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Anxious Chan chops men's field at Rostelecom

Two-time Grand Prix Final champion wins short; Menshov grabs second; Kozuka lands in third

Patrick Chan found himself in familiar territory again: atop the men's leaderboard.
Patrick Chan found himself in familiar territory again: atop the men's leaderboard. (Getty Images)

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By International Skating Union
(11/09/2012) - Two-time defending world champion Patrick Chan of Canada won the men's short program at the Rostelecom Cup, and Russia's Konstantin Menshov edged out Takahiko Kozuka of Japan for second place.

Chan opened his routine to "Elegy in E-flat minor" by Sergei Rachmaninoff with a quad toe-single toe combination, but rallied back to hit a triple Axel, triple Lutz and a Level 4 flying sit spin. The two-time Grand Prix Final champion scored 85.44 points, a new season's best.

"I always feel shaky after waiting, skating last," Chan said. "I got on the ice, got ready for the quad. I felt kind of off-balance, a combination of being nervous, excited and anxious. When I did the quad, I was so surprised I did it, so I just did a single toe.

"But I'm very happy with the triple Axel. The footwork and spins felt very comfortable."

Menshov's program to the Pina soundtrack included a triple Axel, quadruple toe loop-triple toe loop combination and a triple Lutz. The 2011 Russian champion set a new season's best with 76.73 points.

"I am glad that I did all my jumps, especially the triple Lutz, as in three [previous] competitions this season, I missed it and did a double Lutz," Menshov said. "I am not very pleased with my step sequence, though. I grew tired and I only could think of how hard it will be to skate tomorrow."

Skating to "Exodus Symphony," Kozuka produced a triple Lutz-triple toe loop combination but two-footed and under-rotated his quad toe. He also stumbled on his triple Axel to earn 76.34 points.

"Today, I made many small mistakes; therefore, I got this score," Kozuka said. "I want to fix some things for tomorrow and I hope to skate [a] perfect free program."

Russia's Zhan Bush finished fourth with 74.50 points, and his countryman, Artur Gachinski, sits in fifth with 74.07 points. Michal Březina of Czech Republic rounds out the top six with 73.83 points.

Americans Richard Dornbush and Johnny Weir finished seventh and 10th, respectively. For Weir, it was his first Grand Prix Series appearance in three years.