Adam Hagara (SVK) Hyungyeom Kim (KOR) Beck Strommer (USA) ISU Junior Grand Prix Linz (AUT). @Skate Austria
Two-time World Junior silver medallist Jia Shin (KOR), Adam Hagara (SVK), newcomers Martina Ariano Kent/Charly Laliberte Laurent (CAN) and Ice Dancers Darya Grimm/Michail Savitskiy (GER) took the first important step towards the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final by skating off with gold at the Cup of Austria in Linz (August 30 – September 2, 2023). The Cup of Austria was the second ISU Junior Grand Prix event of the season.
Historical achievement for Hagara (SVK)
Adam Hagara not only struck gold in Linz, but he also became the first Slovakian Skater to win an ISU Junior Grand Prix event – and the first Slovakian junior man to make the podium since Juraj Sviatko back in 1997. The 17-year-old secured a clear victory with two strong performances. Skating to “Freedom” by Pharell Williams in the Short Program, he took the lead and followed up with another clean program to “Dream On” by Aerosmith that was highlighted by two triple Axels and six more triples. He accumulated a personal best of 220.33 points.
“I concentrated to do my best and to do my elements. I tried to keep a cool head and go for it,” Hagar said. “I tried everything I could and I trained really hard. I learned I shouldn’t doubt myself and always go for it, no matter how I feel.” Hagara is slated for the ISU Junior Grand Prix next end of September and his goal is clear: “I hope to qualify for the Junior Grand Prix Final, that would be great.” The Slovakian has good chances to make this happen – which would be another first for his country.
Korea’s Hyungyeom Kim made the Junior Grand Prix podium for the first time as well. He ranked second in the Short Program even though two jumps were a little short of rotation. The 17-year-old high school student was the only Skater to attempt a quadruple jump, but the quad toe as well as several other jumps were a little underrotated. Kim came third in the Free Skating but overall defended his position on 211.76 points. The bronze went to Beck Strommer (USA), another newcomer to the Junior Grand Prix podium. The American did not risk a triple Axel, but his other triple jumps as well as his spins and footwork were strong and he was second in the Free Skating, but remained third overall (210.92 points). 2023 ISU World Junior silver medalist Naoki Rossi (SUI) stood in 9th place following a sub-par Short Program but moved up to fifth with a much better Free Skating (198.60 points).
Fascinating Shin (KOR) at the top
Jia Shin (KOR) ISU Junior Grand Prix Linz (AUT). @Skate Austria
Skating to “Fascination” in the Short Program, the exquisite Shin was indeed fascinating. She built her lead with a strong Free Skating to “Not About Angels”, producing effortless looking triples and excellent spins and footwork. However, two triples were flawed. The 15-year-old accumulated 201.33 points and is on a good way to make the ISU Junior Grand Prix Final for the second time. “Actually I made minor mistakes, but I got a good score and so I was satisfied with the result”, Shin noted. “I am a little nervous in the competition, but I tried to enjoy skating at the practices without any concern”, she added. The two-time ISU World Junior silver medalist is headed to Budapest next and hopes to seal her spot in the Final in China.
In the past season, Murakami competed at the ISU Grand Prix Final and ISU World Junior Championships, but in Pair Skating. Now she is back in Singles and made the podium straight away. The Japanese Skater turned in a clean Short Program. She made a few mistakes in her Free Skating, including a fall on a double Axel, but held on to the bronze medal at 168.37 points. Kwon finished the Short Program in eighth place after missing her combination, but she rallied in the Free Skating and moved up to third place (165.93 points).
Golden debut for Ariano Kent/Laliberte Laurent (CAN)
Ariano Kent Laliberte Laurent (CAN) ISU Junior Grand Prix Linz (AUT). @ISU-1650655145
Canadians Martina Ariano Kent/Charly Laliberte Laurent celebrated their international debut in style and took the title in Linz – after just skating together for a few months. Performing to “I’m Gonna Be (500 miles)”, they won the Short Program in spite of a little mishap when he fell at the end of the step sequence. The team from Québec followed up with a solid Free Skating to “Radioactive” that featured a double Axel sequence and triple throws. The couple scored 158.28 points and has a good chance to make it to the Final in their first year on the circuit.
“We have been skating together for five months”, Ariano Kent revealed. “We didn’t think about winning, we just focused on doing our thing.” Laliberte Laurent added that they are going to the event in Budapest next and now hope to qualify for the ISU Junior Grand Prix Final.
Olivia Flores/Luke Wang (USA) claimed the silver medal in what was their first ISU Junior Grand Prix event (147.22 points). Wenning Shi/Zhiyu Wang (CHN) earned the bronze medal with 123.50 points in their international debut.
Grimm/Savitskiy (GER) back in business
ISU Junior Grand Prix Finalists Darya Grimm/Michail Savitskiy of Germany had a disappointing end of the season when they had to withdraw from the ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships after the Rhythm Dance due to illness. In Linz the Germans proved that they are back on track and secured the second ISU Junior Grand Prix title of their career. The team from Oberstdorf put out a strong Rhythm Dance to “Ticket to the Moon” that included level-four twizzles and a level-four lift. Grimm/Savitskiy hit seven out of the eight keypoints in the Rocker Foxtrot pattern dance. The German Junior Champions extended their lead with another excellent performance in the Free Dance to a new arrangement of “Habanera” (“Carmen”), producing a level-four dance spin and level-four lifts. They totaled 154.33 points.
Darya Grimm (GER) ISU Junior Grand Prix Linz (AUT). @Skate Austria
“It always feels great to win, obviously,” Savitskiy commented. “It feels great that we were able to deliver our programs well. Even with the lack of preparation we had, we did a pretty good job,” he continued. The team had lost some training time as Savitkiy fell sick recently. “I really like everything (about our new programs),” Grimm shared. “The Rhythm Dance suits us and the Free Dance is something new (for us) and we try to do our best.” The Ice Dancers are slated for the ISU Junior Grand Prix in Gdansk (POL) next and will go there with the goal in mind to qualify for their second consecutive ISU Junior Grand Prix Final.
Canada’s Chloe Nguyen/Brendan Giang picked up the silver medal in their international debut competition. The team from Vancouver turned in clean performances to “Let’s Dance” in the Rhythm Dance and to “Seeing is Believing”, “Aspects of Aspects” and “Love Changes Everything” in the Free Dance (144.75 points). Elliana and Ethan Peal (USA), who are coached by their father Robert Peal, a former World-level Ice Dancer, took the bronze on 142.83 points dancing to Janet Jackson songs in the Rhythm Dance and to music from “The Lord of the Rings” in the Free Dance.
The four gold medals went to four different ISU members: Korea, Slovakia, Canada and Germany. Korea and the USA were the most successful ISU members with three medals each (one gold, one silver and one bronze for Korea, one silver and two bronze for the USA). A total of 108 Skaters/Couples from 32 ISU Members competed in Linz.
The ISU Junior Grand Prix Series continues this week with the ISU JGP in Istanbul (TUR).
The ISU Junior Grand Prix features each year about 300 talented young Skaters aged 13 to 19 (21 for the male Ice Dance and Pair Skating partners) from Europe, North and South America, Asia, Oceania as well as Africa. Skaters/Couples earn points according to the results in each event and the top six in each discipline will advance to the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final, which will take place in Beijing (CHN) on December 7-10.
Full entry lists, results, the General Announcement and further information are available on the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series page.
The 2023/24 season marks the 26th edition of the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating which was introduced in 1997. The Series was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic in the 2020/21 season.
Junior Grand Prix Standings
The International Skating Union (ISU) has supported the Skating Federation of Ukraine since the start of the war, implementing ISU Communication 2469, and also granting financial support to assist Ukrainian Skaters. The ISU reiterates its sympathy for and solidarity to all affected by the War in Ukraine. The ISU maintains its condemnation of the Russian invasion of Ukraine in the strongest possible terms. The ISU Council met on June 9-11, 2023 and discussed the International Olympic Committee’s (IOC) recommendations of March 28, 2023 for International Federations on the participation of athletes with a Russian or Belarussian passport in international competitions. The ISU Council decided to explore the feasibility issues with regard to potential pathways to implement the IOC recommendations within ISU Sports. The Council will continue to monitor the situation in Ukraine and its impact on the ISU activity as well as the decisions and their implementation within the Olympic Movement. In the meantime, ISU Communication 2469 remains in force.
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.
Subscribe to the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating YouTube Channel to receive all the latest videos and follow the conversation with #JGPFigure.
ISU Junior Grand Prix Schedule
The schedules of each ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating events are available below:
23 - 26 Aug 2023 Bangkok/THA
30 Aug - 2 Sept 2023 Linz/AUT
6 - 9 Sept 2023 Istanbul/TUR
13 - 16 Sept 2023 Osaka/JPN
20- 23 Sept 2023 Budapest/HUN
27 - 30 Sep 2023 Gdansk/POL
04 - 07 Oct 2023 Yerevan (ARM)
About ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating
The ISU Junior Grand Prix Figure Skating Series started in 1997. It includes seven events and the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final. The Series features some of the up and coming Skaters of the world and provides young skaters aged 13 to 19 (21 for the male Ice Dance and Pair Skating partners) with the opportunity to compete at a high international level. A points system based on the ranking has been established to determine the qualifiers for the ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final. Points are obtained according to the results in each of the seven events and only the top six Skaters / Couples in each discipline can qualify for the Final. The ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating is financed by the ISU Development Program.
Since 2011 all events of the Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating are live streamed on the official ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating YouTube Channel.