The second event of the Grand Prix Series, 2020 Cup of China, will take place at the Huaxi Culture and Sports Center in Chongqing, Nov. 6-8. A recent press release from the Chinese Skating Association indicates spectators will be permitted to attend the competition.
Boyang Jin and Han Yan headline a slimmed down men′s event with two skaters still to be named to the roster. No matter who else is named, Jin and Yan are shoe-ins for gold and silver.
In ladies, only one skater has been confirmed. With no South Korean ladies yet assigned to any competition, the open spots beg the question: Is China going to permit South Koreans into the country and are those spots being held for that purpose? No doubt, the Chinese Skating Association is getting slightly concerned about its lack of competitive ladies given that the 2022 Olympic Winter Games are just 17 months away.
Reigning World pairs champions, Wenjing Sui and Cong Han headline the field. However, Han underwent surgery for a groin injury in June and, according to a recent post by his coach Hongbo Zhao, he is ″recovering well; his ability is about 20-30% now and he needs to slowly regain his strength.″
That could open the door for Cheng Peng and Yang Jin to capture their first Grand Prix title on home soil. China seems to be in a building stage with its pairs program. Xiaoyu Yu, who was formerly paired with Hao Zhang, reportedly has a new partner, Lei Wang. (His previous partner, Xuehan Wang, retired due to injury). Hao has been dealing with injuries for the past two years and it is reported that he has not trained in a long time.
Shiyue Wang and Xinyu Liu who train at the International Academy in Montreal will definitely improve on their fourth place finish in 2019 and are sure bets for gold this year. Hong Chen and Zhuoming Sun, who also train full time in Montreal, finished eighth last season. They will capture silver without any challenge this year.
NBC: Sun. Nov. 8 – 12:00 – 1:30 p.m.