Road To The Olympic Games

Figure Skating

Canada's Seguin, Bilodeau win 1st Grand Prix gold at Skate America

Julianne Seguin and Charlie Bilodeau skated to a first-place finish after a solid pairs free skate program at the 2016 Skate America on Saturday in Chicago.

Nguyen sets personal best, Daleman barely misses podium earlier in Chicago

It's the first Grand Prix gold medal for the Canadian couple 7:29

Julianne Seguin and Charlie Bilodeau skated to a first-place finish after a solid pairs free skate program at Skate America on Saturday, the first stop on the Grand Prix circuit. 

The Canadian duo recorded a total score of 197.31, vaulting the Quebec skaters from Friday's third-place result (66.49) in the pairs short program, to first on Saturday. 

Seguin, 19, and Bilodeau, 23, landed an impressive triple twist along with a side-by-side triple toe-double toe Saturday in their gold-medal performance. 

This is the best result for Seguin and Bilodeau on the Grand Prix circuit after winning bronze in two events last season. 

"Our long program was really good," said Seguin, a Longueuil, Que., native. "It was at the level that we wanted. We delivered a strong performance and we were confident throughout the program. We are proud of ourselves."

Bilodeau, from Trois-Pistoles, Que., also couldn't hide his excitement. 

"We showed we could put behind the errors we made in the short program," he added. "'We just looked forward to the next program and making sure all the elements were there. We are super happy."

Russia's Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov won the short program by a comfortable margin on Friday but stumbled on a quad twist early in their routine on Saturday, which dropped the duo to third place (185.94). 

Haven Denney and Brandon Frazier of the United States won the silver. (192.65). 

Nam Nguyen sets personal best

Nam Nguyen set a personal best in the Skate America men's short program, but it was only good enough for fourth after strong performances from his opponents on Saturday in Chicago. 

The 18-year-old Ottawa native set a personal best with a score of 79.62 7:24

The 18-year-old Ottawa native – competing for the first time with new coach David Glynn – scored 79.62 while skating to "Love Me or Leave Me" by Sammy Davis Jr.

Japan's Shoma Uno landed two quad jumps and secured the lead, with Americans Adam Rippon and Jason Brown close behind in second and third place.

Uno landed two quad jumps in scoring 89.15 points heading into the free program 5:00

The free skate will determine the winner on Sunday at Sears Centre Arena.

"Everything went as I was practicing," Uno said through an interpreter. "It was unexpected that I missed the triple toe at the end of the combination, but the quad went really well, maybe too well. Overall it was a good performance."

Uno scored 89.15 points, while Rippon had 87.32 points and Brown got 85.75 points. Rippon didn't attempt a quad, while Brown fell on his opening quad toeloop.

Daleman falls short of podium

Newmarket, Ont.'s Gabrielle Daleman was less than three points shy of a bronze medal, finishing fourth overall with 186.63 points after the women's free skate.

The 18-year-old from Newmarket, Ontario narrowly missed the podium with a score of 186.63 points 5:47

Ashley Wagner won the women's title, edging California training partner Mariah Bell.

Wagner, the world silver medallist, overcame a few mistakes in her free skate for her second Skate America title in five seasons.

The American won her second Skate America women's title with a score of 196.44 points 6:22

"Today was a little sticky, but at the end of the day I got the job done," said Wagner. "I think I built upon what I did at the Japan Open. It felt like more of a complete program and I think that's what pulled me through today. Beyond that, I think I have some serious spin levels to work on going into Cup of China; they were dearly missed today."

Wagner, who also noted problems with her loop combination, finished with 196.44 points.

Bell finished second (191.59) while Japan's Mai Mihara (189.28) came in third.  

American duo wins short ice dance

Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani of the United States won the short ice dance program on Saturday.

The American duo posted a top score of 73.04 while Russians Ekaterina Bobrova and Dmitri Soloviev (68.92) finished second. U.S.A.'s Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue (68.78) rounded out the top three.

The ice dance free program on Sunday will determine the champion at the Sears Centre Arena. 

With files from, Louis Daignault, The Associated Press

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