In a shocking decision, Canadian Olympic silver medalists Kirsten Moore-Towers of St. Catharines, Ontario and Dylan Moscovitch of Toronto, Ontario announced on Wednesday that they will no longer be competing together for Canada in pairs figure skating. Skate Canada Communications Manager Emma Bowie confirmed the decision in a press release.
Even though Moscovitch at 29 years of age is eight years older than Moore-Towers, the pair seemed to be very close in reaching the prime of their careers and would have been strong medal contenders at the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang. The two helped Canada win a silver medal in the team competition at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, and finished fifth in the pairs competition at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi.
Moscovitch and Moore-Towers also finished in fourth place at the last two World Figure Skating Championships in the pairs competition. They just missed getting to the podium at the 2013 World Figure Skating Championships in London, Ontario and the 2014 World Figure Skating Championships in Saitama, Japan.
The news of their separation was surprising because World Champion Aliona Savchenko of Germany has already announced her retirement from competitive pairs figure skating and Moore-Towers and Moscovitch would have been serious international medal contenders in every event they would have decided to compete in during the next Olympic cycle. At 21, Moore Towers said she is considering staying for two more Olympic cycles, while Moscovitch did not indicate the same intention for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games in Pyeongchang.
Where Moscovitch and Moore-Towers were so strong was in their lifts. Moscovitch was able to lift Moore-Towers with complete ease, which helped them score high marks in competition.
Each of them will have a very difficult time in finding new partners who skate at a very high level. The two were destined for greatness and their decision will no doubt leave many Canadian figure skating fans heartbroken. By making the decision the two will not follow in the footsteps of 1960 Olympic Winter Games pairs figure skating champions Barbara Wagner and Robert Paul and 2002 Olympic Winter Games figure skating champions Jamie Sale and David Pelletier as the best Canadian pairs figure skating teams of all time.