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Surprise! Rippon in lead and Russians take pairs title at junior worlds

Surprise! Rippon in lead and Russians take pairs title at junior worlds

American Adam Rippon won the short program to no surpise at the junior world figure skating championships on Wednesday.
Also, Russia's Ksenia Krasilnikova and Konstantin Bezmaternykh won the pairs title after finishing third the last two years.
Rippon's score of 69.35 points gave him a three-point lead over Russia's Artem Borodulin (66.16) and fellow American Brandon Mroz (63.36) going into Thursday's free skate.
Rippon won the junior Grand Prix Final in December and the U.S. junior men's title last month.
"The competition here was very strong," he said. "My goal coming into this competition was just to skate two clean programs as best as I could. Today in the short program I feel that I did that."
Rippon did a triple lutz-triple toe loop combination as well as a triple loop, and he received level fours _ the highest _ for both his combination spin and flying sit spin. That was enough to edge Borodulin and Mroz, who finished second to Rippon at both the junior Grand Prix Final and U.S. championships.
But Mroz, especially, will be tough in the free skate. He does a triple axel _ his combination on Wednesday was a triple axel-triple toe loop _ and also has solid spins.
Krasilnikova and Bezmaternykh have been stuck on the bronze medal the last two years. But they were the heavy favorites this year. Last year's silver medalists, Vera Bazarova and Yuri Larionov, are out pending review of a drug test, according to the event Web site.
The Russians made two errors in their free skate, and actually finished second in that segment to countrymen Liubov Iliushechkina and Nodari Maisuradze. But they'd built up a big enough lead in the short program to hold onto first place.
Krasilnikova and Bezmaternykh finished with 148.12 points, while Iliushechkina and Maisuradze had 144.86 points. China's Dong Huibo and Wu Yiming were third with 141.33 points.
"We are not so happy with our performance tonight," Krasilnikova said. "I made two errors, on the jump and on the twist, but we're pleased that we finished first."
Krasilnikova two-footed the first jump in a side-by-side double axel sequence, and they also only managed a double twist. Iliushechkina fell on a double axel, and had to put a hand down on the landing of another jump.
Still, it was a solid showing for the silver medalists, who were competing in their first international event.


Updated : 2021-03-08 00:44 GMT+08:00