For the third event in the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series, 10 teams will head to Angers, France for the Grand Prix de France. Angers also hosted in 2021 and 2022.
France has been part of the Grand Prix annually since the inception of the series in 1995. Over time, the event name has changed. Starting with Trophee de France in 1995, it has also been known as Trophee Lalique, Trophée Eric Bompard and Internationaux de France.
Grand Prix 2023: As with the 2022-23 season, the ISU maintained the ban on figure skaters from Russia due to the country’s war with neighboring Ukraine. Skaters from Belarus are also not allowed to compete due to their country’s support of the ongoing war. In addition, the fifth Grand Prix event of the series will be held in Espoo, Finland.
The Medal Hunt:Unlike the two previous Grand Prix events, the teams in the medal hunt at Trophee de France all unveiled their programs at earlier ISU Challenger Series events.
Italy’s Charlene Guignard & Marco Fabbri opened their season at home with a gold medal win at Lombardia Trophy. The team has been skating together since 2009 and won their first Grand Prix gold medals last season. Their rhythm dance is to “Holding Out For A Hero” by Bonnie Tyler and “Against All Odds” by Phil Collins. Their free dance music selections include “Through the Streets” by Abel Korzeniowski, “Arrival of the Birds” by The Cinematic Orchestra, “A Model of the Universe” by Johann Johansson and “Closing Credits” by David Hirshfelder. Guignard and Fabbri are coached by Barbara Fusar Poli.
Laurence Fournier Beaudry & Nikolaj Sorensen debuted at Finlandia Trophy, finishing in third place after mistakes in their rhythm dance put them in seventh. The Canadians won their first Grand Prix event last season and finished sixth at the Grand Prix Final. Their rhythm dance is to musical selections from Top Gun, and their free dance includes selections from Notre-Dame de Paris. They train at Ice Academy of Montreal in Quebec, Canada.
Evgeniia Lopareva & Geoffrey Brissaud won the bronze medal at Skate America and may collect a second medal in Angers. Lopareva & Brissaud are skating to “Sans Contrefacon” and “Tristana” by Mylene Farmer for their rhythm dance. Their free dance is to selections by Sergei Rachmaninoff. The team also spends time training at the Ice Academy of Montreal, in addition to working with coach Roxane Petetin in France.
Team USA is represented by 2023 U.S. bronze medalists Christina Carreira & Anthony Ponomarenko and Lorraine McNamara & Anton Spiridonov. Olivia Smart & Tim Dieck of Spain were assigned to this event after Kaitlin Hawayek & Jean-Luc Baker withdrew due to injury.
Event info: Teams have official practices on Thursday, November 2. The rhythm dance kicks off at 10:00am (ET) on Friday, November 3, with the free dance occurring on Saturday, November 5 at 10:10am (ET).