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The French team of Isabelle Delobel, left, and partner Olivier Schoenfelder held on to first place in the ice dance competition at Skate America Saturday in Everett, Wash. ((Timothy A. Clary/Getty Images))

World ice dance champions Isabelle Delobel and Olivier Schoenfelder of France remained in first place Saturday after the original dance portion at Skate America in Everett, Wash.

The French pair build on their strong start with a score of 96.75 points following two of the three segments.

Americans Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto sit in second place with a two-day total of 95.10, and Great Britain's Sinead and John Kerr stand third at 92.11.

Allie Hann-McCurdy of Nanaimo, B.C., and Michael Coreno, of Delhi, Ont., remain in  ninth place with 71.18.

Belbin and Agosto didn't fall out of second despite finishing third in the original dance.

The five-time national champions and Olympic silver medallists switched coaches and training sites in the off-season in the hope of improving their results on the international stage.

"We need to work hard to bring ourselves up to the level of the program," he said.

With files from the Associated Press