The fifth edition of the ISU World Team Trophy will take place April 19 to 23 at Yoyogi National Stadium in Tokyo, Japan.
The teams ranked 1 to 6 in the ISU World Team Standings qualified for the event. Team Canada is the top qualifier for the ISU World Team Trophy 2017 with 8437 points followed by Russia (7972 points), USA (7257 points), Japan (7068 points), China (5065 points) and France (4307 points).
Three-time World Champion Patrick Chan leads team Canada and is joined by 2017 World bronze medalist Gabrielle Daleman, 2015 Ice Dance World bronze medalists Kaitlyn Weaver/Andrew Poje, Kevin Reynolds, Alaine Chartrand and Pair Skaters Kirsten Moore-Towers/Michael Marinaro. Weaver is the team captain.
Two-time and reigning World Champion Evgenia Medvedeva headlines team Russia. The team under captain Ekaterina Bobrova features 2017 Winter Universiade Champion Elena Radionova, 2017 World bronze Pairs medalists Evgenia Tarasova/Vladimir Morozov, European medalists Mikhail Kolyada and Maxim Kovtun as well as Bobrova and her ice dance partner Dmitri Soloviev, who are multiple European ice dance medalists.
Team USA counts on 2017 Four Continents Champion Nathan Chen, 2016 Ice Dance World bronze medalists Madison Chock/Evan Bates, Jason Brown, 2016 World silver medalist Ashley Wagner, U.S. Champion Karen Chen and pair skaters Ashley Cain/Timothy LeDuc. Wagner is the team captain.
2017 World and reigning Olympic Champion Yuzuru Hanyu leads Team Japan. He is joined by 2017 World silver medalist Shoma Uno, 2017 Four Continents Champion Mai Mihara, two-time World Junior bronze medalist Wakaba Higuchi, Ice Dancers Kana Muramoto/Chris Reed and Pair Skaters Sumire Suto/Francis Boudreau Audet. Muramoto has taken the role as team captain.
Team China comes with 2017 World bronze medalist Boyang Jin, ISU Grand Prix finalists Cheng Peng/Yang Jin, Zijun Li, Xiangning Li, Tangxu Li and Ice Dancers Shiyue Wang/Xinyu Liu. Pair skater Yang Jin is the team captain.
2017 European bronze Pairs medalists Vanessa James/Morgan Cipres, Chafik Besseghier, Kevin Aymoz, Mae-Berenice Meite, Laurine Lecavelier and Ice Dancers Marie-Jade Lauriault/ Romain Le Gac will compete for Team France. The team captain is Cipres.
Team USA has won the Team Trophy three times in 2015, 2013 and 2009 while Team Japan struck gold in 2012.
The teams will compete for a total prize money of 1,000,000 US$, made available by the organizing ISU Member, Japan Skating Federation (and secured through ISU agreements).
The prize money is awarded as follows:
1st placed team: US$ 200’000
2nd placed team: US$ 170’000
3rd placed team: US$ 160’000
4th placed team: US$ 150’000
5th placed team: US$ 140’000
6th placed team: US$ 130’000.
Format and Qualification
The ISU World Team Trophy format is based on a competition consisting of the six best national teams from ISU Members with a special provision for the host ISU Member to be included. Each team will be composed of two Men, two Ladies, one Pair Skating couple and one Ice Dance couple, i.e. a total of eight skaters per team.
The team event consists of two phases of competition, the Short Program/Short Dance and the Free Skating/Free Dance. Teams are awarded 12 to 1 team points (12 points for first place, 1 point for 12th place) for Men and Ladies and respectively 12 to 7 points for Pairs and Ice Dance couples in the Short and in the Free Program. The standings are calculated according to the sum of the team points achieved in each phase of the event. Several tie breakers are in place.
The teams qualified based on a scoring scale used for the ISU World Standing points scored by its best two Ladies and best two Men as well as its best Pairs Skating couple and best Ice Dance couple primarily at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating events and Final of the 2016/17 season and the ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2017 plus possibly the ISU European Figure Skating Championships/ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships 2017, the ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships 2017 and ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in the 2016/17 season.
The schedule of the ISU World Team Trophy is as follows:
Thursday, April 20: Short Dance, Ladies and Men's Short Programs
Friday, April 21: Pairs Short Program, Free Dance, Men's Free Skating
Saturday, April 22: Pairs and Ladies Free Skating
Sunday, April 23: Exhibition Gala
For more information and results please refer to the related event and http://www.tv-asahi.co.jp/figure/wtt2017/index_en.html.