(February 28, 2008)
SOFIA, Bulgaria - Vanessa Crone of Aurora, Ont., and Paul Poirier of Unionville, Ont., moved up to second place in the ice dancing competition after Thursday’s original dance at the world junior figure skating championships.
Emily Samuelson and Evan Bates of the U.S., remain first with 92.95 points, Crone and Poirier follow at 91.23 and Kristina Gorshhkova and Vitali Butikov of Russia are third at 88.98. The Canadians were second in the original dance after placing third in Tuesday’s compulsory dance.
‘’We really did what we set out to do so we’re very happy with the performance,’’ said Poirier, who teamed with his partner for two Grand Prix wins earlier this season. ‘’It’s a very challenging dance technically and we really had to trust our training. It worked out fine.’’
Poirier said their strong performances this season have convinced them they can win a medal here.
‘’At the beginning of the season our goal for the world juniors was a top-five,’’ he said. ‘’As the season’s progressed, we’ve seen the possibility of getting a medal. We’re really excited about our performances here so far.’’
Kharis Ralph and Asher Hill of Toronto jumped from 10th to eighth and Karen Routhier of Quebec City and Eric Saucke-Lacelle of Sherbrooke, Que., stand 10th out of 32 entries.
In men’s competition, Adam Rippon of the U.S., won the gold medal with 199.90 points, Artem Borodulin of Russia was second at 194.77 and Jinlin Guan of China third at 189.60.
Kevin Reynolds of Coquitlam, B.C., made a spectacular comeback posting the fourth best score in the free skate to jump from 13th to a sixth place finish. Jeremy Ten of Vancouver also made an impressive climb with the eighth best long program to move from 11th to eighth. Elladj Baldé of Pierrefonds, Que., was 21st.
Reynolds landed a triple Axel for the first time in his career in competition.
‘’My training went really well this week so I was confident I had a chance to land it,’’ said Reynolds, sixth at the senior nationals last month. ‘’It was the highlight of a very strong program for me. The short program was disappointing because it’s been solid for me this season but I just had to forget about it.’’
Ten rebounded from a difficult warm-up.
‘’I knew I was going to have to fight for every point,’’ said Ten. ‘’That’s what I’m most proud of. I could have just said this was going to be bad day but I came back and put down a season best score.’’
Competition continues Friday with the free dance in ice dancing and the women’s short program.