SOCHI, Russia — Canadian ice dancers Laurence Fournier Beaudry and Nikolaj Soerensen won the bronze medal Saturday at the Rostelecom Cup.
It was a fourth medal in four competitions this season for the Montreal tandem. They were also third at their previous Grand Prix assignment at Skate America last month and also won silver medals at two ISU Challenger Series events.
Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov of Russia won the gold medal with 211.72 points. Charlene Guignard and Marco Fabbri of Italy were second at 203.71 and Fournier Beaudry and Soerensen followed at 191.40.
‘’We feel we’ve been improving from competition to competition,’’ said Fournier Beaudry. ‘’We’ve still got little things to work on, but we are happy with the progression. We had five weeks between Grand Prix so that’s been a good measuring stick for us.’’
In men’s competition, Roman Sadovsky of Vaughan, Ont., delivered his best performance of the season and was fourth with 253.80. Morisi Kvitelashvili of Georgia won the gold with 266.33, Mikhail Kolyada of Russia was second at 264.64 and Kazuki Tomono of Japan third at 264.19.
Sadovsky was third after Friday’s short program and produced a clean skate in his long. He had slight turns on his opening quad Salchow and triple Axel landings but would later comeback to land a clean quad Salchow in combination with a triple Salchow.
‘’To beat my season’s best by 30 points is a huge step for me,’’ said Sadovsky, 22, the 2020 Canadian champion. ‘’That was more or less what I wanted to do. I wanted to reflect the changes made since my last competition. I’m just going to keep going from here and keep training."
Kamila Valieva headed a Russian women's podium sweep to underline her status as favourite for the Olympic gold medal in Beijing.
The 15-year-old Valieva landed three quadruple jumps, two of them in combinations, to Ravel’s “Bolero” and scored 185.29 points in the free skate for a 272.71 total. Her short program, free skate and overall scores at the competition were all world records.
Valieva won by a crushing margin of 43 points from Elizaveta Tuktamysheva, the 2015 world champion who doesn't perform quad jumps but has stayed in contention with triple-triple combinations and strong presentation skills.
Tuktamysheva scored 229.23 to stay ahead of fellow Russian Maiia Khromykh, who had two quad jumps, stepping out on the landing of one of them. Khromykh scored 219.69 to recover from an erratic short program and take the final podium spot ahead of Mariah Bell of the United States.
Madeline Schizas of Oakville, Ont., placed sixth with a season’s best 192.14.
‘’My free skate wasn’t exactly what I was hoping,’’ said Schizas, fourth after the short program. ‘’I was happy with the fight I showed through the program. I’ve been really motivated this season by the quality of skating I’ve seen at the senior level.’’
Russia also swept the podium in the pairs as world champions Anastasia Mishina and Aleksandr Galliamov dominated the free skate after second place in the short program, to win with an overall 226.98 points.
Daria Pavliuchenko and Denis Khodykin were second on 212.59 and Iasmina Kadyrova and Ivan Balchenko took third on 193.58.
Kirsten Moore-Towers of St. Catharines, Ont., and Michael Marinaro of Sarnia, Ont., improved from seventh after the short program to fifth with the fifth best free skate.
‘’We definitely have much more than that but it was nice to get some confidence today,’’ said Marinaro. ‘’We still have quite a ways to go to be where we want to be.’’
-- With files from The Associated Press.
The Associated Press