Ice dancers Madeline Edwards of Port Moody, B.C., and Zhaio Kai Pang of Burnaby, B.C., won’t soon forget the bronze medal they won on Saturday at the fourth stop on the ISU Junior Grand Prix figure skating circuit.
In men’s singles, 14-year-old Nam Nguyen of Vancouver added a second career Junior Grand Prix medal finishing third.
In the ice dance warm-up, Edwards and Kai Pang stumbled on a manoeuvre and crashed into the boards.
“We were feeling OK, after the fall,” said Edwards,16, a year younger than her partner. “We just trusted in our training. We kept telling ourselves that we had done this routine a thousand of times.”
The Canadians bounced back and produced the second best free dance of the day to climb from fourth to third overall with a personal best 135.01 points. It was their second bronze medal this season on the circuit and it puts them in an excellent position to be in the Grand Prix final this December in Sochi, Russia, the host city of the 2014 Winter Olympics.
“We were not expecting this kind of start to the season at all,” said Kai Pang. “We just go out and try to skate our best. We know that if we work hard, we keep improving.”
Alexandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin of Russia won the gold medal with 147.73 points while Shari Koch and Christian Nuechtern of Germany were second at 136.21.
In men’s singles, American Jason Brown took the gold at 198.16, Alexander Petrov of Russia was second at 174.75 and Nguyen, the 2011 world junior champion, followed at 171.56. That bettered his personal best of 169.55 set in a third place finish at last year’s Grand Prix in Romania.
“I made a couple of mistakes that were costly so I’m definitely going to work on that when I get home,” said Nguyen, who cleanly landed six of his seven jumps in his free program performed to music by Bach. “I popped my opening triple flip but that didn’t affect my confidence at all. I just forgot about it and kept going.”
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