The 2018 World Junior Championships take place March 7-11, at the Arena Armeec in Sofia, Bulgaria. This will be the final junior competition for many who will transition into the senior ranks next season.
Places at the World Junior Championships are determined by the results achieved at the Championships in the preceding year. Russia is the only nation that will field a full complement of skaters (3) in all four disciplines.
With the champions from the 2017 World Junior Championships having transitioned into the senior ranks this season, the door is wide open for new stars to emerge. There are no sure bets in any discipline at this stage.
The U.S. is fielding three men, two of whom competed at the 2017 World Junior Championships: Tomoki Hiwatashi and Alexei Krasnozhon, with Camden Pulkinen making his debut. Russia is also fielding two experienced men — Alexey Erokov and Roman Savosin.
The showdown in ladies will be between Russia and Japan. Two very talented young ladies from Moscow (Alexandra Trusova and Alena Kostornaia) will likely capture the first and second spots on the podium, with one of the Japanese stars capturing the third.
There is no doubt Russia will dominate in pairs and will likely sweep the podium. Which team will claim the gold is an unknown at this time. Anastasia Mishina and Aleksander Galliamov, who teamed up in the spring of 2017 are on an upward trend. Lack of experience on Galliamov′s part could hold them back from capturing the crown at this competition.
In ice dance, it will be a Russia/U.S./Canada battle with each nation fielding strong teams. Many expect the U.S. duo of Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko to scoop the gold, but Anastasia Skoptcova and Kirill Aleshin of Russia will prove strong rivals for the American team.
The 2018 World Junior Championships will be live-streamed on the ISU Skating Channel (link below).
U.S.: 3 men, 2 ladies, 2 pairs teams, 3 ice dance teams
Japan: 2 men, 3 ladies
Canada: 2 men, 2 pairs teams, 2 ice dance teams