baldé has previously placed sixth at this event in 2014 and 11th in 2015. This season, he placed eighth at his first event, the U.S. International Figure Skating Classic, followed by a sixth place finish at his first ISU Grand Prix of the season, the Rostelecom Cup. Baldé trains in Montreal, Que., with his coach Bruno Marcotte.

Canadian champion Alaine Chartrand, 20, Prescott, Ont., is the Canadian entry in the ladies category. This will be her first time competing at this event. She started this season winning the silver medal at the 2016 Autumn Classic International, and earned a fifth place finish at the 2016 Skate Canada International. Chartrand is coached by Michelle Leigh and Brian Orser.

Two-time World Champions and Olympic silver medallists (team) Meagan Duhamel, 30, Lively, Ont., and Eric Radford, 31, Balmertown, Ont., are the Canadian pair entry. They are two-time defending champions at this event. Duhamel and Radford won their first two competitions this season, the Finlandia Trophy and Skate Canada International. The five-time consecutive Canadian champions are coached by Richard Gauthier, Bruno Marcotte, and Sylvie Fullum in Saint-Léonard, Que.

Olympic and World champions Tessa Virtue, 27, London, Ont., and Scott Moir, 29, Ilderton, Ont., are the Canadian entry in ice dance. They previously competed at this event in 2007 and won the silver medal. In their return to competition this season, they won the gold medal at both the 2016 Autumn Classic International and the 2016 Skate Canada International. Virtue and Moir are coached by Marie-France Dubreuil and Patrice Lauzon in Montreal, Que.

Mike Slipchuk, Skate Canada High Performance Director, will travel with the team as team leader. Dr. Ed Pilat of Winnipeg, Man., and physiotherapist Mike McMurray of Oak Bluff, Man., will be the Canadian medial staff onsite. Leanna Caron of Timmins, Ont., and Reaghan Fawcett-Fortin of Aurora, Ont., will be the Canadian officials at the event.

For results and full entries please visit www.isu.org.

CANADIAN ENTRIES AT 2016 NHK TROPHY

Discipline Name Age Hometown Club Coach
Men Nam Nguyen 18 Toronto, Ont. Toronto Cricket Skating & Curling Club David Glynn
Men Elladj Baldé 26 Montreal, Que. CPA Anjou Kinsmen Bruno Marcotte
Ladies Alaine Chartrand 20 Prescott, Ont. Nepean Skating Club Michelle Leigh / Brian Orser
Pairs Meagan Duhamel / Eric Radford 30/31 Lively, Ont. / Balmertown, Ont. CPA Saint-Léonard / CPA Saint-Léonard Richard Gauthier / Bruno Marcotte / Sylvie Fullum
Ice Dance Tessa Virtue / Scott Moir 27/29 London, Ont. / Ilderton, Ont. Ilderton SC / Ilderton SC Marie-France Dubreuil / Patrice Lauzon

Canadians spin more gold at Skate Canada International

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. – Patrick Chan of Toronto and ice dancers Tessa Virtue of London, Ont., and Scott Moir of Ilderton, Ont., won gold medals on Saturday evening to conclude Skate Canada International.

In men’s competition, Chan posted the second best free skate but hung on to top spot with 266.95 points. He edged Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan who won the free skate to climb from fourth to second at 263.06.

Kevin Reynolds of Coquitlam, B.C., landed three of his four quad jumps and took the bronze medal at 245.06. It is his first Grand Prix medal in his career.

Chan entered his highly anticipated free skate which was scheduled to include three quad jumps. He landed one, fell on the quad Salchow, which he was attempting for the first time in competition, and tripled the last one. Still he got strong scores from the judges for his artistic performance.

‘’It was a bit rough,’’ admitted Chan, a three-time world champion. ‘’I had a great opening but anytime you put in a new quad it feels different. The additional pressure of having it tired me out and you could see I faded as the program went along.

‘’Still it’s a great start to the season and I feel it’s a well deserved win.’’

Reynolds was at his first Grand Prix since 2012.

‘’It’s great to be on the podium in my first Grand Prix in many years,’’ he said. ‘’And to do it in such a high pressure environment with skaters like Patrick and Yuzuru makes feel really confident going forward.’’

Liam Firus of North Vancouver was ninth.

In ice dancing, Virtue and Moir ranked second in the free dance and held on to first with 189.06. Madison Chock and Evan Bates of the U.S., took silver at 188.24 while Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier of Toronto were third at 182.57.

‘’It was mixed emotions out there for us,’’ said Moir. ‘’It wasn’t kind of the moment we really wanted but the fans really helped us through that one. At the end we were proud of it.’’

Virtue said they rejigged the program after the Autumn Classic event in Montreal earlier this month. The couple are back in action this season for the first time since the 2014 Olympic Games.

“We’ve made some great strides with this free dance,’’ she said. ‘’Both technically and emotionally we went back to the drawing board and really got back to the intention of each movement and we made a lot of improvements.’’

Alexandra Paul of Midhurst, Ont., and Mitchell Islam of Barrie, Ont., were eighth.

Canada ends the competition with seven medals. Earlier Saturday, Meagan Duhamel of Lively, Ont., and Eric Radford of Balmertown, Ont., won the pairs event with Lubov Ilyushechkina and Dylan Moscovitch of Toronto third. Kaetlyn Osmond of Marystown, N.L. won silver in women’s competition.

Full results: 2016 Skate Canada International

Canadians blast out of the gates at Skate Canada International

MISSISSAUGA, Ont. – Patrick Chan, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir as well as Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford are all in first place after their respective short programs Friday at Skate Canada International.

Duhamel and Radford earned 78.39 points with China’s Xiaoyu Yu and Hao Zhang of China in second at 69.43. Lubov Ilyushechkina and Dylan Moscovitch of Toronto are third at 67.53.

The two-time world champions were most excited about landing their new throw triple Axel.

‘’Landing the throw triple Axel is a huge confidence boost,’’ said Radford. ‘’We had to prove to ourselves that we were capable of doing it. It’s a nice reassuring feeling and we know we can do it even better.’’

The pair paid tribute to the Hershey Centre venue. They executed their first clean short program on the same ice in 2011.

‘’We’ve had some of the most amazing memories in our career here,’’ said Duhamel. ‘’It’s a special rink, we love it. The crowd was unbelievable right from the second we stepped on the ice for the warm-up.’’

Brittany Jones and Joshua Reagan of Toronto are seventh.

In ice dancing, Virtue and Moir are in first place after the short dance. They almost equalled their personal best score with 77.23 just off the 77.72 they skated in their comeback a couple of weeks ago at the Autumn Classic in Montreal.

‘’This is the start of our journey towards the 2018 Olympics,’’ said Moir, from Ilderton, Ont. ‘’We were really thrilled with our skate. We left some points on the table level wise which we’ll look to improve. For the end of October we are very pleased.’’

Madison Chock and Evan Bates of the U.S. are second at 76.21 and Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier of Toronto third at 72.12. Alexandra Paul of Midhurst, Ont., and Mitchell Islam of Barrie, Ont., are eighth.

In the men’s short, Chan compiled 90.56 points to stand first. Takahito Mura of Japan is second at 81.24 and Kevin Reynolds of Coquitlam. B.C., stands third at 80.57 ahead of Olympic champ Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan. Liam Firus of North Vancouver is 10th.

‘’I was committed to staying tight in the air and saving the landings,’’ said Chan. ‘’Landing that quad triple gave me a ton of energy going into the triple Axel. The rest of the program I was really pleased with, especially the footwork.’’

In the women’s short program, Kaetlyn Osmond of Marystown, N.L., set a personal best 74.33 to stand in second place. Only world champion Evgenia Medvedeva of Russia beat the Canadian earning 76.24. Elizaveta Tuktamysheva of Russia is third at 66.69.

‘’It was a long time coming to finally do a short program like that,’’ said Osmond, whose previous best was set in 2013. ‘’It feels so good to finally get a personal best again and skate great again. I’ve been working towards it for so many years.’’

Canadian champion Alaine Chartrand of Prescott, Ont., is sixth but still in the medal hunt at 62.15. Only six points separate seventh from third.

All four free skates are on Saturday.

Full results: 2016 Skate Canada International

Skaters from around the world headed to Mississauga, Ontario, for 2016 Skate Canada International

OTTAWA, ON: Canada’s top figure skaters are headed to Mississauga, Ont., this week to compete against some of world’s best at the 2016 Skate Canada International. The event takes place October 28-30, 2016, at the Hershey Centre. Canada will have 11 entries (three entries per discipline in men, pairs and ice dance, and two entries in ladies) for a total of 17 skaters.

Skate Canada International is the second of six competitions on the International Skating Union (ISU) Grand Prix of Figure Skating circuit, which qualifies skaters for the ISU Grand Prix Final, taking place December 8-11 in Marseille, France.

Three-time World Champion and double Olympic silver medallist (men’s and team) Patrick Chan, 25, Toronto, Ont., is the first of three Canadian entries in men’s. This will be his eighth time competing at this event, having previously won the gold medal five times and the silver medal once. Chan won silver at his first event this season, the Finlandia Trophy. The eight-time Canadian champion is coached by Marina Zoueva, Oleg Epstein and Johnny Johns and trains in Canton, MI, USA.

Canadian silver medallist Liam Firus, 24, North Vancouver, B.C., is the second Canadian entry in men’s. He placed 11th at this event in 2014 and 10th in 2012. This season, Firus placed fifth at his first event, the Nebelhorn Trophy. Firus is coached by Bruno Marcotte in Sainte-Julie, Que.

Olympic silver medallist (team) Kevin Reynolds, 26, Coquitlam, B.C., rounds out the Canadian entries in the men’s discipline. Reynolds previously competed at this event in 2010 and placed fourth. This season, Reynolds won the silver medal at his first event, the Ondrej Nepela Trophy. He is coached by Joanne McLeod in Burnaby, B.C.

Canadian champion Alaine Chartrand, 20, Prescott, Ont., is the first of two Canadian entries in the ladies’ category. Chartrand previously competed at this event in 2014 and placed seventh. She began this season winning the silver medal at the 2016 Autumn Classic International. Chartrand is coached by Michelle Leigh and Brian Orser.

Olympic silver medallist (team) Kaetlyn Osmond, 20, Marystown, Nfld./Edmonton, Alta., will be the second Canadian entry in the ladies’ discipline. Osmond won this event in 2012 and placed 11th at this event last season. This season, she won the gold medal at her first event, the Finlandia Trophy. The 2016 Canadian bronze medallist is coached by Ravi Walia and trains in Edmonton, Alta.

Two-time World Champions and Olympic silver medallists (team) Meagan Duhamel, 30, Lively, Ont., and Eric Radford, 31, Balmertown, Ont., lead the Canadian pair entries. This will be their seventh time competing at this event, having won gold in 2014 and 2015 and medalled five years consecutively. Duhamel and Radford won their first event this season, the Finlandia Trophy. The five-time consecutive Canadian champions are coached by Richard Gauthier, Bruno Marcotte, and Sylvie Fullum in Saint-Léonard, Que.

Lubov Ilyushechkina, 24, Moscow, Russia, and Dylan Moscovitch, 32, Toronto, Ont., are the second Canadian pair entry, and will be competing at this event for the first time. The 2016 Canadian bronze medallists won the silver medal at their first event this season, the Nebelhorn Trophy. Ilyushechkina and Moscovitch are coached by Lee Barkell, Bryce Davison and Tracy Wilson in Toronto, Ont.

Brittany Jones, 20, Toronto, Ont., and Joshua Reagan, 26, Toronto, Ont., will be the third Canadian entry in pair. Jones and Reagan placed seventh at this event in 2014. This season, they won the gold medal at the 2016 U.S. International Figure Skating Classic. Jones and Reagan are coached by Bryce Davison in Hamilton, Ont.

Olympic and World champions Tessa Virtue, 27, London, Ont., and Scott Moir, 29, Ilderton, Ont., are the first of three Canadian entries in ice dance. They have previously competed at this event six times, winning the gold medal on five occasions and the silver medal once. Virtue and Moir returned to international competition at the 2016 Autumn Classic International where they won the gold medal. They are coached by Marie-France Dubreuil and Patrice Lauzon in Montreal, Que.

Canadian silver medallists Piper Gilles, 24, Toronto, Ont., and Paul Poirier, 24, Unionville, Ont., will be the second Canadian entry in ice dance. They have previously competed at this event twice, winning the silver medal in 2014 and placing fourth in 2012. Gilles and Poirier won the bronze medal at their first event this season, the Nebelhorn Trophy. They are coached by Carol Lane and Juris Razgulajevs in Scarborough, Ont.

Alexandra Paul, 25, Midhurst, Ont., and Mitchell Islam, 26, Barrie, Ont., are the third Canadian entry in ice dance. This will be their fourth time competing at this event, having placed sixth in 2015, fifth in 2013 and fourth in 2010. This season, Paul and Islam won the bronze medal at the 2016 U.S. International Figure Skating Classic. They train in Montreal, Que., with coaches Marie-France Dubreuil, Patrice Lauzon and Romain Haguenauer.

Carolyn Allwright of Kitchener, Ont., and Manon Perron of Boucherville, Que., will be the Canadian team leaders at the event. Dr. Julia Alleyne of Toronto, Ont., and physiotherapist Agnes Makowski of Toronto, Ont., will be the Canadian medical staff onsite. Karen Howard of Regina, Sask., Sylvain Guibord of Brossard, Que., Lynne Dey of Edmonton, Alta., and Andrea Derby of Windsor, Ont., will be the Canadian officials at the event.

Practices will be streamed live on the Skate Canada Dailymotion page.

For results and full entries please visit www.skatecanada.ca or www.isu.org.

CANADIAN ENTRIES AT 2016 SKATE CANADA INTERNATIONAL

Discipline Name Age Hometown Club Coach
Men Patrick Chan 25 Toronto, Ont. Granite Club Marina Zoueva / Oleg Epstein / Johnny Johns
Men Liam Firus 24 North Vancouver, B.C. Vancouver SC Bruno Marcotte
Men Kevin Reynolds 26 Coquitlam, B.C. Vancouver SC Joanne McLeod
Ladies Alaine Chartrand 20 Prescott, Ont. Nepean Skating Club Michelle Leigh/ Brian Orser
Ladies Kaetlyn Osmond 20 Marystown, Nfld. & Edmonton, Alta. Ice Palace FSC Ravi Walia
Pairs Meagan Duhamel / Eric Radford 30/31 Lively, Ont. / Balmertown, Ont. CPA Saint-Léonard / CPA Saint-Léonard Richard Gauthier / Bruno Marcotte / Sylvie Fullum
Pairs Lubov Ilyushechkina / Dylan Moscovitch 24/32 Moscow, Russia / Toronto, Ont. Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club / Toronto Cricket, Skating and Curling Club Lee Barkell / Bryce Davison / Tracy Wilson
Pairs Brittany Jones / Joshua Reagan 20/26 Toronto, Ont. / Toronto, Ont. Hamilton SC / Hamilton SC Bryce Davison
Ice Dance Tessa Virtue / Scott Moir 27/29 London, Ont. / Ilderton, Ont. Ilderton SC / Ilderton SC Marie-France Dubreuil / Patrice Lauzon
Ice Dance Piper Gilles / Paul Poirier 24/24 Toronto, Ont. / Unionville, Ont. Scarboro FSC / Scarboro FSC Carol Lane / Juris Razgulajevs
Ice Dance Alexandra Paul / Mitchell Islam 25/26 Midhurst, Ont. / Barrie, Ont. Barrie SC / Barrie SC Marie-France Dubreuil / Patrice Lauzon / Romain Haguenauer

Week in Skating Photos: New Beginnings

Canada kicked off the first skating event of the 2016/2017 season with the Autumn Classic International #ACI16

Meanwhile Piper and Paul sees Uniqlo’s thread that connects us all, at the first Canadian store.

Lacing up our skates for another week

With great friends to share the ice with.

#canskate #skatemom #threeamigos

A photo posted by Dana (@sneekydd) on

Look both ways then stop, turn or spin.

#CanSkate starts tonight @ #Rec Complex

A photo posted by Selkirk Skating Club (@selkirk_skating_club) on

Ice skating is beaver tested and approved.

The next step is to join the parachute bubble with our CanSkaters.

Thank you to all the #ACI16 volunteers, we could not have done it without you.

#skatecanada #kissandcry #volunteering #alwaysbusy

A photo posted by Sandra Ercoli (@s.ercoli2909) on

Like Tessa and Scott, you don’t have to cool to rule our world.

Welcome back. #tessaandscott #danielleearlphotography

A photo posted by Danielle Earl (@danielleearlphotography) on

We hope to see you again at future events.

More greatness at #aci16 @meaganduhamel @ericradford85 @jayde0425 @skate_canada

A photo posted by Maria Gilker (@mgilker0202) on

Have you seen last week’s Week in Skating Photos: “Thanks Coach” blog? Tag #SkateCanada and #CanSkate to be featured in our next blog.

Follow Skate Canada on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for more pics all week long!

Golden comeback for Virtue and Moir; Séguin and Bilodeau win pairs

PIERREFONDS, Que. – Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir completed a triumphant return to competition on Saturday winning the gold medal in ice dancing at the 2016 Autumn Classic International.

It was also a golden return for Julianne Séguin of Longueuil, Que., and Charlie Bilodeau of Trois-Pistoles, Que., in pairs. Alaine Chartrand of Prescott, Ont., added a silver in women’s competition.

In their first competition since a silver medal performance at the 2014 Winter Olympics, Virtue and Moir totalled 189.20 points, just under two points from their personal best. Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker of the U.S. were second at 160.50 and Laurence Fournier Beaudry and Nikolaj Sorensen of Denmark third at 152.00.

‘’We are so pleased with how we skated,’’ said Moir, from Ilderton, Ont. ‘’I had to work a lot harder than I have in the past three weeks for this program just to get through it. That was just nerves and pressure that comes with this quote-unquote comeback.’’

‘’What’s so exciting about our material this season is that it has so much room to grow,’’ added Virtue, from London, Ont. ‘’We’ve been really focused on the technical side. Now it’s a great opportunity in the next little while to get back to the emotional connection.’’

Carolane Soucisse of Chateauguay, Que., and Shane Firus of Barrie, Ont., were seventh and Haley Sales of Burnaby, B.C., and Nikolas Wamsteeker of Langley, B.C., ninth.

In pairs, Séguin and Bilodeau took the title with 208.30. Vanessa James and Morgan Ciprès of France followed at 198.90, Marissa Castelli and Mervin Tran of the U.S. were third at 173.62 and Camille Ruest of Rimouski, Que., and Drew Wolfe of Montreal, Que., were fourth at 159.28.

‘’For our first competition since nationals (January 2016) it was a success,’’ said Séguin. ‘’We really wanted to have a strong start to the season.’’

In their first season at the senior level last winter, they won two Grand Prix medals. However just prior to the world championships, Séguin was injured in training and the pair didn’t go to Boston.

‘’There’s always a certain worry when you comeback from an injury,’’ said Bilodeau. ‘’We felt today we picked up where we left off and will continue to progress. This is preparatory competition for us but it gives us a big boost in confidence.’’

Chartrand made a spectacular comeback to nearly snare the gold in women’s competition. She jumped from sixth after the short program producing the best score in the free skate to rocket up the standings.

Mirai Nagasu of the U.S. won the gold medal with 189.11 points, Chartrand earned 186.11 and Elizabet Tursynbaeva of Kazakhstan took the bronze with 172.46.

‘’To have a long program like this at my first international this season is a really good starting place,’’’ said Chartrand. ‘’It’ll only get better. I felt in both programs I really attacked everything and I kept that fighting attitude all the way through.’’

Michelle Long of Newmarket, Ont., was 11th and Larkyn Austman of Coquitlam, B.C., 12th.

In men’s competition, Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan won the gold medal decisively with 260.57 points.

Keegan Messing of Sherwood Park, Alta., was fourth and Bennet Toman of Brampton, Ont., fifth.

Full results: 2016 Autumn Classic International.

Great start for Séguin and Bilodeau; Canadian juniors with two gold at 2016 Autumn Classic International

PIERREFONDS, Que. – Canadian pairs Julianne Séguin of Longueuil, Que., and Charlie Bilodeau of Trois-Pistoles, Que., showed fine form in their season debut on Friday to stand first after the short program at the 2016 Autumn Classic International figure skating competition.

Séguin and Bilodeau, who produced an impressive first-season at the senior level last winter only to miss the world championships due to injury, earned 71.40 points. Marissa Castelli and Mervin Tran of the U.S. are second at 67.50 and Vanessa James and Morgan Cipres of France third at 65.58.

“It was pretty amazing, the crowd was with us before we even skated. We’re glad to be back in full force with an excellent performance,’’ said Séguin who suffered a bone bruise in a fall last winter at nationals and says she is now pain-free. “We delivered a program like we are used to, so we can finally put the injuries behind us and look forward!”

After winning the silver at the world juniors two seasons ago, they won two medals on ISU Grand Prix circuit in 2015-16 and were fourth at the Grand Prix Final.

Camille Ruest of Rimouski, Que., and Andrew Wolfe of Balmertown, Ont., are fourth at 64.40.

In the men’s short program, Keegan Messing of Sherwood Park, Alta., is third with Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan in the lead. Bennet Toman of Brampton, Ont., is fourth.

In the women’s short program, Mirai Nagasu of the U.S. stands first followed by Elizabet Tursynbaeva of Kazakhstan and Na Hyun Kim of South Korea.

Alaine Chartrand of Prescott, Ont., is sixth, Michelle Long of Newmarket, Ont., 10th and Larkyn Austman of Coquitlam, B.C. 13th.

Virtue and Moir dazzle

In Thursday’s short dance, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir made a spectacular return to competition producing 77.72 points. Laurence Fournier-Beaudry and Nikolaj Sorensen of Denmark are second at 63.26 and Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker of the U.S. third at 62.70.

‘’What’s surprised me is how much we still enjoy it and we’re hoping we can keep that way all the way through to Korea [the 2018 Olympics],’’ said Moir from Ilderton, Ont. ‘’We want to enjoy every second, even the high pressure situations like this.”

Virtue and Scott, the 2010 Olympic champions and two-time world champs, were competing for the first time since earning silver at the 2014 Sochi Games.

“We’re thrilled to share our material and be back in the swing of things,” said Virtue, 27 of London, Ont. “Emotionally, mentally and physically our approach was right.

Carolane Soucisse of Chateauguay, Que., and Shane Firus of Barrie, Ont., are seventh while Haley Sales of Burnaby, B.C. and Nikolas Wamsteeker of Langley, B.C., are ninth.

Canada wins two gold in junior competition

In junior competition, Edrian Paul Celestino of Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Que., won the gold medal in men’s competition while Iliya Kovler of Richmond Hill, Ont., was third.

‘’I was really exhausted after the free program but relieved as well,’’ said Celestino. ‘’This was my last junior international competition and I’m excited about the next step forward.’’

In women’s junior competition, Aurora Cotop of Toronto was the winner and Olivia Gran of Kelowna, B.C. second.

‘’I knew the other scores going into my free skate and I just did what I had to do,’’ said Cotop, 14. ‘’There’s still a lot to work on in my program but I felt I connected well with the music and the overall performance was strong.’’

Competition ends Saturday.

Full results: 2016 Autumn Classic International.

Canadian skaters headed to Montreal for Skate Canada Autumn Classic International

OTTAWA, ON: Skate Canada will send 18 entries, for a total of 23 skaters to the third annual Skate Canada Autumn Classic International (#ACI16). Canada will have 10 entries at the senior level ISU Challenger Series event including two entries per discipline in men’s and pair and three entries per discipline in ladies and ice dance. The junior category of the event will feature eight Canadian entries including two in men’s and six in ladies. The event runs from September 28-October 1, 2016, at the Sportplexe Pierrefonds in Montreal, Que.

Keegan Messing, 24, Girdwood, Alaska, USA, is one of two Canadian entries in men’s. Last season, Messing placed fifth at the Ondrej Nepela Trophy, 11th at Skate Canada International and sixth at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships. The representative of Sherwood Park FSC is coached by Ralph Burghart in Anchorage, Alaska, USA.

Bennet Toman, 19, Brampton, Ont., is the second Canadian entry in men’s. Last season, he placed sixth at this event. Toman also placed eighth at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships and fourth at the 2016 Coupe de Printemps. He is coached by Robert O’Toole in Mississauga, Ont.

Canadian Champion Alaine Chartrand, 20, Prescott, Ont., is the first of three Canadian entries in the ladies category. Last year, Chartrand placed 12th at Skate America, sixth at the Rostelecom Cup, 11th at the ISU Four Continents Championships, and 17th at the ISU World Figure Skating Championships. The representative of the Nepean Skating Club is coached by Michelle Leigh and Brian Orser.

Michelle Long, 24, Newmarket, Ont., is the second Canadian entry in the ladies discipline. This will be her first international assignment. Last season, she placed fifth at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships. Long is coached by Robert Burk and Danielle Rose in Richmond Hill, Ont.

Larkyn Austman, 18, Coquitlam, B.C., will also represent Canada in the ladies discipline. Last season, she finished sixth at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships. She is coached by Zdenek Pazdirek in Coquitlam, B.C.

Canadian silver medallists in 2016, Julianne Séguin, 19, Longueuil, Que., and Charlie Bilodeau, 23, Trois-Pistoles, Que., are the first of two Canadian pair entries at the event. Last season, they placed fifth at the Nebelhorn Trophy, and won bronze at Skate America and Trophée Éric Bompard. Séguin and Bilodeau are coached by Josée Picard in Chambly, Que.

Camille Ruest, 22, Rimouski, Que., and Andrew Wolfe, 21, Calgary, Alta., will also represent Canada in pair. This will be their first international assignment together. Ruest and Wolfe are coached by Richard Gauthier and Bruno Marcotte in Montreal, Que.

Olympic and World champions Tessa Virtue, 27, London, Ont., and Scott Moir, 29, Ilderton, Ont., lead the Canadian entries in ice dance. Virtue and Moir return to competition after taking two seasons off following the 2014 Olympic Winter Games where they earned silver medals in ice dance and in the team event. Virtue and Moir are coached by Marie-France Dubreuil and Patrice Lauzon in Montreal, Que.

Carolane Soucisse, 21, Châteauguay, Que., and Shane Firus, 22, Barrie, Ont., will also represent Canada in ice dance. This will be their first international assignment together. Soucisse and Firus are coached by Marie-France Dubreuil and Patrice Lauzon in Montreal, Que.

Haley Sales, 19, Burnaby, B.C., and Nikolas Wamsteeker, 19, Langley, B.C., are the third Canadian ice dance entry at the event. Last season, they placed fourth in the junior category at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships. Sales and Wamsteeker are coached by Megan Wing and Aaron Lowe in Burnaby, B.C.

Junior Entries

Canadian junior silver medallist Edrian Paul Celestino, 18, Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Que., is one of two Canadian representatives in the junior men’s category. Last season, he placed fourth at this event in the junior category. This season, he placed ninth at the ISU Junior Grand Prix in Russia. He is coached by Daniel Beland in Montreal, Que.

Iliya Kovler, 13, Richmond Hill, Ont., is the second Canadian entry in the junior men’s category. This will be his first international assignment. Kovler placed fourth in the novice category at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships. He is coached by Andrei Berezintsev in Richmond Hill, Ont.

Canadian junior silver medallist in 2016, Alicia Pineault, 16, Varennes, Que., is one of six Canadian entries in the junior ladies category. Last year, she won the silver medal at this event. This season, she placed 10th at the ISU Junior Grand Prix in the Czech Republic. Pineault is coached by Stéphane Yvars in Boucherville, Que.

Amanda Tobin, 16, Burlington, Ont., will also represent Canada in junior ladies. This will be her first international assignment. Tobin placed fifth at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships in the junior category. She is coached by Leesa Velenosi, Raoul LeBlanc, and Kristy Bell in Burlington, Ont.

McKenna Colthorp, 15, Fort St. James, B.C., will represent Canada in the junior ladies category. Last year, she won the bronze medal at this event and placed seventh in the junior category at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships. She is coached by Karen Mongrain and Jason Mongrain in Kelowna, B.C.

Canadian novice champion in 2016, Aurora Cotop, 14, Toronto, Ont., will represent Canada in junior ladies. This will be her first international assignment. Cotop is coached by Jonathan Mills and Myke Gillman in Thornhill, Ont.

Canadian novice silver medallist Olivia Gran, 13, Kelowna, B.C., will represent Canada in junior ladies. Earlier this season she placed ninth at her ISU Junior Grand Prix assignment in France. Gran is coached by Karen and Jason Mongrain in Kelowna, B.C.

Also representing Canada in junior ladies is Lissa Anne McGaghey, 16, Campbellton, N.B. This will be her first international assignment. Last season, she placed 11th in the novice women’s category at the 2016 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships. McGaghey is coached by Stéphane Yvars in Boucherville, Que.

Scott Rachuk of Strathroy, Ont., and Terra Findlay of Echo Bay, Ont., will be the Canadian team leaders onsite. Dr. Ed Pilat of Winnipeg, Man., and physiotherapist Josiane Roberge of Sillery, Que., will be the Canadian medical staff onsite. Karen Howard of Regina, Sask., Jérôme Poulin of Montreal, Que., Véronique Gosselin of Saint-Jean-sur-Richelieu, Que., and Nicole Leblanc-Richard of Dieppe, N.B., will be the Canadian officials at the event.

For more information and full entries please visit the Skate Canada website.

CANADIAN SENIOR ENTRIES AT 2016 SKATE CANADA AUTUMN CLASSIC INTERNATIONAL

Discipline Name Age Hometown Club Coach
Mens Keegan Messing 24 Girdwood, Alaska, USA Sherwood Park FSC Ralph Burghart
Mens Bennet Toman 19 Brampton, Ont. CPAR Vaudreuil Robert O’Toole
Ladies Alaine Chartrand 20 Prescott, Ont. Nepean Skating Club Michelle Leigh / Brian Orser
Ladies Michelle Long 24 Newmarket, Ont. Richmond Hill FSC Robert Burk / Danielle Rose
Ladies Larkyn Austman 18 Coquitlam, B.C. Connaught SC Zdenek Pazdirek
Pair Julianne Séguin / Charlie Bilodeau 19/23 Longueuil, Que. / Trois-Pistoles, Que. CPA Longueuil / CPA Chambly Josée Picard
Pair Camille Ruest / Andrew Wolfe 22/21 Rimouski, Que. / Balmertown, Ont. CPA De Rimouski / Glencoe Club Richard Gauthier / Bruno Marcotte
Ice Dance Tessa Virtue / Scott Moir 27/29 London, Ont. / Ilderton, Ont. Ilderton SC / Ilderton SC Marie-France Dubreuil / Patrice Lauzon
Ice Dance Carolane Soucisse / Shane Firus 21/22 Châteauguay, Que. / Barrie, Ont. CPA Repentigny / CPA Ahuntsic Marie-France Dubreuil / Patrice Lauzon
Ice Dance Haley Sales / Nikolas Wamsteeker 18/18 Burnaby, B.C. / Langley, B.C. Kelowna SC / Champs International Skating Centre Megan Wing / Aaron Lowe

CANADIAN JUNIOR ENTRIES AT 2016 SKATE CANADA AUTUMN CLASSIC INTERNATIONAL

Discipline Name Age Hometown Club Coach
Mens Edrian Paul Celestino 18 Dollard-des-Ormeaux, Que. Saint Laurent FSC Daniel Beland
Mens Iliya Kovler 13 Richmond Hill, Ont. Richmond Hill FSC Andrei Berezintsev
Ladies Alicia Pineault 16 Varennes, Que. CPA Varennes Stéphane Yvars
Ladies Amanda Tobin 16 Burlington, Ont. Burlington SC Leesa Velenosi / Raoul LeBlanc / Kristy Bell
Ladies McKenna Colthorp 15 Fort St. James, B.C. Kelowna FSC Karen Mongrain / Jason Mongrain
Ladies Aurora Cotop 14 Toronto, Ont. Thornhill FSC Jonathan Mills / Myke Gillman
Ladies Olivia Gran 13 Kelowna, B.C. Kelowna FSC Karen Mongrain / Jason Mongrain
Ladies Lissa Anne McGaghey 16 Campbellton, N.B. Campbellton FSC Stéphane Yvars

2016 Skate Canada International Single Event Tickets On Sale Friday

TORONTO, ON: Single event tickets for the 2016 Skate Canada International will go on sale this Friday, September 9 at 10:00 a.m. (ET). The event will take place from October 27-30, 2016 in Mississauga, Ontario at Hershey Centre.

TICKETS
Single tickets range from $35-$60, plus applicable surcharges. A full list of event sessions with pricing and start times can be found on the event page. NEW! Family two-packs or four-packs, that include pre-paid food vouchers are now available! Please see the 2016 Skate Canada International event page for more details.

Tickets for the Thursday practices will be free to attend with tickets available at the Hershey Centre box office, first come first serve, up to capacity.

Tickets can be purchased online at www.ticketmaster.ca, by phone at 1-855-985-5000 or in person at the Hershey Centre box office.

WHO TO WATCH
The line-up in Mississauga features Canadian favourites including two-time world pair champions Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford, three-time world champion Patrick Chan, and Canadian champion Alaine Chartrand. Fans will also get to witness the homecoming of Olympic ice dance champions Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir; they will make their return to competition after taking a two-year hiatus.

They will be joined by various current and former world champions including Evgenia Medvedeva of Russia, Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan, Elizaveta Tuktamysheva of Russia, and Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte of Italy.

EVENT INFO
Skate Canada International is the second competition on the annual ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series. The other events take place in the United States (Skate America), Russia (Rostelecom Cup), France (Trophée Eric Bompard), China (Cup of China) and Japan (NHK Trophy). The top six from each discipline (men’s, ladies, pair and ice dance) qualify for the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final to be held in Marseille, France from December 8-11, 2016.

Skate Canada Announces 2016-2017 National Team

OTTAWA, ON: Skate Canada is pleased to announce the 2016-2017 National Team. The team is comprised of 28 senior members, which includes five men, five women, four pair teams and five ice dance teams.

To be named to the National Team a skater must finish in the top five in senior singles, pair and ice dance disciplines at the Canadian Tire National Skating Championships, or be added at the discretion of the Skate Canada. These skaters may be considered to represent Canada at international competitions.

Their appointment to the national team is effective from June 1, 2016 through to April 30, 2017. Skate Canada also announced the three teams that will make up the Skate Canada Synchronized Skating National Team.

MEN
Patrick Chan, 25, Toronto, Ont.
Liam Firus, 23, North Vancouver, B.C.
Kevin Reynolds, 25, Coquitlam, B.C.
Nam Nguyen, 18, Toronto, Ont.
Nicolas Nadeau, 18, Boisbriand, Que.

WOMEN
Alaine Chartrand, 20, Prescott, Ont.
Gabrielle Daleman, 18, Newmarket, Ont.
Kaetlyn Osmond, 20, Marystown, Nfld. & Sherwood Park, Alta.
Véronik Mallet, 22, Sept-Iles, Que.
Michelle Long, 24, Newmarket, Ont.

PAIR
Meagan Duhamel, 30, Lively, Ont. & Eric Radford, 31, Balmertown, Ont.
Julianne Séguin, 19, Longueuil, Que. & Charlie Bilodeau, 22, Trois-Pistoles, Que.
Lubov Ilyushechkina, 24, Moscow, Russia & Dylan Moscovitch, 31, Toronto, Ont.
Kirsten Moore-Towers, 24, St. Catharines, Ont. & Michael Marinaro, 24, Sarnia, Ont.

ICE DANCE
Kaitlyn Weaver, 27, Waterloo, Ont. & Andrew Poje, 29, Waterloo, Ont.
Piper Gilles, 24, Toronto, Ont. & Paul Poirier, 24, Unionville, Ont.
Élisabeth Paradis, 23, Loretteville, Que. & François-Xavier Ouellette, 23, Laval, Que.
Alexandra Paul, 24, Midhurst, Ont. & Mitchell Islam, 26, Barrie, Ont.
Tessa Virtue, 27, London, Ont. & Scott Moir, 28, Ilderton, Ont.

SYNCHRONIZED SKATING
Les Suprêmes, of CPA Saint-Léonard
NEXXICE, of the Burlington Skating Centre
Meraki, of the Leaside Skating Club