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Tuktamisheva opens commanding lead at Finlandia

Cesario in medal contention after 50.79-point short in Espoo, Finland
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Elizaveta Tuktamisheva continued her early-season success with a first-place finish in the ladies short program at the Finlandia Trophy on Friday. -Getty Images

Russia's Elizaveta Tuktamisheva opened a large lead in the ladies short program at the Finlandia Trophy.

Looking to build off her first-place finish at the Nebelhorn Trophy, Tuktamisheva posted a score of 67.05 for her "Bolero" short Friday in Espoo, Finland.

Winner of the bronze medal at this event last season, Tuktamisheva opened with a triple toe-triple toe combination that earned +2 Grades of Execution (GOE) across the board. for 9.60 points -- the highest scoring element of the short program. She followed the impressive combination by executing a clean triple Lutz and a Level 4 spin and step sequence. She also landed a double Axel during the first-place short.

Finland's own Liubov Efimenko came in second with 56.21 points. Skating to "Concerto pour une Voix" by Saint Preux, her triple toe-triple toe combination notched 8.48 points. Her spins were all Level 3 or 4.

Rika Hongo is in third place after her 52.11-point Le Corsaire short. The Japanese skater under rotated her triple flip-triple toe combination and received an edge call on her triple Lutz. Both her spins earned Level 4.

American Samantha Cesario sits in fifth place, notching 50.79 points for her short to "Danza Mora" by Dr. Samy Farag. Her highest scoring element was an opening triple flip- double loop combination worth 6.96 points.