After all those world records last fall, Yuzuru Hanyu is in the same place at Skate Canada as he was a year ago, looking up at rival Patrick Chan on the scoreboard after an uncharacteristically flawed Grand Prix season debut.
The Olympic champion Hanyu was not himself in Mississauga, Ontario, on Friday night, landing his first jump on one knee, nearly putting his hand on the ice on a second and not doing a combination.
Hanyu goes into Saturday’s free skate in fourth place, trailing three-time world champion Chan by a whopping 10.91 points. Full scores are here.
Chan fell on a triple Axel but was otherwise clean, with one quadruple jump, in his first Grand Prix skate since a disappointing fifth-place finish at least season’s world championships.
Earlier, Yevgenia Medvedeva followed up her world title with a personal-best short program in her Grand Prix season debut.
Medvedeva, a 16-year-old Russian, landed all of her jumps cleanly and tallied 76.24 points, bettering her previous high of 74.58 from last season’s Grand Prix Final.
She leads by 1.91 points over Canadian Kaetlyn Osmond. Russian Elizaveta Tuktamysheva, the 2015 World champion, is in third place, 9.45 points behind.
American Mirai Nagasu fell on her opening triple flip and is in ninth place out of 11 skaters. Full results are here.
Medvedeva is the youngest world champion since Tara Lipinski in 1997 and hasn’t lost in nearly one year.
Medvedeva’s short program score Friday was 6.74 points higher than world silver medalist Ashley Wagner‘s total from Skate America last week.
Later in ice dance, 2010 Olympic champions Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir scored 77.23 points, their third-best short dance ever, to lead by 1.02 over world bronze medalists Madison Chock and Evan Bates. Virtue and Moir are competing this season for the first time since taking silver at the Sochi Olympics.
In pairs, two-time world champions Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford of Canada lapped the field by 8.96 points with a personal-best 78.39. Americans Haven Denney and Brandon Frazier were fourth.
The free skates are all Saturday. A full broadcast and streaming schedule is here.
NBC and the NBC Sports app will air Skate Canada coverage Sunday from 5-6 p.m. ET.Follow @nzaccardi