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May 28, 2017

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Fernandez upstages Chan in short routine

MONTREAL -- Spain's Javier Fernandez topped Canadian star Patrick Chan in the men's short program Friday at Skate Canada, second stop on Figure Skating's Grand Prix circuit at Windsor, Ontario.

Fernandez, coached by Canadians Brian Orser and Tracy Wilson, scored 85.87 points for a program that included a quadruple toe loop.

Chan, seeking a third straight Skate Canada crown, turned a planned quadruple into a triple and touched the ice with his hand on another jump.

The 21-year-old was second going into Saturday's deciding free skate with 82.52 points, with Japan's Nobunari Oda third on 82.14.

"Jumps are jumps," Chan said, adding that all had been fine in the warm-up.

Despite the glitches, Chan shouldn't be counted out. He was third after the short program at Skate Canada last year but rallied in the free skate.

Chan's routine was choreographed by former world champion Jeff Buttle, after Chan parted ways with Lori Nichol prior to this season.

"There's a lot of quiet moments in the music," Chan noted. "I think as you get more mature and more experienced as a skater, that's the challenge — to make something beautiful out of nothing."

Four-time world champions Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy seized a comfortable lead after the pairs short program with a score of 72.26.

Canadians Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford were second with 64.49 and Italy's Stefania Berton and Ondrej Hotarek third on 59.79 going into Saturday's free skate.

Savchenko and Szolkowy delivered a clean program that included their trademark throw triple-flip.

Georgia's Elene Gedevanishvili emerged with a narrow lead after the ladies' free skate, while rising Canadian star Kaetlyn Osmond gave home fans something to cheer.

Gedevanishvili had an under-rotation of the second jump in her triple lutz-triple toe combination, but it was the toughest combination of the competition and her routine earned 60.80 points.

Osmond, making her Grand Prix debut, skated first and when it was all over, her 60.56 points were good enough for second place, with Russian Ksenia Makarova third on 58.56 and Japan's Kanako Murakami still within striking distance of the podium on 56.21.

Canadians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir led the way in ice dancing, topping the short dance with 65.09 points. Italy's Anna Cappellini and Luca Lanotte were second on 65.08 and Russians Ekaterina Riazanova and Ilia Tkachenko were third on 55.80.

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