Chen, Medvedeva claim titles in Moscow

Moscow (AFP) –


American teenager Nathan Chen romped to the men's title at the Cup of Russia on Saturday, while Evgenia Medvedeva of Russia won the women's event.

The 18-year-old Chen, who led after the short program, thrilled the crowd in Moscow with a set of quads in his free routine "Mao's Last Dancer" by Christopher Gordon.

"The beginning half of my program I was very happy with," the US nationals winner said. "I hit all the quads and I think I did them relatively well.

"I've got a little tired halfway through the program and started faltering a little bit on the second quad toe ? that was a big mistake. But this is my first Grand Prix win and I'm very happy with that."

Though Chen failed to win the free skating finishing second he managed to keep his overall lead to rack up a total of 293.79 points, three ahead of Japanese golden boy Yuzuru Hanyu.

"The most important thing is for me to rotate each jump, each combination. That made the three points difference," Hanyu said.

"I realized once again how important it is to practice each element and to perform each element with care."

Local favourite Mikhail Kolyada took third on 271.06 points.

Amongst the women Russia's two-time world champion Medvedeva, 17, who won last year's Grand Prix final at Marseille, confirmed her dominant position at the event with an emotional performance of her "Anna Karenina" free program.

Medvedeva received a 231.21-point overall mark to finish first, 15 points ahead of Italy's veteran Carolina Kostner, the five-time European champion.

Wakaba Higuchi of Japan was third on 207.17 points.

In ice dance the American three-time world medalists sister and brother Maia and Alex Shibutani, who had led after the opening day, underlined their supremacy at the ice of Moscow's Megasport arena with a solid presentation of their "Paradise" by Coldplay free dance.

"It's been really exciting for us to debut our two new programs at this competition," Maia Shibutani said.

"Since the end of last season we've been working really hard. Today the free went really well and we're proud of the work that we've put in and the potential that both of our programs have."

The American siblings collected 189.24 points to finish 4.5 points ahead of Sochi Olympics team winners and Russia's six-time national champions Ekaterina Bobrova and Dmitri Soloviev.

Another Russian duo Alexandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin were third, just 0.38 further back.

In pairs the hosts swept the podium.

The European champions and last year's Grand Prix final winners Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov maintained their lead after the short program with a flawless skating of their "Candyman" by Christina Aguilera free routine.

They got 224.25pts to stay top, 20 points ahead of compatriots Ksenia Stolbova and Fedor Klimov, who won team gold at Sochi.

Kristina Astakhova and Alexei Rogonov were third on 199.11 points.