Weaver, Poje win ice dance silver at Cup of Russia
Moore-Towers, Moscovitch nab pairs bronze
Canada's Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje qualified for the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final in Japan with a second-place finish at the Rostelecom Cup in Moscow on Saturday.
Weaver and Poje, both from Waterloo, Ont., finished first in the ice dancing free skate with 101.64 points for a combined 163.14 points in the Russian event. The pair scored 61.50 points for their performance in the short program on Friday.
Poje says he and Weaver used their disappointing short dance score as motivation heading into Saturday's event.
"After not having the most positive score on the short dance we wanted to make sure we came back and showed that we have a strong free dance ... and I feel like we did that," he said. "We didn't achieve a season's best score, but we achieved a season-best performance for us."
Weaver and Poje missed out on qualifying for the ISU Grand Prix Final last year. Now that they've secured their spot in this year's event, Weaver says that means "everything."
"It's the last time the judges are going to see us before the Olympics," she said. "We want to leave a lasting impression and show that we are every bit eligible for that Olympic podium.
"The best teams in the world will be at that final and that's our shot to measure ourselves up against them and see where we stand two short months before the Games. It will give us a very good judgement as to what we need to work on and what has gotten better since the last time we've been up against these teams."
Moore-Towers, Moscovitch win bronze
Canada's Olympic gold medallists in ice dancing, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of London, Ont., have already qualified for the Grand Prix Final.
Ekaterina Bobrova faltered during her free dance with Dmitri Soloviev, but the Russians held on for the ice dance gold with a total of 168.32 points. Americans Madison Chock and Evan Bates took third place.
Toronto's Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier finished sixth with 133.66 points.
Earlier, Kirsten Moore-Towers of St. Catharines, Ont., and Dylan Moscovitch of Toronto took bronze in the pairs program.
Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy of Germany won gold, followed by Vera Bazarova and Yuri Larionov of Russia.
Moore-Towers fell on her chest coming out of a lasso lift, which she casually characterized as one of "a couple of little weird things" in the routine.
"We forgot to land a couple of things," Moscovitch added with a laugh.
Despite the fall, the Canadians picked up 123.08 points, staying in third place overall (188.73 points) to qualify for the Japan final.
They'll join Meagan Duhamel of Lively, Ont., and Eric Radford of Balmertown, Ont., who have already ensured their spots in the final pairs program.
"For the most part we were strong from the beginning to the end," Moore-Towers said. "Our skating skills are improving every time out. We are excited to have made the final where we will have better performances."
Ottawa's Patrick Chan will compete in the Grand Prix Final in the men's program.