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‘Gladiator’ Yuma Kagiyama skates to victory in Turin


Japan’s Yuma Kagiyama, skating to “Gladiator,” surged from seventh place overnight to win the Turin Grand Prix on Saturday.

Mikhail Kolyada of Russia took second from from fourth spot while Daniel Grassl delighted the home crowd with bronze, his first medal at this level.

Kagiyama, the 2021 world silver medallist, was a lowly seventh after an error-strewn short program but hit back in style on Saturday.

“Of course, I just found out that I finished in first place, so I’m very surprised,” 18-year-old Kagiyama told isu.org.

“Coming into the long program, I didn’t even think about being on the podium or getting a good score, I was just planning to do my best.

After the short program I couldn’t change my mindset and even this morning I was feeling low in practice. I didn’t know what to do about the situation.”

World champion Anna Shcherbakova of Russia claimed victory in the women’s event with a new personal best in the free skate.

Compatriot Maiia Khromykh was second on her debut while overnight leader Loena Hendrickx earned bronze.

Hendrickx, who led the short program on Friday, becomes the first Belgian woman to claim a medal at an ISU Grand Prix event.

Shcherbakova set a personal best of 165.05 points in the free skate for a total of 236.78 points

“My main goal for this competition was to show that my quad is back and I reached that goal,” the 17-year-old said.

“I made some mistakes in the short program and I will work on it. The short program has to be clean every time, but am happy and satisfied with my performance today.”

In ice dance, France’s four-time world champions Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron claimed gold.

World silver medalists Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue of the United States were second ahead of Russia’s Alexandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin.

Papadakis and Cizeron impressed the judges with their elegant performance to Faure’s “Elegie.”

China’s Sui Wenjing and Han Cong skated to the pairs gold ahead of teammates Peng Cheng and Jin Yang with Russia’s Iuliia Artemeva and Mikhail Nazarychev settling for bronze.

Two-time world champions Sui and Han skated to “Bridge Over Troubled Water” and collected 144.48 points for the free program with an overall total of 224.55.

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