The highest-ranked skaters from the 2017 Grand Prix Series will go head-to-head at the senior Grand Prix Final in Nagoya, Japan, Dec. 7-10.
For the first time in years, two of the top stars in the sport, Japan’s Yuzuru Hanyu and Spain’s Javier Fernández will be absent. Hanyu continues to recover from an ankle injury. Neither he nor Fernández qualified for the Final. Evgenia Medvedeva withdrew due to injury.
Fourteen skaters/teams that competed at the Grand Prix Final in 2016-17 will be battling it out once again this season.
Three American, two Russian and one Japanese man qualified for the Final. Nathan Chen is a sure bet to capture the title ahead of Shoma Uno, but who will mine bronze is a question mark. Mikhail Kolyada of Russia is favoured to claim the third spot on the podium but, as we all know, ice is slippery.
Will Alina Zagitova continue the Russian tradition in ladies of winning the Grand Prix Final in their first season in the senior ranks? She will have some tough competition from her teammate Maria Sotskova and Canada’s Kaetlyn Osmond. Italy’s Carolina Kostner and Satoko Miyahara and Wakaba Higuchi of Japan round out the six competitors.
Expect a showdown in the pairs even wth Aljona Savchenko and Bruno Massot of Germany and China’s Wenjing Sui and Cong Han. Neither team has ever won a Final crown to date, so there is a lot riding on this competition.
And another battle will be waged in ice dance with French stars Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron taking on their training mates Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada. Three American teams and one from Italy will be in the hunt for the third spot on the podium.
OFFICIAL WEBSITE (Japanese only)
JUNIOR GRAND PRIX FINAL