By Louis Daignault
OBERSTDORF, Germany – Canadian ice dancers Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje won the gold medal on Saturday at the Nebelhorn Trophy, the traditional opener to the senior figure skating season.
The world championship silver medallists from Waterloo, Ont., unveiled their new short and free programs to the international judges and it appears they aced the test scoring 165.32 points. Madison Chock and Evan Bates of the U.S. were second at 163.73 and Nelli Zhiganshina and Alexander Gazsi of Germany were third at 147.10.
‘’We were very happy with how the competition concluded,’’ said Weaver. ‘’We were very calm in our free dance and although it’s new and fresh and early in the season we were able to put out a solid performance.
‘’Of course we have our work cut out for us for Skate Canada (October 31 to November 2 in Kelowna, B.C.). This is a program that is more difficult than what we’ve done in the past. It requires harder training and harder concentration and we are glad to see we are going in the right direction.’’
It was the second career international victory for the couple. They also won the Four Continents event in 2010.
‘’This is a great starting point,’’ said Poje. ‘’We still have much growth to go through from now until the end of the season. We’re glad we got to present it here and see what the skating community thought of it. With that feedback we can now work away at it even more for the Grand Prix season.’’
Elisabeth Paradis of Loretteville, Que., and François-Xavier Ouellette of Laval, Que., were fifth.
Elizaveta Tuktamysheva led Russia to a 1-2 finish in women’s competition while Veronik Mallet of Sept-Iles, Que., was seventh.
Canada also placed third in the team standings behind the U.S., in first and Russia.
Full results: http://www.isuresults.com/results/nt2014/.