Finlandia Trophy attracts world top skaters

Finlandia Trophy 2012

Press release by Finnish Figure Skating Association

The international figure skating competition, Finlandia Trophy Espoo, will be held October 5-7, 2012. This well respected competition will be arranged for the 17th time, and since the Finnish Figure Skating Association and the city of Espoo joined forces, the event has been relocated to Barona Areena in Espoo.

The almost 150 competitors from 15 countries guarantee a high level of competition for each category. In addition to the ladies, men, and ice dance, the audience can enjoy synchronized skating, as teams from Finland and Russia arrive to compete with their brand new short programs.

Ice dancers Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir, Canadian Olympic Champions and World Champions, won the Finlandia Trophy last year and are eager to launch their international season in Finland again. The couple is looking for the judges’ feedback on their new programs before starting their ISU Grand Prix series in October.

Among others, the Canadians will be challenged by the European Championships silver medalists Ekaterina Bobrova/Dmitri Soloviev from Russia. In ice dance, Finland will be represented by two couples, Henna Lindholm/Ossi Kanervo and Olesia Karmi/Max Lindholm.

Finland’s very own Kiira Korpi will start her international season in Espoo as well. She will introduce her new programs to the judges and the Finnsih audience for the first time. After suffering from injuries, Korpi is finally healthy and feeling confident to start competing with her short program “Girl with a flaxen hair” and free program “Once upon a time in America”. Her competition will be tough, as she will compete against Julia Lipnitskaia, the talented young junior World Champion from Russia, and Mirai Nagasu from the United States, who placed fourth in the Olympics two years ago. After Finlandia Trophy, these ladies will also compete together in the Grand Prix series.

One of the Finnish competitors, Beata Papp, will be participating in the Trophy with her new coach Brian Orser from Canada. After living in Vancouver, Papp moved to Toronto to be coached by Orser who is a well known World Champion (1987) and a two time Olympic silver medalist. He coached Korean Yu-Na Kim to the Olympic title in 2010. Juulia Turkkila and Alisa Mikonsaari will be competing in the Finnish team as well.

One of the most anticipated athletes of Finlandia Trophy is without a doubt Johnny Weir. The American, 2008 World Championship bronze medalist is making his comeback to competitive skating after two years. He will face last season’s bronze medalist, Yuzuru Hanyu from Japan and the forever favorite of the audience Javier Fernandez from Spain. Finland will be represented by young men, Matthias Versluis, Victor Zubik, Valtter Virtanen and Julian Lagus.

For the first time in the history of Finlandia Trophy, the Finnish Figure Skating Association wanted to introduce synchronized skating as a part of the tournament. Finnish top teams Rockettes and Marigold IceUnity, multiple World Champions, as well as Team Unique (World Championships silver medalist 2009) will compete against Team Paradise from Russia in a short program competition. High level international team Revolutions from Finland is also participating.

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