Daleman leads short program at 4 Continents
PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (AP) Canadians took the top two spots Thursday in the Four Continents women’s short program, with Gabrielle Daleman first and Kaetlyn Osmond second at the test event for the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Daleman opened with a triple toe loop-triple toe loop combination at the Gangneung Ice Arena and cleanly landed a triple lutz and a double axel for 68.25 points.
”It was a fight tonight, but I’m happy with what I was able to accomplish and with the overall package,” Daleman said. ”It’s been great competing in Korea for my second Four Continents and it is just so motivational and inspiring to compete in the Olympic rink.”
Osmond fell on the landing of her double axel and was second with 68.21 points. Elizabet Tursynbaeva of Kazakhstan was third with 66.87.
U.S. champion Karen Chen struggled and was 12th.
”It was definitely a rough performance,” Chen said. ”I came here with higher expectations and I was hoping I would be able to put out my best. Unfortunately that didn’t happen.
”This short definitely didn’t go well, but it’s another experience for me, so I hope to keep on improving.”
Fellow American Mirai Nigasu was fifth and Mariah Bell was seventh heading into the free skate. Nagasu cleanly landed her opening triple flip-triple toe loop, but stumbled on the landing of her triple loop.
Mai Mihara of Japan was fourth with 66.51 points.
In ice dance, 2010 Olympic champions Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada took the lead after the short dance with 79.75 points. Defending Four Continents champions Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani of the United States were second with 76.59, followed by teammates Madison Chock and Evan Bates with 74.67.
Virtue and Moir, who stopped competing for two seasons before returning for another Olympic run – they also won silver in 2014 – skated to music by Prince.
”Tessa and I were pretty happy actually with our performance,” Moir said. ”We made a little bit of a technical error in the middle of it, so it’s not ideal obviously, especially in the short program where we really have to capitalize on those technical points. But we came out and felt like we attacked it. We’ve been training this program really hard.”
In pairs, Wenjing Sui and Cong Han of China finished first with 80.75 points after the short program. While Xiaoyu Yu and Hao Zhang, also of China, were second with 75.20 points. Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford of Canada were third with 74.31.
The men’s short program and the ice dance free dance are on Friday.