The fourth competition in the 2009-2010 Grand Prix of Figure Skating series continues tomorrow with the NHK Trophy in Nagano, Japan. The men's field is packed and I hate to see who will be left off the podium. This is the first international event for one of my favs, Jeremy Abbott from the U.S. and he'll be joined by compatriots Adam Rippon and Johnny Weir. But look at the rest of the field, which includes Brian Joubert from France, Takahiko Kozuka and Daisuke Takahashi from Japan and Artem Borodulin from Russia. What an exciting competition for the men! For the ladies, this may be a repeat of the podium winners at the recent Cup of Russia -- Miki Ando from Japan, Ashley Wagner from the U.S. and Alena Leonova from Russia are all competing in Japan. This also would have been the first event for Kimmie Meissner, before she withdrew from both NHK and Cup of Russia due to injuries.
In pairs, it will be another exciting matchup between Qing Pang and Jian Tong from China, and Yuko Kavaguti and Alexander Smirnov from Russia. I'm also looking forward to the debut of the U.S.'s Caydee Denney and Jeremy Barrett. In ice dance, Meryl Davis and Charlie White from the U.S. should repeat their win from Cup of Russia. I'm also looking forward to seeing Sinead and John Kerr from Great Britain, Cathy and Chris Reed from Japan, and Vanessa Crone and Paul Poirier from Canada.
All the competitors for the 2009 NHK Trophy are:
- For the men: Vaughn Chipeur (CAN), Jeremy Ten (CAN), Michal Brezina (CZE), Brian Joubert (FRA), Takahiko Kozuka (JPN), Daisuke Murakami (JPN), Daisuke Takahashi (JPN), Artem Borodulin (RUS), Kristoffer Berntsson (SWE), Jeremy Abbott (USA), Adam Rippon (USA) and Johnny Weir (USA)
- For the ladies: Cynthia Phaneuf (CAN), Yan Liu (CHN), Laura Lepisto (FIN), Annette Dytrt (GER), Miki Ando (JPN), Yukari Nakano (JPN), Nana Takeda (JPN), Alena Leonova (RUS), Oksana Gozeva (RUS), Sarah Meier (SUI), Becky Bereswill (USA) and Ashley Wagner (USA) Note: Kimmie Meissner (USA) withdrew on October 8 due to injuries and was replaced by Oksana Gozeva from Russia.
- For the pairs teams: Mylene Brodeur/John Mattatall (CAN), Paige Lawurence/Rudi Swiegers (CAN), Qing Pang/Jian Tong (CHN), Narumi Takahashi/Mervin Tran (JPN), Yuko Kavaguti/Alexander Smirnov (RUS), Ksenia Krasilnikova/Konstantin Bezmaternikh (RUS), Caydee Denney/Jeremy Barrett (USA) and Rena Inoue/John Baldwin (USA)
- For the ice dance teams: Vanessa Crone/Paul Poirier (CAN), Allie Hann-McCurdy/Michael Coreno (CAN), Xintong Huang/Xun Zheng (CHN), Lucie Mysliveckova/Matej Novak (CZE), Sinead Kerr/John Kerr (GBR), Cathy Reed/Chris Reed (JPN), Ekaterina Bobrova/Dmitri Soloviev (RUS), Anna Zadorozhniuk/Sergei Verbillo (UKR), Meryl Davis/Charlie White (USA) and Jame Summersett/Todd Gilles (USA) Note: Oksana Domnina and Maxim Shabalin from Russia withdrew due to injuries and were replaced by Xintong Huang and Xun Zheng from China.
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 6, 2009
12:30 a.m.: Compulsory dance
1:45 a.m.: Pairs short program
3:10 a.m.: Men's short program
5:05 a.m.: Ladies short program
10:45 p.m.: Original dance
SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 7, 2009
12:15 a.m.: Pairs free skate
1:55 a.m.: Men's free skate
4:50 a.m.: Ladies free skate
11:00 p.m.: Free dance