The 2020 Grand Prix Series will have a very different look and feel this season. The International Skating Union (ISU) spent months working out the details for the Series, given the fact that many international borders are still closed. Each competition will have its own peculiarities with the majority featuring skaters from each particular nation, while others will also include international athletes.
Given those international border restrictions, many new faces will grace the stages alongside many familiar ones. Yuzuru Hanyu has opted to sit out the Grand Prix season for health reasons, and while he and others will be missed by many, the door has opened for other young stars to shine on the six stages.
The Series opens with Skate America in Las Vegas, Nevada, Oct. 23. While the bright lights of Las Vegas may be temporarily dimmed, that will not be the case inside the Orleans Arena, the venue that will host Skate America. The competition will take place without fans in attendance.
Due to the high numbers of COVID-19 infections in Ontario and a 28-day partial shutdown mandated by the government, Skate Canada International was cancelled on Oct. 14. Internationaux de France was cancelled on Oct. 19.
China will now host the second competition, with Russia and Japan closing out the Series at the end of November. Young You of South Korea has been invited to participate in NHK Trophy. She is the only non-Japanese skater in the ladies line up and the only skater from her nation that will compete on the Grand Prix circuit this season.
The Grand Prix Final — the test event for the 2022 Olympic Winter Games — was scheduled to take place in Beijing, China, Dec. 10-13, but on Sept. 30, the ISU advised it has been postponed to a later date.
|Oct. 23–25||2020 Skate America||Las Vegas, Nevada|
|Nov. 6–8||2020 Cup of China||Chongqing, China|
|Nov. 20–22||2020 Rostelecom Cup||Moscow, Russia|
|Nov. 27–29||2020 NHK Trophy||Osaka, Japan|
A comprehensive list of programs that skaters will compete this season can be found HERE.
Due to the current situation, the usual selection criteria did not apply. The Grand Prix lists were decided using the following ranking order: the top six skaters entered for the 2020 World Championships (listed in season’s best order, in replacement of the usual World Championships results); top seven to 12 skaters as entered for the 2020 World Championships (listed in season’s best order — seven to 10 for pairs and ice dance); “Come-back” skaters/teams; top 24 skaters in the World Standings for 2019-2020; top 24 skaters on the season’s best list for 2019-2020; medalists from the 2020 World Junior Championships and winners of the 2019 Junior Grand Prix Final; returning “split teams” and top 25 to 75 in the season’s best list for 2019-2020.