(February 14, 2008)
GOYANG CITY (Canadian Sport News) - Tessa Virtue of London, Ont., and Scott Moir of Ilderton, Ont., won the original dance Thursday to remain atop the ice dance standings at the Four Continents Championships figure skating competition.
Virtue and Moir, the Canadian champions and sixth at last year’s worlds, are first with 103.24 points after the compulsory dance and original dance. The free dance is on Friday. Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the U.S., are second at 99.29 and their compatriots Kimberly Navarro and Brent Bommentre third at 91.03.
“Tessa and I are very pleased with the way we skated today,’’ said Moir. ‘’We wanted to go out there and attack it as much as possible. We felt like we did that and we’re hoping to build on that for the final.”
Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje, both of Waterloo, Ont., are fifth and Allie Hann-McCurdy of Ottawa-Orleans, Ont., and Michael Coreno of Delhi, Ont., are sixth at 80.26.
In pairs, Qing Pang and Jian Tong of China won Thursday’s free skate to take the gold medal with 187.33 points. Their compatriots Dan Zhang and Hao Zhang were second at 181.84 and Brooke Castile and Benjamin Okolski of the U.S., third at 159.99é
Jessica Miller and Ian Moram of Montreal took fifth spot and Mylène Brodeur of Stanbridge Station, Que., and John Mattatal of Wallace, N.S., were seventh. Miller and Moram we’re hoping to at least match their bronze medal performance from earlier this season at the Cup of China.
‘’We were pretty happy with the performance but it wasn’t our best this season,’’ said Miller. ‘’We had a tough skate today. We had a couple of stumbles but we fought through it. We never gave up.’’
Women’s competition got underway Thursday with the short program. Japan stands 1-2 with Mao Asada first at 60.94 and Miki Ando second at 60.07. Four-time Canadian champion Joannie Rochette of Ile-Dupas, Que., is in third spot after posting a personal best 60.04.
Rochette’s performance included landing a triple Lutz and a double Axel while the back end of her triple flip-triple toe loop combination was downgraded.
“I felt very good tonight,’’ she said. ‘’It was the first time for me to do the triple-triple, and even though it was downgraded, I’m still happy about it. I also scored for the first time 60 points in the short program. It was a goal for me.’’
Olympian Mira Leung of Vancouver is seventh and Cynthia Phaneuf of Contrecoeur, Que., eighth.
The Four Continents event is open to any non-European member nations of the International Skating Union.
Competition continues Friday with the free dance in ice dancing and the men’s free skate.
Thursday’s leading results at the Four Continents Championships figure skating competition at Goyang City, South Korea:
Short program: 1. Mao Asada, Japan, 60.94 points; 2. Miki Ando, Japan, 60.07; 3. Joannie Rochette, Ile Dupas, Que., 60.04; 7. Mira Leung, Vancouver, 53.01; 8. Cynthia Phaneuf, Contrecoeur, Que., 50.63.
Final: 1. Qing Pang and Jian Tong, China, 187.33; 2. Dan Zhang and Hao Zhang, China, 181.84; Brooke Castile and Benjamin Okolski, U.S., 159.99; 5. Jessica Miller, Montreal and Ian Moram, Montreal, 149.44; 7. Mylène Brodeur, Stanbridge Station, Que., and John Mattatal, Wallace, N.S., 141.46.
Compulsory dance and original dance: 1. Tessa Virtue, London, Ont., and Scott Moir, Ilderton, Ont., 103.24; 2. Meryl Davis and Charlie White, U.S., 99.29; 3. Kimberly Navarro and Brent Bommentre, U.S., 91.03; 5. Kaitlyn Weaver, Waterloo, Ont., and Andrew Poje, Waterloo, 85.89; 6. Allie Hann-McCurdy, Ottawa-Orleans, Ont., and Michael Coreno, Delhi, Ont., 80.26.