Kim Yu-na is back atop the podium, winning the world title Saturday night at London, Ont., in her first appearance at the World Figure Skating Championships in two years.
The reigning Olympic champion looked as if she'd never been away, with an exquisite and elegant performance that left the audience spellbound. The crowd was on its feet long before she finished her final spin, and Kim clapped a hand to her mouth as she looked around the arena. That she'd won wasn't a question, but rather by how much.
With a score of 218.31, she was more than 20 points ahead of defending champion Carolina Kostner. Japan's Mao Asada was third.
The U.S. women, meanwhile, regained a third spot for the Sochi Olympics as Ashley Wagner finished fifth and Gracie Gold was sixth.
Kaetlyn Osmond, of Newfoundland, skating in just her third senior competition ever, dropped from fourth to eighth, but that was more than enough to guarantee two Canadian places in the event for the Sochi Olympics in 2014, her main goal coming in.
Osmond was fourth after the short program, a remarkable result for the young skater who was 10th at the world juniors last year.
She fell twice in her free program to "Carmen" -- first on her triple flip, and then on her triple toe loop right after.
"It is exhausting, especially when you take a fall and then another fall right afterward, it shocks you because you're not so used to it, and you just wanted to skate so well here," she said. "Maybe I did make those mistakes but I was going out there just to have fun and I accomplished that."
Kim, meanwhile, looked like she'd never left the sport, landing six triple jumps en route to an almost-20 point victory over Kostner.
Osmond, who skated right before Kim, said she learned plenty from the world championships that will help the next time she steps onto the international ice.
"Being in front of a crowd like that, and being on the ice with so many top skaters, I think it helped that I was there with them, to make me think: OK, the next time it happens, I probably won't be so shocked and so excited about being there, I'll probably be more calm."