Press Release

Gregory, Petukhov withdraw from U.S. Championships

Team still recovering from fall at Skate Canada

Anna Cappellini (right) and Luca Lanotte (middle) try to help Melissa Gregory after her fall during the warm-ups at Skate Canada.
Anna Cappellini (right) and Luca Lanotte (middle) try to help Melissa Gregory after her fall during the warm-ups at Skate Canada. (Getty Images)

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By U.S. Figure Skating
(01/11/2008) - U.S. ice dancing team Melissa Gregory and Denis Petukhov have withdrawn from the 2008 U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Saint Paul, Minn., Jan. 20-27.

The team suffered a fall during the free dance warm-up at Skate Canada and subsequently withdrew from the event. Gregory and Petukhov were performing a rotational lift when he lost his grip, causing them both to fall. Gregory suffered bruises and cuts on her hip, while Petukhov injured his hip and neck. The injuries forced the team to withdraw from the Cup of Russia as well.

"It is with great regret that we have to withdraw from this year's nationals," Gregory said. "When we had our accident at Skate Canada, everyone focused on my injuries, but Denis also suffered injuries when he hit the boards."

"The loss of practice time at this crucial juncture, combined with my unsuccessful efforts to rehabilitate my injured knee, have left us unable to compete at the highest level," Petukhov said. "Our doctor has strongly recommended that we take the time to heal so that we may be back at 100 percent for next season."

The 2008 U.S. Championships will feature reigning U.S. champions Kimmie Meissner, Evan Lysacek, pairs team Brooke Castile and Ben Okolski, and ice dancers Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto.

"We wish every skater at this year's U.S. Championships the best of luck," Petukhov said. "We will continue our physical rehabilitation and look forward to returning for the 2008-09 competitive season."

U.S. Figure Skating Championships
The U.S. Figure Skating Championships, held annually since 1914, is the nation's most prestigious figure skating event. The 2008 competition will take place Jan. 20-27 at Xcel Energy Center in Saint Paul, Minn. Over the course of a week, the event will crown 12 U.S. champions in ladies, men's, pairs and ice dancing on the senior, junior and novice levels.

Single-session, U.S. Championships Skating Spectacular, all-event and championship weekend ticket packages for the 2008 U.S. Figure Skating Championships are on sale now at the Xcel Energy Center Box Office or online at www.saintpaul2008.com. For group ticket information, call 651-312-3486. Single-session tickets start at $12.