The 2019 Junior Grand Prix Series will have a very different look than last season. With all but one of last year′s champions moving into the senior ranks this year, the seven-event Series, which runs from August 21 through October 5, will showcase a host of new talent from around the globe. The pairs discipline will be contested at only four stops: the U.S., Russia, Poland and Croatia.
The only returning champion from 2018 is Canada′s Stephen Gogolev, who will not be age eligible for senior competitions until the 2020-2021 season. He will open his campaign at the second event in Lake Placid, New York. Likewise, Petr Gummenik, the runner-up at the 2018 Junior Grand Prix Final is returning to the junior ranks for another season.
The ladies event is wide open this year with four of the top six ladies from last season′s Junior Grand Prix Final having made the leap into the senior ranks.
In pairs, the Junior Grand Prix Final and World Junior champions from last season have also moved up to seniors, but the Russian teams that placed second to fifth at the 2018 Final are returning to the junior circuit. It will likely be another Russian showdown at the Final in December as it is expected that those teams will dominate the discipline this season.
Three of the top six ice dance teams, including Canada′s Marjorie Lajoie and Zachary Lagha, the 2019 World Junior champions, have made a move into the senior ranks, which opens the door for new stars to emerge this season.
The 2019 Junior Grand Prix Series will be broadcast live on the ISU YouTube Channel and available worldwide, other than in nations that hold broadcast rights. Ted Barton will once again host the competitions.
Qualification rules for the Junior Grand Prix:
Skaters must reach the age of 13 before July 1, 2019 but have not turned 19 (applies to singles skaters and pairs and ice dance ladies) or 21 (for male pairs and ice dance competitors). Skaters for each of the seven events are chosen by their respective nations according to their federation′s selection procedures.
The number of entries allotted to each ISU member federation is determined by the results of the 2019 World Junior Championships. The chart below outlines the number of skaters nation′s can field to each of the seven events.