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Japan's Kozuka wins Skate America men's title

Current world ice dance champions win original dance category

Great Britain's John Kerr, left, and Sinead Kerr skate dring the Ice Dance Program at the Skate America Figure Skating competition on Saturday.

Great Britain's John Kerr, left, and Sinead Kerr skate dring the Ice Dance Program at the Skate America Figure Skating competition on Saturday.

Japan's Takahiko Kozuka captured the Skate America men's figure skating title here Saturday, capturing the free skate final after having placed only third in the short program.
Kozuka won the free skate with 146.08 points, edging world bronze medalist Johnny Weir by 1.43 points to take the overall title with 226.18 points, .98 ahead of Weir, the runner-up in both the short and long programs.
Two-time reigning U.S. champion Evan Lysacek, Friday's short program winner, took the ice last in the free skate but settled for third in the event on 141.91 and third overall with 223.21 points.
The men's showdown came in the season's first Grand Prix figure skating event, which comes 16 months before the 2010 Winter Olympics in nearby Vancouver, Canada.
World bronze medalist Kim Yu-Na of South Korea won the women's short program with 69.50 points with former world champion Miki Ando of Japan second at 57.80 and Japan's Yukari Nakano third at 57.46.
All three had a chance at the title in yesterday's concluding women's free skate. The ice dance crown was also to be decided.
It was a disappointing sixth-place debut for former world champion Kimmie Meissner, the defending Skate America champion who switched coaches last February to work with Richard Callaghan.
Mirai Nagasu led the US women in fourth on 56.42 with reigning world junior champion Rachael Flatt fifth on 54.92 and Meissner next on 54.90.
Reigning world and European pairs champions Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy of Germany captured the pairs title after winning the free skate competition.
Savchenko and Szolkowy took the free skate with 116.69 points to claim the overall title with 180.77 points.
Americans Keauna McLaughlin-Rockne Brubaker, second in the free skate with 115.67, were second overall at 172.6.
Russians Maria Mukhortova and Maxim Trankov, the short program winners but fourth in the free skate, third overall at 167.67.
Reigning world ice dance champions Isabelle Deiobel and Olivier Schoenfelder of France won the original dance to stretch their lead entering Sunday's free dance final routine.
The French duo won the original dance with 58.26 points to 57.74 for five-time British champions Sinead and John Kerr with Olympic runners-up Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto, the U.S. champions, third on 57.47.
Delobel and Schoenfelder lead the overall chase with 96.75 with Belbin and Agosto next on 95.10 and the Kerrs third on 92.11.


Updated : 2021-07-30 09:46 GMT+08:00