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World Championships: Day 2 (Ladies’ Short/Free Dance)

The World Championships continued Thursday with the ladies short program and free dance events.


Reigning U.S. Champion Gracie Gold won the short program on Thursday at the TD Garden. She skated a clean short program to “El Chocio”, landing all of her jumps and earning level fours on her spins, which earned a personal best and season’s best score of 76.43.

“I’m just so happy, excited, proud and every emotion there could be,” Gold said at the press conference following the event. “To set a season’s best and personal best at Worlds was really a magical moment.

Sitting in second place is Anna Pogorilaya, of Russia. Pogorilaya was the last to skate in the event on Thursday. She too earned a personal best score(73.98) in the event.

“I’m happy for 50 percent because the free skate is stil to come,” Pogorilaya said.

Reigning European Champion Evgenia Medvedeva is in third place after the short program. Medvedeva had a shaky landing on her triple flip, but recovered to land a triple-toe combination and double Axel. She scored a 73.76.

Sitting less than a point out of second and third is three-time U.S. Champion Ashley Wagner. Wagner skated a very strong short program, earning a 73.16.

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“I’m so excited to finally get over the hump of the short program at Worlds,” Wagner said after her short program. “To have that short program at a home country Worlds – unbelievable.”

Fellow American Mirai Nagasu was notified just a week ago that she would be skating at Worlds after two-time U.S. silver medalist Polina Edmunds withdrew due to injury. Nagasu is in 10th place after the short program.

“I wasn’t even on the team until very recently, being here and on the team is a huge responsibility and I felt a lot of pressure. I was nervous up to the point of exhaustion, but the audience really supported me today, it was overwhelming,” said Nagasu after her skate.

The ladies event concludes on Friday evening.


Free Dance

Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron, of France, defended their title, earning their second World championship.  They earned level fours for all of their elements and set a new personal best of 118.17, which is the highest free dance score recorded. They earned a total score of 194.46.

“We didn’t expect these high marks at all. We were really able to give our best tonight,” said Papadakis.

U.S. Champions Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani won the silver medal. This is the brother and sister’s team second World medal. They won bronze in 2011. The Shibutanis’ free dance to Coldplay’s “Fix You” was highlighted by excellent lifts and step sequences, earning level fours for all their elements. They scored a 113.73 in the free dance, to earn a total score of 188.43.

“Alex and I are incredibly proud of this season. We’ve been working so hard and to have two moments like this in front of a home audience, you really can’t ask for anything more,” Maia said.

Finishing in third place, earning the bronze medal was 2015 World silver medalist Madison Chock and Evan Bates. Chock/Bates delivered a very strong performance, earning level fours for their lifts, footwork, twizzles and spins.  They scored a 113.31 in the free dance, earning a 185.77 overall.

“It was wonderful to skate here in front of the home crowd. The audience really helped us to pour our emotions into the program,” said Chock.

2014 World Champions Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte, of Italy, moved up from sixth in the short dance, to finish in fourth, while Canada’s Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje dropped from fourth to fifth. Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue moved up one spot to finish in sixth place.

The World Championships continues Friday with the pairs short program and the men’s free skate.