Ice Network

Canada claims pairs, dance gold in Czech Republic

Americans McNamara, Carpenter take home bronze medal in dance
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Canada's Julianne Séguin and Charlie Bilodeau (left) took gold in pairs, and their countrymen, Mackenzie Bent and Garrett MacKeen, topped the ice dance field. -Stephan Potopnyk/Skate Canada

Canada enjoyed quite the day Friday at the Junior Grand Prix (JGP) event in Ostrava, Czech Republic, taking gold in pairs and ice dance. The country also claimed the lead in the men's competition.

Coming into their free skate with a slim lead, Julianne Séguin and Charlie Bilodeau blew away the competition to win gold in pairs. The Canadian duo recorded a career-best 104.19 points for their free Friday and finished the competition with a final score of 159.40, nearly 15 points better than that of second-place finishers Lina Fedorova and Maxim Miroshkin.

The nearly flawless performance saw the pair execute all of their attempted elements in what was their first-ever trip to a JGP podium. Séguin and Bilodeau's impressive free to music by Peter Gabriel included two Level 4 lifts, a double Axel-triple toe combination and a throw triple Salchow.

Russia's Federova and Miroshkin took silver after opening their free with two straight elements that earned negative Grades of Execution (GOE), but they rebounded with a relatively clean performance the rest of the way, including a Level 4 reverse lasso lift. The pair finished with a total score of 144.62 to earn their fifth career medal in the JGP Series.

Kamilla Gainetdinova and Sergei Alexeev finished third in their international debuts with a score of 134.43. The Russian pair was able to clinch a bronze-medal finish behind a triple loop-single loop-double loop sequence and a throw triple loop.

Lindsay Weinstein and Jacob Simon of the U.S. skated a clean program to finish in fifth place. Making their JGP debuts, the pair received a Level 4 for their Group 5 lasso lift that earned 6.07 points.

Mackenzie Bent and Garrett MacKeen topped the ice dance field for Canada with an 82.42-point free dance that left them with a total score of 138.17. The team earned its second career JGP gold medal behind a Level 4 twizzle sequence that notched 7.80 points. They closed out their free with a 7.28-point diagonal in hold.

Betina Popova and Yuri Vlasenko took home the silver medal for Russia in ice dance, tallying a final score of 131.42 points despite finishing fourth in the free. The duo edged out Americans Lorraine McNamara and Quinn Carpenter, who took bronze with 130.79 points.

Skating to music from One Thousand and One Nights by Fikret Amirov, Popova and Vlasenko's diagonal in hold (1.10 GOE) received 8.20 points, the highest score for any element in the event. Their twizzle sequence was only given a Level 2, earning 5.20 points, but it was enough for the team to take home its second career JGP silver medal and its third trip to the podium in the Series.

In what was a tightly contested free dance, McNamara and Carpenter skated to music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, finishing second with 81.75 points to help secure the bronze medal. The team's highest-scoring element was a Level 4 twizzle that earned 7.50 points. They also recorded a 7.43-point circular in hold (1.83 GOE).

Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko finished fifth in the competition with 126.98 points.

Canada's Roman Sadovsky put himself in good position to win his first career JGP gold medal by notching 67.51 points in the men's short. His program, skated to "The Prophet" by Gary Moore, included a clean double Axel and triple Lutz, as well as two Level 4 spins, one of which earned a 1.00 GOE.

Winner of three JGP bronze medals, Russia's Alexander Samarin fell on his opening triple Axel but rebounded by landing a triple flip-triple toe combination and a triple Lutz in the second half of his 62.42-point performance.

Sei Kawahara rounded out the top three with his Umbrellas of Cherbourg short. Competing in his eighth JGP event, the Japanese skater also fell on his opening triple Axel, but he bounced back immediately with a triple loop-triple toe combination that earned the highest score of any element in the short -- 9.70 points. He also landed a triple Lutz.

American Andrew Torgashev was solid in his international debut, finishing in fourth place in the short. Skating to "Parisienne Walkways" by Gary Moore, the 13-year-old landed his opening double Axel and fell out of an attempted triple flip combination, but he was technically sound the rest of the way. His triple Lutz (0.70 GOE) earned 7.30 points.