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Chan captures men's singles title

December 10, 2011
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QUEBEC CITY—Canada's Patrick Chan won his second consecutive ISU Grand Prix Final title on Saturday.

The 20-year-old from Toronto fell on his triple Lutz and touched two hands down on his quad toe loop, but still earned first-place marks of 173.67 for his performance to music from "Concierto de Aranjuez," and 260.30 overall.

"I was mentally exhausted this whole week, it's been a go go go situation, but it was exciting, and the audience helps in that situation and just the clapping and gearing up and the build to announcing my name was the most amazing part of the day," Chan said.

"It was a special moment and I want to thank everyone."

Japan's Daisuke Takahashi finished second, scoring 172.63 for his free program and 249.12 overall. Javier Fernandez of Spain, who's coached by Canada's Brian Orser, took bronze with 247.55 points overall, earning 166.29 for his free skate.

Chan's victory in Quebec concluded a spectacular year that included wins in the Canadian championships, ISU Four Continents, the world championships -- where he set three world records -- two Grand Prix events and the Final.

Orser, who went undefeated in 1987, said it's a difficult feat that few can accomplish.

"Especially with this event, if you look historically at this event, skaters are never their best at the Final," the two-time Olympic silver medalist said.

Carolina Kostner of Italy won gold in women's singles, and Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy of Germany edged Russians Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov to win the pairs.

The 24-year-old Kostner scored 121.05 points in the women's free program for 187.48 points overall, topping a field that was missing two-time world champion Mao Asada of Japan.

"I think I am still a little bit nervous because I was really nervous going into the competition," Kostner said. "It was the first time for me to defend something that felt so important. I am so happy that I did not have major mistakes but have the feeling I could have done better."

Dressed in an unconventional sparkling silver unitard, Kostner skated an almost-flawless program to Mozart's Concerto No. 23, her only misstep a hand down on her triple flip.

Akiko Suzuki of Japan won the silver, scoring 118.46 points for her free program and 179.76 overall. Russia's Alena Leonova took bronze with 115.96 points for her free skate for a total of 176.42.

Asada pulled out of the final to return to Japan on Thursday after learning that her mother was seriously ill. Her mom, Kyoko Asada, passed away at a hospital before Mao arrived back in Japan.

Savchenko and Szolkowy won gold with 212.26 points, while Volosozhar and Trankov were second with 212.08. Russians Yuko Kavaguti and Alexander Smirnov won bronze with 187.77.

Jason Brown of the U.S. won the junior men's singles, scoring 208.41. China's Yan Han was second with 205.93, while American Joshua Farris took the bronze with 203.98.

Russia swept the junior ice dance event with Victoria Sinitsina and Ruslan Zhiganshin claiming gold (147.53). Anna Yanovskaia and Sergie Mozgov won the silver (136.61), while Alexandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin were third (135.17).

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