Nathan Chen, Ashley Wagner, Karen Chen and Maia and Alex Shibutani headline Skate America in November, highlighting this fall’s Grand Prix assignments announced Friday.
Gracie Gold is at Cup of China and Internationaux de France, also in November.
U.S. champion Nathan Chen and Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu will both debut at Rostelecom Cup, the first of six Grand Prix events, in late October.
That will mark an early season test for Chen, an 18-year-old who beat Hanyu at the Four Continents Championships at the PyeongChang Olympic venue last February but fell to sixth at worlds won by Hanyu in April.
Chen’s top challengers at Skate America in Lake Placid, N.Y., are world bronze medalist Jin Boyang of China and training partner and 2016 U.S. champion Adam Rippon.
Grand Prix Assignments: Men | Women | Pairs | Ice Dance
Wagner, a three-time U.S. champion coming off her least successful season in six years, and the surprise U.S. champion Karen Chen are both entered in Skate Canada in October and Skate America.
Russian Yevgenia Medvedeva, the two-time reigning world champion, is entered in Rostelecom Cup and NHK Trophy in Japan. She’ll face Olympic bronze medalist Carolina Kostner of Italy in both events, as well as Mariah Bell and Mirai Nagasu, who finished three-four at the U.S. Championships in January.
The two-time U.S. champion Gold, who changed coaches after a disastrous season, will get an up-close look at Russian world junior champion Alina Zagitova at her two events in China and France.
Polina Edmunds, the youngest U.S. competitor across all sports at the Sochi Olympics at age 15, is entered in France as well. Edmunds hasn’t competed since the January 2016 U.S. Championships due to a bone bruise in her right foot.
Sochi Olympic champion Adelina Sotnikova is not entered in any Grand Prix events.
She has not competed since placing sixth at the December 2015 Russian Championships but recently hired four-time Olympic medalist Yevgeny Plushenko as a new coach.
Also absent from the Grand Prix lists are Olympic pairs champions Tatyana Volosozhar and Maksim Trankov after Volosozhar gave birth to their daughter Feb. 16.
The Russian pair hasn’t competed since finishing sixth at the 2016 World Championships, their first time outside the top two in 19 top-level international competitions together.
Sotnikova and Volosozhar and Trankov could still be added to Rostelecom Cup as there are open spots for Russians in each discipline at that event.
Skate America, the biggest annual international event in the U.S., is one month later in this season’s calendar, taking place Thanksgiving weekend.
Here’s the full Grand Prix schedule:
Rostelecom Cup (Moscow) — Oct. 20-22
Skate Canada (Regina) — Oct. 27-29
Cup of China (Beijing) — Nov. 3-5
NHK Trophy (Osaka) — Nov. 10-12
Internationaux de France (Grenoble) — Nov. 17-19
Skate America (Lake Placid) — Nov. 24-26
Grand Prix Final (Nagoya, Japan) — Dec. 7-10
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By Todd Kortemeier | Oct. 13, 2017, 6:14 p.m. (ET)
Olympic medalist Gracie Gold announced Friday that she has chosen to withdraw from the 2017-18 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series, citing a combination of factors.
“It saddens me deeply to sit out this Grand Prix Series, but I know it is for the best,” Gold said in a statement. “I am currently in treatment for depression, anxiety and an eating disorder. I will not have adequate training time to prepare and compete at the level that I want to. I would like to thank U.S. Figure Skating, my fans and my sponsors for their ongoing support. I also want to thank Marina (Zoueva) and Oleg (Epstein) for standing beside me through this journey and most of all my family for their unconditional love.”
Gold announced in September that she was taking time off "to seek some professional help," but did not specify at the time what she was getting help for. In a statement made to USA Today on Sept. 1, Gold indicated that she would return for the grand prix season, with November assignments scheduled in Beijing and Grenoble, France.
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“My passion for skating and training remains strong,” she said in the September statement. “However, after recent struggles on and off the ice, I realize I need to seek some professional help and will be taking some time off while preparing for my Grand Prix assignments. This time will help me become a stronger person, which I believe will be reflected in my skating performances as well.”
Gold won her first U.S. championship in 2014 en route to making her Olympic debut in Sochi, where she finished fourth individually and won team bronze, and for the next two years remained atop U.S. women's figure skating, finishing fourth at the 2016 world championships. Gold struggled last season, finishing sixth at the U.S. championships and missing out on the world championships.
Todd Kortemeier is a sportswriter, editor and children’s book author from Minneapolis. He is a contributor to TeamUSA.org on behalf of Red Line Editorial, Inc.