Virtue, Moir trail U.S. rivals
LONDON, Ont.—Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir have major ground to make up in their quest for a second-consecutive world ice dance title after a night that left Moir less than enamoured with the judges.
Instead, Canada’s ice dance darlings tried to focus on the love from the crowd in what likely was their final competitive appearance at home.
The Olympic gold-medallists scored 73.87 points in their short dance yesterday at the world championships, and trail American rivals Meryl Davis and Charlie White by nearly four points heading into tomorrow’s free dance.
“That’s a pretty large gap,” Moir conceded. “It’s big.”
Davis and White scored 77.12 points. Russians Ekaterina Bobrova and Dmitri Soloviev were third with 70.05.
Canadian teammates Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje finished sixth with a season’s best score of 67.54—despite being off the ice for a good chunk of the last three months.
Earlier in the day, Canadian teen Kaetlyn Osmond finished fourth in the women’s short program in her world championship debut.
Canada’s ice dancers had one noticeably wobbly moment in their skate to “The Waltz Goes On” by actor Anthony Hopkins.
Virtue, from London, Ont., and Moir, who grew up 20 minutes north in Ilderton, Ont., were out of synch in their twizzles—side-by-side one-footed turns that travel across the ice.
Still, the 25-year-old Moir wasn’t thrilled with the scores or the couple’s second-place result.
“It’s a judged sport, it’s not like . . . we win the game by the amount of pucks we put in the net,” Moir noted.
“It’s 11 people who are going to decide and it’s out of our hands.
“It’s not like we’re not concerned about placement, we spend our whole lives working for this moment,” he added.
The 23-year-old Virtue and Moir have been like unofficial ambassadors for the world championships competing in the rink they know so well.
It was clear who the crowd favourites were yesterday. About 100 Canadian flags plus dozens of yellow T-shirts—printed in support of the ice dancers by Ilderton fans—dotted the arena.
Osmond, meanwhile, dazzled the crowd with a stunning world championship debut and finds herself within striking distance of the podium—a year after she finished 10th at the world junior championships.
The 17-year-old from Marystown, N.L. scored 64.73 points for her sassy mambo program.
Osmond flew under the skating radar until she won Skate Canada International this season and followed it up with a Canadian title.
She only learned how to land her triple jumps last season.
“It is a little shocking,” Osmond admitted. “It’s just unbelievable to see how much progress I’ve made so fast.”
If Osmond finishes top-10 here, Canada gets two women’s entries at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.