Road To The Olympic Games

Virtue, Moir lead after 2 events at Paris Grand Prix

Canadian ice dancers Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir lead at the Trophée Bompard figure-skating competition in Paris after dominating the compulsory and original dance programs on Friday.

Canadian ice dancers Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir have extended their lead at the Trophée Bompard figure-skating competition in Paris after a strong original-dance program on Friday.

Virtue, from London, Ont., and Moir, from Ilderton, Ont. — Canada's hopes for a figure-skating medal at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics — led after the compulsory dance earlier Friday.

The couple scored 38.41 points for the compulsory and 61.91 for their original routine. Their total of 100.32 was good for a 8.45-point lead heading into the free dance routine on Saturday.

"We were pleased with both our performances," Virtue said. "It's always a bit nerve-wracking to unveil new routines but it was nice to get that done successfully and have it well received. Our compulsory was smooth and our original dance was strong and powerful. It's a great way to start the Olympic year."

Competing twice in one day didn't bother the duo. The compulsories were held in the morning and the original dance in the evening.

"We do our routines twice everyday in training," said Moir. "Obviously there is a lot to do to get ready prior to each skate at a competition but we tried to approach it as if it were two different days."

French pair Nathalie Pechalat and Fabian Bourzat moved up to second place with 91.87 points after impressing the judges with their original dance.

British siblings Sinead and John Kerr slipped to third, 1.01 behind the Pechalat and Bourzat.

Virtue and Moir are making their return to the Grand Prix circuit after missing all of last season because of a leg injury to Virtue. They came back in January and ended the season with a bronze medal at the world championships.

"It's neat to be at the first event of the year," Virtue said. "Not competing last year on the circuit made us realize how important these events are."

This is the first time the Trophée Bompard has opened the six-event ISU Grand Prix, which traditionally starts with Skate America. Skaters collect points toward a place in the Grand Prix final in December in Tokyo.

With files from The Associated Press

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