Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON (FRA) at the ISU World Figure Skating Championships in Milan 2018©International Skating Union (ISU)
The last spots for the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final are on the line when top Figure Skaters such as reigning World Champion Nathan CHEN (USA) and three-time Ice Dance World Champions Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON (FRA) compete this week at the Internationaux de France in Grenoble. The Internationaux de France are the sixth and last event of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series 2018/19.
Overview of the event
Nathan CHEN (USA) at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating - Skate America (USA)2018©Getty Images
Following his victory at Skate America last month, Nathan CHEN has an excellent shot at making his second consecutive ISU Grand Prix Final. Competition should come from two-time World bronze medalist Boyang JIN (CHN), Alexander SAMARIN (RUS), Dmitri ALIEV (RUS) and Jason BROWN (USA). However, since these men did not make the podium in their first Grand Prix, their chances for the Final are not as good. Jin needs to win, Samarin needs to place at least second in order to qualify for example. Other competitors include Daniel Samohin (ISR), Kevin Aymoz (FRA) and Deniss Vasiljevs (LAT).
Rika KIHIRA (JPN) at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating - NHK Trophy (JPN)2018©International Skating Union (ISU)
The battle for the last available spots in the Grand Prix Final should be exciting in the Ladies event. NHK Trophy Champion Rika KIHIRA (JPN) hopes to seal her spot, but she needs to watch out for two-time World Champion Evgenia MEDVEDEVA (RUS), who after taking bronze at Skate Canada, needs a victory in order to be sure to go to Vancouver. Grand Prix Helsinki silver medalist Stanislava KONSTANTINOVA (RUS) also has a chance to go to the Final. Other contenders include Mai MIHARA (JPN), Bradie TENNELL (USA) and Alexia PAGANINI (SUI).
Vanessa JAMES / Morgan CIPRES (FRA) at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating - Skate Canada (CAN)2018©International Skating Union (ISU)
In the Pairs, World bronze medalists Vanessa JAMES / Morgan CIPRES (FRA) are keen on qualifying for their first ISU Grand Prix Final after winning Skate Canada International last month. Aleksandra BOIKOVA / Dmitrii KOZLOVSKII (RUS), who ranked fourth in Canada, have a realistic chance to qualify as well. Other competitors include 2018 Four Continents bronze medalists Tae Ok RYOM / Ju Sik KIM (PRK), Minerva Fabienne HASE / Nolan SEEGERT (GER) and 2018 Four Continents Champions Tarah KAYNE / Danny O'SHEA (USA).
Kaitlin HAWAYEK / Jean-Luc BAKER (USA) at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating - NHK Trophy (JPN)2018©International Skating Union (ISU)
Three-time World Champions Gabriella PAPADAKIS / Guillaume CIZERON (FRA) lead the Ice Dance field, however, after pulling out of NHK Trophy due to Cizeron suffering from a back injury, the team has no realistic chance to qualify for the Final anymore. The battle for the last spots will happen between NHK Trophy Champions Kaitlin HAWAYEK / Jean-Luc BAKER (USA), Skate Canada silver medalists Victoria SINITSINA / Nikita KATSALAPOV (RUS) and bronze medalists Piper GILLES / Paul POIRIER. Other competitors are NHK Trophy bronze medalists Rachel PARSONS / Michael PARSONS (USA), Marie-Jade LAURIAULT / Romain LE GAC (FRA) and Olivia SMART / Adrian DIAZ (ESP).
Overall, 57 Skaters/Couples representing 14 ISU Members compete at Internationaux de France November 23-25, the sixth and final event in the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series. The top 6 qualifiers in each discipline will proceed to the Final in Vancouver (CAN), December 6 to 9, 2018.
The ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series is available as a live stream and on demand in territories without TV Right restrictions on the ISU Skating Channel.
Schedule of the event
Friday, November 23 Men’s Short Program, Rhythm Dance, Ladies & Pairs Short Program
Saturday, November 24 Men’s Free Skating, Free Dance, Ladies & Pairs Free Skating
Sunday, November 25 Exhibition Gala
For full entry lists and further information regarding the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series please visit here. Follow the discussion on social media by using #FigureSkating #GPFigure.