(November 19, 2005)
The 2005 Trophée Eric Bompard Cachemire has gotten off to a good start for Canadian athletes.
Buttle, the 2005 Canadian Mens Champion, delivered a technically sound and intricate short program skated to Louis Primas Sing, Sing, Sing at this seasons fourth stop on the ISU Grand Prix circuit.
His technical element score of 38.38 combined with his program component score of 37.70 earned Buttle a total of 76.08 points for the short program, just under his personal best score of 77.39, which he achieved in the short program at the 2005 ISU World Figure Skating Championships in Moscow.
Buttle had an outstanding performance that was highlighted by crisp jumps, strong spins and difficult footwork. He hit his triple flip-triple toe loop combination off the top of his program and went on to complete a solid triple Axel and a triple Lutz. He showed good spins, fast, detailed footwork and superb interpretation.
Overall I feel very happy with how I skated. I think the performance went well, and I felt really comfortable out there today, said Buttle.
Placing second to Buttle was Frances Brian Joubert, the 2004 European Champion and 2004 world silver medallist. Jouberts point total of 71.55 earned him second-place ahead of Romanias Gheorghe Chiper, who was third with 66.25.
Americans Timothy Goebel and Michael Weiss are currently standing fourth and fifth, respectively.
Meanwhile in the ladies event, Rochette skated a personal best short program in earning a total of 57.08 points. Rochette, the 2005 Canadian Womens Champion, currently stands fourth heading into tomorrows free skate.
Rochette, skating to an instrumental version of Madonnas 1980s hit Like a Prayer, skated a strong performance that included a clean triple flip, double Axel and intricate footwork. Her only small mistake come on the triple Lutz combination when she turned out of the landing of the triple Lutz, but was still able to add a double toe loop to complete the combination.
Im very pleased with my skate, said Rochette. I think its an improvement over (my short program) MasterCard Skate Canada International. Of course Im a bit mad about the mistake I did on the triple Lutz, but overall I think the program was much better this time.
This is the main goal, to keep building on every competition I do, added Rochette.
Young up-and-comer Mao Asada, of Japan, the 2005 world junior champion, is in first after a brilliant short program that earned her 63.96 points. American Sasha Cohen, who is coming off an injury, is in second with 60.96 points. Shizuka Arakawa, the 2004 world champion, is just ahead of Rochette with 57.98 points.
In the pair event, two-time Canadian Pair Champions Valérie Marcoux and Craig Buntin are in third after the short program with 58.44 points, trailing the first-place finishers, Russians and two-time world champions Tatiana Totmianina and Maxim Marinin (66.50 points), and the Chinese team of Qing Pang and Jian Tong (62.26 points), bronze medal winners at the 2004 ISU World Figure Skating Championships.
Marcoux and Buntin delivered an impressive performance to Hey Big Spender from the musical Sweet Charity. They completed clean side-by-side triple toe loops, a throw triple loop out of a difficult entry, a good double twist and an impressive overhead lift.
It was better than at Skate Canada, and were pretty happy with it, said Marcoux.
Canadian athletes will look to continue their success at the event tomorrow, as the men, ladies and pairs will skate their free skates.