The ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating 2014/2015 continues this week with Skate Canada International, the second of six events, in Kelowna, BC. The world's top figure skaters are competing for points towards the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final and a prize money of US $ 180,000 per individual event of the Grand Prix.
55 skaters/couples from 12 ISU Members have been invited to Skate Canada. The event is headlined by World silver medalists Kaitlyn Weaver/Andrew Poje (CAN) and World bronze medalists Meagan Duhamel/Eric Radford (CAN).
In the Ice Dance event, Weaver/Poje can expect competition from 2014 Four Continents Champions Madison Hubbell/Zachary Donohue (USA) and 2014 Four Continents silver medalists Piper Gilles/Paul Poirier (CAN). German Champions Nelli Zhiganshina/Alexander Gazsi and 2011 World Junior Champions Ksenia Monko/Kirill Khaliavin (RUS) are eying the podium as well.
Reigning World bronze medalists Duhamel/Radford are aiming at their first Grand Prix victory. The challenge should come from 2014 Four Continents Champions Wenjing Sui/Cong Han (CHN), 2014 World Junior silver medalists Evgenia Tarasova/Vladimir Morozov (RUS) and Vanessa James/Morgan Cipres (FRA).
The Ladies event looks open with several contenders having a shot at the title. 2012 World silver medalist Alena Leonova (RUS) and her teammate Anna Pogorilaya, ranked fourth at the 2014 World Championships as well as ISU Grand Prix Final bronze medalist Ashley Wagner (USA) lead the field. 2014 Four Continents silver medalist Satoko Miyahara (JPN), Hae Jin Kim (KOR) and Viktoria Helgesson (SWE) are others to watch. Julianne Seguin (CAN), who qualified for the ISU Junior Grand Prix Final in Pair Skating this season debuts on the senior Grand Prix circuit as a single skater.
European Champion Javier Fernandez (ESP) is up against 2014 Four Continents Champion Takahito Mura (JPN), 2011 World silver medalist Takahiko Kozuka (JPN) and 2013 European bronze medalist Michal Brezina (CZE) in the Men’s event. Other contenders include 2011 European Champion Florent Amodio (FRA), 2014 European bronze medalist Konstantin Menshov (RUS), Max Aaron (USA) and Adam Rippon (USA).
The schedule of Skate Canada International is as follows:
Friday, October 31: Men’s, Pairs & Ladies Short Program, Short Dance
Saturday, November 1: Men’s, Pairs & Ladies Free Skating, Free Dance
Sunday, November 2: Exhibition Gala