Canada's Gilles, Poirier Win Four Continents Ice Dance Title | CBC Sports

Canada’s Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier captured their first International Skating Union title on Sunday, winning the gold medal in ice dance at the Four Continents Figure Skating Championships in Shanghai.

Teammates Fournier Beaudry, Soerensen finish with silver in ShanghaiThe Canadian Press

· Posted: Feb 04, 2024 7:47 AM EST | Last Updated: 3 hours ago

Canada’s Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier celebrate after winning the ice dance competition at the ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships in Shanghai on Sunday. (Greg Baker/Getty Images)Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier’s dream season continued on Sunday at the ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships in Shanghai.

The Canadians won their first ISU Championships title in the ice dance competition.

The two-time world bronze medallists led the competition from start to finish, making their performance to Wuthering Heights look effortless in their free skate. They obtained level fours on their lifts, twizzles and dance spin to receive 128.87 points for a total of 214.36.

“We are really proud to have won our first championship here,” Poirier told Skate Canada. “We skated like champions this week and now we have the world championships in our home country and we will go home and work hard so we can be even better there.”

Poirier added he and Gilles immersed themselves in their programs, believed in each other and skated strong.

“It was one of those performances that we had to think about moving together,” Gilles added. “We let the program sail and trust it.”

WATCH | Gilles, Poirier skate to Four Continents title:

Canada’s Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier win 1st Four Continents championshipThe Canadian pair scored the top spot in the Four Continents ice dance for their first career ISU gold at the event.

The world championships are in Montreal in March.

Gilles recalled her and Poirier placing 18th in their worlds debut in 2013 on home ice in London, Ont.

“I remember we skated first in the short [program],” said Gilles. “Hearing the Canadian fans roaring and cheering for [us] but also every other country is so special and something you’ll never forget.”

Added Poirier: More than anything, we’re so excited to do another worlds in front of a home crowd, skate for them and get them to believe in what we’re doing.”

Season’s best for Beaudry, SoerensenFellow Canadians Laurence Fournier Beaudry and Nikolaj Soerensen were second for the second year in a row with 207.54 points while Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko of the United States took bronze with 194.14.

Skating a dramatic love story to Notre Dame de Paris, Fournier Beaudry and Soerensen received level four for the lifts and the dance spin as well as for their twizzles to set a season’s best score of 125.52 points in the free dance.

“We really felt free today and it was super fun to just perform,” said Fournier Beaudry. “I think we stepped it up this week and we just will have a lot of motivation back home to build up towards worlds.”

WATCH | Fournier Beaudry, Soerensen take silver in Shanghai:

Canada’s Laurence Fournier Beaudry and Nikolaj Sørensen skate to ice dance silver in ShanghaiThe Canadian pair put up a season-best performance in China to take second place at Four Continents.

Carreira and Ponomarenko impressed with strong lifts and dance spin, but Carreira wobbled on the twizzles, which cost them points and left them in fifth in the free dance with 116.67 points. But the 2022 bronze medallists remained in third place to return to the Four Continents podium after two difficult years.

“The last time we were on the podium at Four Continents it was only two years ago, but a lot has happened since then,” Ponomarenko said.

“Directly after those championships, I had my ankle surgery and I hit some of the lowest lows that I’ve ever had in my life. So being back here and having those two years of growth with Christina and the rest of our coaching team, it’s a big significant moment.”

With files from CBC Sports and The Associated Press

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