James secures skating glory in Canada
Bermudian Vanessa James and her partner Morgan Ciprès skated their way to glory in the Skate Canada International at the weekend.
The pair, representing France, claimed the overall pairs title by a comfortable margin after sweeping both the short programme and free skate.
James and Ciprès laid a solid foundation after winning the short programme with 74.51 points on Friday.
Their routine to Alanis Morissette’s Uninvited featured a commanding triple twist, side-by-side triple toe loops and a determined throw triple flip.
The pair also won the free skate 24 hours later with 147.30 points to capture the fifth Grand Prix medal of their career and clinch the overall crown on 221.81.
Skating to Wicked Game, James and Ciprès stood out in the field, opening with a glorious throw triple twist followed by side-by-side triple toe loop-double toe loop-double toe loop combinations and side-by-side triple Salchows. They also landed a solid throw triple Lutz and throw triple Salchow.
“That is the best free skate ever,” James told goldenskate.com. “We have been skating close to it in practice so that’s why we were so confident. We gave so much emotion, and at the end, it was just magic for us. It is going to be hard to beat now. I’m kind of nervous actually.”
Peng Cheng and Jin Yang, of China, finished second overall on 201.08 points, a mere .15 ahead of Canadians Kirsten Moore-Towers and Michael Marinaro.
Skate Canada is the second event of the Grand Prix circuit.
James, whose father Kevin is Bermudian, was born in Ontario, Canada but lived in Bermuda until the age of ten when her family moved to Virginia.
During her time on the island she attended Mount St Agnes. Her twin sister Melissa is also a figure skater.
James and Ciprès have been competing together since 2010 during which time they have appeared in many figure skating competitions and have won several medals, including bronze medal at this year’s world championships.