Two golden skates for Canada at ISU Junior Grand Prix

OSTRAVA, Czech Republic – Canada won the gold medal in pairs and ice dancing on Friday at the third stop on the ISU Junior Grand Prix figure skating circuit.

The winners were Mackenzie Bent of Uxbridge, Ont., and Garrett MacKeen of Oshawa, Ont., in ice dancing and Julianne Séguin of Longueuil, Que., and Charlie Bilodeau of Trois-Pistoles, Que., in pairs.

In ice dancing, Bent and MacKeen collected their second career junior Grand Prix win and fourth podium overall with a 138.17 score. The overall and free program scores were international bests for the Canadians. Betina Popova and Yuri Vlasenko of Russia were second at 131.42 and Lorraine McNamara and Quinn Carpenter of the U.S., third at 130.79.

‘’We delivered what we’d been doing in training and that’s very pleasing,’’ said Bent, 17. ‘’It wasn’t a perfect skate but we headed into this competition confident with both programs.’’

Last year, the couple saw a super season end on a sour note with a 12th place finish at the junior world championships.

‘’Obviously it was important for us to get off on the right track this season,’’ said MacKeen, 20. ‘’We’ve come in this season with some changes including two different programs and so far it’s really worked out.’’

Danielle Wu and Spencer Soo of Burnaby, B.C., were sixth.

In pairs, Séguin and Bilodeau delivered a near-flawless performance to music from Peter Gabriel to win the gold with 159.40 points.  Lina Fedorova and Maxim Miroshkin of Russia were second at 144.62 and their compatriots Kamilla Gainetdinova and Sergei Alexeev third at 134.43.

‘’We worked really hard for this so we are not totally surprised,’’ said Séguin, 17. ‘’We knew we had improved a lot from last season. We felt in control of our program and landing the side-by-side jump early in the program gave us a lot of confidence.’’

The pair joined forces last season and produced two top-five finishes in the ISU Junior Grand Prix circuit and were second at junior nationals. This season they want to start making noise at the senior level nationally.

‘’We want to skate like a senior pair team this year,’’ said Bilodeau, 21. ‘’Last year, we focused on developing chemistry on the ice. Now we’ve expanded to display emotion and maturity as well, and this program helps us do that.’’

Canada has another medal contender in men’s competition as Roman Sadovsky of Vaughan, Ont., grabbed the lead after an excellent short program on Friday earning 67.51 points. Alexander Samarin of Russia is second at 62.42 and Sei Kawahara of Japan stands third at 60.55.

In women’s competition after Thursday’s short program, Kim DeGuise-Léveillée of Sorel-Tracy, Que., is 10th.

Competition ends Saturday with the men’s and women’s free skates.

Videos of routines available on the ISU YouTube channel

Full results:

ISU Junior Grand Prix Circuit Continues as Canadian Team Heads to Czech Republic

OTTAWA, ON: Skate Canada will send eight skaters, for a total of five entries to Ostrava, Czech Republic, from September 3-7, 2014, for the third ISU Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating of the season. Canada will have one entry per category in men’s, ladies, and pair, and two entries in ice dance.

Roman Sadovsky, 15, Vaughan, Ont., will be the Canadian entry in the men’s division. Last season, Sadovsky placed 14th at the ISU Junior Grand Prix in Riga, Latvia, eighth in Minsk, Belarus, and 13th at the 2014 ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships. He also placed eighth at the 2014 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships in the senior category. He is coached by Tracey Wainman and Gregor Filipowski at the YSRA Winter Club.

Kim DeGuise-Léveillée, 16, Sorel-Tracy, Que., will represent Canada in ladies. This will be her first ISU Junior Grand Prix assignment. Representing CPA Sorel-Tracy, she is the 2014 Canadian junior champion. DeGuise-Léveillée is coached by Josée Picard and Marc-André Craig in Chambly, Que.

Julianne Séguin, 17, Longueuil, Que., and Charlie Bilodeau, 21, Trois-Pistoles, Que., will be the Canadian entry in the pair. Last season, they placed fourth at this event, and fifth at the ISU Junior Grand Prix in Minsk, Belarus. Séguin and Bilodeau, representatives of CPA Longueuil and CPA De Drummondville Inc., are the 2014 Canadian junior pair silver medallists. They are coached by Josée Picard and Patrice Archetto in Chambly, Que.

Mackenzie Bent, 17, Uxbridge, Ont., and Garrett MacKeen, 20, Oshawa, Ont., are the first of two Canadian entries in ice dance. Last season, they won gold at the ISU Junior Grand Prix in Riga, Latvia, placed seventh at the ISU Junior Grand Prix in Kosice, Slovakia, and placed 12th at the ISU World Junior Figure Skating Championships.Representing Uxbridge SC and Bowmanville FSC,Bent and MacKeen are the 2014 Canadian junior ice dance champions. They train at Scarboro Ice Dance Elite with coaches Juris Razgulajevs and Carol Lane.

Danielle Wu, 16, Burnaby, B.C., and Spencer Soo, 17, Burnaby, B.C., will also represent Canada in ice dance. Last season, they placed fifth at this event, and fourth in junior ice dance at the 2014 Canadian Tire National Skating Championships. Wu and Soo are coached by Megan Wing and Aaron Lowe at the BC Centre of Excellence.

Carolyn Allwright of Kitchener, Ont., will be the Canadian team leader. Dr. Ed Pilat of Winnipeg, Man., and physiotherapist Shirley Kushner of Westmount, Que., will be the Canadian medical team onsite. Cynthia Benson of Quispamsis, N.B., and Jacqueline Wickett Warren of Ottawa, Ont., are the Canadian officials at the event.

The ISU will be live streaming the competition via the ISU Junior Grand Prix YouTube channel.

For results and full entries please visit

CANADIAN ENTRIES AT ISU JGP #3 – Ostrava, Czech Republic

Discipline Name Age Hometown Club Coach
Men’s Roman Sadovsky 15 Vaughan, Ont. YRSA Winter Club Tracey Wainman / Gregor Filipowski
Ladies Kim DeGuise-Léveillée 16 Sorel-Tracy, Que. CPA Sorel-Tracy Josée Picard / Marc-André Craig
Pairs Julianne Séguin / Charlie Bilodeau 17/21 Longueuil, Que. / Trois-Pistoles, Que. CPA Longueuil / CPA De Drummondville Inc. Josée Picard / Patrice Archetto
Ice Dance Mackenzie Bent / Garrett MacKeen 17/20 Uxbridge, Ont. / Oshawa, Ont. Uxbridge SC / Bowmanville FSC Juris Razgulajevs / Carol Lane
Ice dance Danielle Wu / Spencer Soo 16/17 Burnaby, B.C. / Burnaby, B.C. Burnaby FSC / Burnaby FSC Megan Wing / Aaron Lowe

Skate Canada launches revitalized CanSkate program

OTTAWA, ON: In rinks all across the country this fall, Canadians will experience the revitalized CanSkate program. Using every inch of the ice surface, skaters will learn the basics of skating through a complete series of balance, control and agility skills taught in six stages. CanSkate uses tested and proven new curriculum and delivery methods that guarantee skater success in developing stronger basic skills and developing them faster.

Skate Canada clubs and skating schools will implement the new CanSkate program beginning September 1, 2014. The trademark learn-to-skate program was updated to reflect the principles in Sport Canada’s long-term athlete development plan (LTAD).

“For decades CanSkate has been teaching the best skaters in Canada how to skate. The program which has produced such great skaters as Patrick Chan, Tessa Virtue, Scott Moir and also hockey players like Jeff Skinner and Nathan MacKinnon has a proven track record of success,” said Dan Thompson, Skate Canada Chief Executive Officer. “The new CanSkate program will continue to offer all the components to create great skaters with fundamental skating skills that will transfer to all ice sports.”

The new program includes specific skills that pertain to hockey, ringette, speed skating and figure skating.  The result is a dynamic new program that prepares any skater for every ice sport. CanSkate is also modeled for the recreational skater to learn an active lifestyle activity.

Along with the new curriculum, other features include a fresh new look, new awards and great tools for coaches. Skate Canada is proud to have all its programs taught by professional coaches who are specially trained and certified through the National Coaching Certification Program (NCCP).

CanSkate: Only The Best Can Bring Out Their Best

Action, movement and fun! Lessons are given in a group format with a coach-to-student ratio of a maximum 1:10. Skaters progress at their own rate and coaches make sessions active using teaching aids, upbeat music and a wide variety of activities that create a motivational environment and promote learning.  Badges, ribbons and other incentives are used to benchmark skaters’ progress and reward effort and participation.

Skate Canada clubs from across Canada are excited as they prepare to deliver the new CanSkate and welcome all Canadians to learn the joy of skating. Please visit the Skate Canada website to find a club in your area.