Les Suprêmes Novice and Evolution Intermediate took first steps towards national titles Thursday as the 2014 Skate Canada Synchronized Skating Championships kicked off in Burnaby, B.C.

BURNABY, B.C. – Les Suprêmes Novice and Evolution Intermediate took first steps towards national titles Thursday as the 2014 Skate Canada Synchronized Skating Championships kicked off in Burnaby, B.C.

Les Suprêmes, from Quebec, set the early pace in the novice category, scoring 34.73 to take a slim lead into Friday’s second free program. NEXXICE, representing Western Ontario, holds down second spot at 31.99.

Defending novice champions Les Pirouettes of Quebec scored 29.60 and are currently sixth.

In the first of two intermediate free programs, Quebec’s Evolution scored 33.90 to take the lead heading into Friday’s second free program. Synchronicity, the defending intermediate national champions from Western Ontario, are in second with 32.78 points, while another Quebec team, Nova, holds down third spot at 32.63.

More than 40 teams from across Canada are competing for Canadian crowns at the Bill Copeland Sports Centre in novice, intermediate, open, junior and senior.

Both the novice and intermediate teams will battle for medals Friday followed by the Open Free Program #1 and the junior and senior short programs.

Competition wraps up Saturday with the second Open free program as well as the junior and senior free programs. The senior gold and silver medallists will represent Canada at the 2014 ISU World Synchronized Skating Championships in Courmayeur, Italy in April.

Single-day tickets are available at the door. Ticket prices are $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and $5 for children (ages 6-16).