Korean Ice Dancers Hannah Lim/Ye Quan claimed a historic first ISU Junior Grand Prix title in the discipline for their country, as the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series 2022/23 kicked off with the first event in Courchevel (FRA). Hana Yoshida and Shunsuke Nakamura continued Japan’s success in Single Skating after the country had sat out the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in the past season.
Hana Yoshida’s (JPN) golden birthday gift
Hana Yoshida of Japan made herself the perfect birthday present by triumphing in what was her debut at the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating.
Hana Yoshida (JPN) performs during the 2022 ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Courchevel, France. © ISU
A few days after her 17th birthday Yoshida claimed the title, pulling up from second place following her Short Program to “Dog Days Are Over” by Florence and the Machine. In her Free Skating set to “The Planets” by Gustav Holst and “Star Wars” by John Williams, the Japanese Skater stepped out of her opening triple Axel and reeled off six clean triples, while only underrotating one triple Lutz. Yoshida totalled 203.52 points and overtook her teammate and Short Program leader Ayumi Shibayama (JPN). “I wanted to land it (the triple Axel) clean and I’m going to do it in the next Junior Grand Prix,” Yoshida said. “I like the Short Program because it is so fun, but I like the long program, because I can be princess Leia,” she added.
Shibayama (JPN), 14, earned the lead with her flawless Short Program to “Song of Aeolus” by Karl Jenkins that included a triple Lutz-triple toeloop combination. Her Free Skating to “Turandot” by Giacomo Puccini featured seven clean triple jumps, but she singled one Axel and slipped to second place at 188.39 points.
Ayumi Shibayama (JPN) performs during the 2022 ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Courchevel, France. © ISU
The bronze went to Yujae Kim (KOR), like the two Japanese women a newcomer on the ISU Junior Grand Prix scene. The 13-year-old slightly underrotated her triple Axel (q) in the Free Skating, but hit five triple jumps to place third (185.67 points).
Yujae Kim (KOR) performs during the 2022 ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Courchevel, France. © ISU
Valentina Cueva became the first Skater to represent Ecuador in ISU competitions (32nd).
Nakamura (JPN) celebrates golden debut
Shunsuke Nakamura (JPN) trains together with Yoshida and Shibayama in Kyoto and made his coaches proud by winning his first ISU Junior Grand Prix event.
Gold medal winner Shunsuke Nakamura (JPN) poses with medal after the ISU the 2022 ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Courchevel, France. © ISU
Younghyun Cha (KOR) has competed on the ISU Junior circuit since 2017 and this year won his first medal, the silver. The 18-year-old ranked second in the Short Program and landed five triples in the Free Skating to the “Dune” soundtrack, but he did not risk a triple Axel and fell on a triple toe (196.15 points). Another training mate of Nakamura, Ryoga Morimoto, (JPN) picked up the bronze in what was his first international competition to complete an excellent showing of his training group (188.66 points).
Gold medal winner Shunsuke Nakamura (JPN), silver medal winner Younghyun Cha (KOR) and bronze medal winner Ryoga Morimoto (JPN) pose with medals after the 2022 ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Courchevel, France © ISU
Lim/Quan win first ISU JGP Ice Dance title for Korea
Courchevel turned out to be a lucky place for Hannah Lim/Ye Quan (KOR). One year after becoming the first Korean Ice Dancers to win a medal on the ISU Junior Grand Prix, the couple that trains in Canada, made history again by winning the first Junior Grand Prix Ice Dance title this time.
Lim/Quan tangoed to the lead in the Rhythm Dance to “Primavera Portena” by Astor Piazzolla with two level-four elements. The team built on their lead with their Free Dance to “Danse Macabre” by Camille Saint-Saens, producing level-four twizzles, lifts and a level-four dance spin. They set a personal best in both segments and won with 14 points to spare at 161.96 points ahead of Celina Fradji/Jean- Hans Fourneaux (FRA) with 147.66 points.
Hannah Lim and Ye Quan (KOR) compete in the Junior Ice Dance Rhythm Dance during the 2022 ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Courchevel, France.. © ISU
“We are really, really proud. We got our personal best at the Junior Grand Prix in Russia (in 2021) and we really wanted to see the progress we had since (Junior) Worlds,” Quan noted. “We would like to go to the Junior Grand Prix Final and for that we will have to do very well at our next (Junior) Grand Prix. But I think within a month and a half we’ll be able to show an even better performance. And at (Junior) Worlds we’d like to do a podium”, Lim commented.
Fradji/Fourneaux that train not far away from Courchevel in Villard-de-Lans made the podium in their second JGP season as a team and turned in two clean performances of their “Tango Gringo” Rhythm Dance and their Free Dance to “Agape”, “Epidauros” and “Ya Nas”.
Celina Fradji and Jean-Hans Fourneaux (FRA) compete in the Ice Dance Rhythm Dance during the 2022 ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Courchevel, France.© ISU
Vanessa Pham/Jonathan Rogers (USA) earned the bronze in the first ISU Junior Grand Prix event of their career (143.26 points).
Vanessa Pham and Jonathan Rogers (USA) compete in the Ice Dance Rhythm Dance during the 2022 ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating in Courchevel, France.© ISU
A total of 74 Skaters/Couples representing 29 ISU Members competed in the first ISU Junior Grand Prix event of the season. The ISU Junior Grand Prix series 2022/23 continues next week with Czech Skate in Ostrava (CZE).
Full entry lists, results, the General Announcement and further information are available on the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series page.
More than 300 young Skaters from over 50 ISU Members are expected to compete in this year’s Series. Each ISU Member is entitled to enter competitors for the Series while the number of their entries depends on the result of the ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships 2022.
Following the IOC recommendation and in order to protect the integrity of ice skating competitions and for the safety of all the participants of international ice skating competitions, the ISU Council based on Article 17.1.q)i) of the ISU Constitution, agreed that with immediate effect and until further notice, no Skaters belonging to the ISU Members in Russia (Russian Skating Union and the Figure Skating Federation of Russia) and Belarus (Skating Union of Belarus) shall be invited or allowed to participate in International ice skating competitions including ISU Championships and other ISU Events. The same applies to Officials listed in the respective ISU Communications and/or Regulations under Russia and Belarus (see ISU Communication 2469).
Junior Grand Prix Standings
Where to Watch
The ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating events will be live streamed on the official ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating YouTube Channel in most countries. Find out where to watch the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating competitions.
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ISU Junior Grand Prix Schedule
The schedules of each ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating events are available below:
24 - 27 Aug 2022 Courchevel/FRA
31 Aug - 3 Sept 2022 Ostrava/CZE
7 - 10 Sept 2022 Riga/LAT
21 - 24 Sept 2022 Yerevan/ARM
28 Sept - 1 Oct 2022 Gdansk/POL
5 - 8 Oct 2022 Gdansk/POL
12 - 15 Oct 2022 Egna/ITA