After the men and ice dance teams kicked off the 2013 Hilton HHonors Skate America yesterday, the ladies and pairs hit the ice today to start their competition this afternoon. And it was defending Olympic silver medalist Mao Asada who sits atop the standings after the short program, with World champions Tatiana Volosozhar/Maxim Trankov recording yet another world record this season with their short program.
PLAY-BY-PLAY/VIDEOS: Ladies' short
Skating last, Asada is showing no signs of the inconsistency that we have seen from her in the past during early season competitions. She scored a 73.18 thanks to a cleanly-rotated, but two-footed triple axel, and has a four-point advantage over the rest of the field.
In second is U.S. champion Ashley Wagner, who recorded her first clean triple flip-triple toe in international competition and scored a career-best 69.26 for her short program. She is two points ahead of World junior champion Elena Radionova. Radionova landed the most difficult combination in the competition, a triple lutz-triple toe. The other two Americans, Samantha Cesario and Caroline Zhang, are in eighth and tenth, respectively.
PLAY-BY-PLAY/VIDEOS: Pairs' short
In the pairs' event, it was the second world record short program in two competitions for Volosozhar/Trankov, who looked more confident than ever. They hit a clean short program and scored a 83.05, putting them over 11 points above Canada's Kirsten Moore-Towers/Dylan Moscovitch. Moore-Towers/Moscovitch had one slight error, a foot down on the landing of their throw triple loop, but were otherwise clean in their short program.
Former World junior medalists Ksenia Stolbova/Fedor Klimov were conservative with just a double twist instead of a triple, but their strong program put them in third with a 64.80. The three American pairs, led by U.S. champions Marissa Castelli/Simon Shnapir, are in fifth, sixth, and seventh.
The ladies' and pairs' free skates take place tomorrow.
LADIES (after the short program)
1. Mao Asada JPN - 73.18
2. Ashley Wagner USA - 69.26
3. Elena Radionova RUS - 67.01
4. Valentina Marchei ITA - 59.25
5. Viktoria Helgesson SWE - 58.80
6. Elena Gedevanishvili GEO - 56.68
7. Mae Berenice Meite FRA - 55.84
8. Samantha Cesario USA - 53.51
9. Elizaveta Tuktamysheva RUS - 53.20
10. Caroline Zhang USA - 45.76
PAIRS (after the short program)
1. Tatiana Volosozhar/Maxim Trankov RUS - 83.05
2. Kirsten Moore-Towers/Dylan Moscovitch CAN - 71.51
3. Ksenia Stolbova/Fedor Klimov RUS - 64.80
4. Stefania Berton/Ondrej Hotarek ITA - 63.85
5. Marissa Castelli/Simon Shnapir USA - 62.56
6. Caydee Denney/John Coughlin USA - 62.06
7. Felicia Zhang/Nathan Bartholomay USA - 55.83
8. Margaret Purdy/Michael Marinaro CAN - 50.26