Press Release

Nine U.S. skaters to compete at Trophee Eric Bompard

U.S. team hails from five different states and one foreign country

Emily Hughes will compete against fellow Americans Bebe Liang and Caroline Zhang at the Trophée Eric Bompard in Paris.
Emily Hughes will compete against fellow Americans Bebe Liang and Caroline Zhang at the Trophée Eric Bompard in Paris. (Getty Images)

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(11/12/2008) - Colorado Springs, Colo. - The 2008 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series continues with its fourth event, Trophée Eric Bompard, in Paris, Nov. 13-16. Approximately 59 skaters from 16 countries are competing for points and prize money. Trophée Bompard, taking place at the Palais Omnisport de Paris Bercy, begins Friday with the compulsory dance.

Nine U.S. skaters will compete in four disciplines: ladies, men's, pairs and ice dancing. The U.S. team hails from five different states and one foreign country: California, Colorado, Missouri, New York, Texas and Russia.

The Grand Prix Series, now in its 14th season, consists of six international events in a cumulative point-scoring format. Approximately 300 athletes from 30 countries are expected to participate in the series. Each athlete is eligible to score points in two of the six scheduled events. The top six point-earners in each of the disciplines then qualify for the Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final which will be combined with the Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final this year in Goyang City, Republic of Korea, Dec. 10-14. Athletes will be vying for a total of more than $1.35 million in prize money throughout the series.

At last week's Cup of China, Team USA took home three medals. The U.S. men finished one-two, with Jeremy Abbott winning the gold and Stephen Carriere taking the silver. Ice dancers Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto captured the silver.

LADIES
World Junior silver medalist Caroline Zhang finished fifth at Skate Canada two weeks ago. Last season she won the bronze at Skate America and silver at the Cup of China, and went on to a fourth-place finish at the Grand Prix Final. Bebe Liang, who finished sixth at Skate Canada, is competing in the Grand Prix Series for the fifth time. She has a trio of fourth-place finishes in the series, the most recent coming at the 2006 NHK Trophy. Emily Hughes returns to competition after missing the 2008 U.S. Figure Skating Championships because of an injury. She won the silver at the 2007 U.S. Championships and 2007 Four Continents Figure Skating Championships, and finished fourth at 2007 Skate America and 2007 Skate Canada.

MEN
Ryan Bradley, the 2007 U.S. silver medalist, won the silver at Skate Canada two weeks ago. Two-time U.S. junior silver medalist Brandon Mroz made his Grand Prix Series debut at Skate Canada, where he finished seventh. He won the gold last season at the Junior Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series events in Austria and Germany before taking silver at the Junior Grand Prix Final.

PAIRS
Tiffany Vise and Derek Trent will be competing at Trophée Eric Bompard for the second time. The pair finished fourth at the event in 2007, in the process becoming the first team ever to land a throw quad Salchow at an ISU competition. They placed fifth at Skate Canada.

ICE DANCING
Jennifer Wester and Daniil Barantsev made their Grand Prix Series debut at Skate Canada, placing seventh. They won gold at the 2007 Nebelhorn Trophy and finished fourth at the 2008 Four Continents Championships.

In addition to Trophée Eric Bompard, the Grand Prix Series consists of the remaining events:
Cup of Russia: Moscow, Russia - Nov. 20-23 NHK Trophy: Tokyo, Japan - Nov. 27-30 Grand Prix Final: Goyang City, Republic of Korea - Dec. 10-14

U.S. ENTRIES AT TROPHÉE ERIC BOMPARD
Ladies:
Emily Hughes
Bebe Liang
Caroline Zhang

Men:
Ryan Bradley
Brandon Mroz

Pairs:
Tiffany Vise and Derek Trent

Ice Dancing:
Jennifer Wester and Daniil Barantsev