Duhamel, Radford golden while Virtue and Moir skate to world record

Eric Radford and Meagan Duhamel took home gold in the pairs program after finishing strong in the free skate on Saturday. 

After entering the second event in second place behind Chinese duo Cheng Peng and Yanj Jin, the Canadians roared to the front of pack, finishing with a total score of 204.56.

“As with the short program, there were some strong elements and some unfortunate mistakes,” Radford said. “My body got tight and tired at the end of the program and I just had a slight problem with that last lift.”

The GP Final will be held in Marseille, France, from Dec. 8-11.

The other pairs to qualify for the final are: Aliona Savchenko and Bruno Massot of Germany; Xiaoyu Yu and Hao Zhang of China; Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov of Russia; and Julianne Seguin and Charlie Bilodeau of Canada.

“It’s a quick turnaround to the GP Final,” Radford said. “So we can’t change much but we want to have two cleaner skates in Marseille. With all the top skaters there, we will need to skate closer to our best.”

Peng and Jin took silver after finishing second in the free skate with a total score of 196.87. 

Xuehan Wang and Lei Wang won bronze after finishing third in both the free and short programs. 

Hanyu electrifies home crowd

Yuzuru Hanyu continued to run roughshod over the men’s field in Saturday’s free program. The Japanese skater and defending Olympic champion posted a combined score of 301.47 for gold, more than 30 points than runner-up Nathan Chen.

Yuzuru Hanyu electrifies home crowd with golden free skate10:15

Nam Nguyen of Toronto and Elladj Balde of Pierrefonds, Que., finished eighth and 10th.

On the ladies’ side, Russia’s Anna Pogorilaya won both the short and free program skates to capture gold, while Alaine Chartrand of Prescott, Ont., was 10th in women’s competition.

Virtue and Moir in 1st after one event

Virtue, Moir perched atop Ice Dance pack after short skate in Japan6:28

Canada’s Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir continue to shine on their return to international competition. 

The ice dance duo finished first during the short dance portion of the Grand Prix of Figure Skating’s NHK Trophy event in Sapporo, Japan on Friday.

Virtue and Moir secured top place with a new world-record short dance score of 79.47, while rivals and reigning world champions Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron of France finished second with 75.60.

The free dance portion of the event will take place on Saturday at 9:45 p.m. ET on CBCSports.ca and the CBC Sports app. ​

You can watch more NHK Trophy action on Saturday (2 p.m. ET) and Sunday (2 p.m. ET) on Road to the Olympic Games, our weekly show spotlighting the best high-performance athletes from Canada and around the world.

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