Virtue and Moir shine as hosts dominate Skata Canada International
The home nation enjoyed a strong start on the opening day of the Skate Canada International, including ice dance reigning world champions Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir storming to the top of the leaderboard with a record-breaking short dance performance.
The six-time Skate Canada champions earned a level four for all five elements to post a personal best score of 82.68 points ahead of Saturday's free dance.
Teammates Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje came second with another strong outing, scoring a personal best 77.47 to edge out 2014 Four Continents champions Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue of the USA by a little over a point.
"We had a great a summer and fall training and we were very confident, but to come here and execute is a kind of a different story," said Moir. "A great off-season and a great start to the season creates some pressure, so it was nice for us to go out and execute very similar to the way we have been training. There are things we're looking to improve, but for Tessa and I we are all smiles today."
Earlier in the day Kaetlyn Osmond had got the event off to a strong start for Canada by scoring 76.06 in the ladies short program.
That was comfortably clear of nearest challengers, Anna Pogorilaya and Maria Sotskova of Russia, who scored 69.05 and 66.10 respectively.
The 21-year-old was also on personal best-setting form although she believes there are still improvements to be made ahead of Saturday's free skate.
"There are definitely a few things that I want to improve," Osmond said. "But for today I was happy that I was able to do what I do in practice, which is to focus on each element at a time. I felt confident on the ice and it all went very well today."
That was ahead of Canada's two-time World champions Meagan Duhamel and Eric Redford and Vanessa James and Morgan Cipres, of France, who are almost tied in second and third place respectively.
And in the men's competition, it Is Japan's Shoma Uno who comfortably leads at the halfway stage, posting a score of 103.62 from his short program.
Two-time Olympic silver medallist Patrick Chan of Canada lies second on 94.43 with American Jason Brown third on 90.71. Sportsbeat 2017