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Historic night for Australian Figure Skating

Published 30 September 2017 (AEDT)

GANGNEUNG, SOUTH KOREA - FEBRUARY 18: Ekaterina Alexandrovskaya and Harley Windsor of Australia compete in the Pairs Free Skating during ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships - Gangneung -Test Event For PyeongChang 2018 at Gangneung Ice Arena on February 18, 2017 in Gangneung, South Korea. © 2017 Getty Images

FIGURE SKATING: Australia has logged a historic night of Figure Skating with a bronze medal and Olympic qualification in the Pairs event as well as an individual win at the Nebelhorn Trophy in Oberstdorf, Germany. 

Kailani Craine has claimed top spot in the Ladies Short Program, while Harley Windsor and Katia Alexandrovskaya rounded out the podium with a bronze medal in the Pairs event after the routine of their lives. 

With a personal best score of 58.02, Craine landed a triple loop-double toe, triple flip and double Axel in her routine to ”Dream A Little Dream Of Me”.

”Of course, I was nervous, because it’s an Olympic spot, my dream on the line, but I definitely prepared, I couldn’t have done anything else in training to prepare for this moment.,” Craine said. 

"I’ve been really present in my training and I tried to mimick competition in my training”, the Australian Champion said about competing in the Olympic qualifying event.

Leading Sweden’s Matilda Algotsson in second place and Nathalie Weinzierl of Germany, the Ladies will return to the ice for the Free Program skate at 1:30am on Sunday night. 

Craine will look to book her Olympic qualification needing a top six finish to seal her Olympic debut. 

In the Pairs event, Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov of Russia took out the top spot on the podium ahead of Germany’s Aliona Savchenko and Bruno Massot.

Alexandrovskaya and Windsor of Australia stunned the world with a performance of a lifetime and  moved up one spot to take the bronze. The Australians and four more couples earned an Olympic spot each for their country.

Skating to ”The Mask”, the pair executed a perfect a triple twist, side by side triple Salchow and triple toe-double toe-double toe as well a throw triple flip and Salchow. 

The Junior World Champions secured a huge personal best, scoring 125.80 points for the Free Skating and 190.31 points overall, securing a ticket to the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics for Australia. 

”Obviously it is very exciting for us. We skated really, really well and we also qualified (an Olympic spot) for Australia. So that was a huge step for us”, 20-year-old Windsor said.

With pairs from Russia, Germany, Canada and USA having already booked their spot to the Games, the Australians will be joined by new pairs from Austria, Czech Republic, Peoples Democratic Republic of Korea and Israel on the Olympic program.

Kailani Craine will be the final Aussie on the ice tonight, and you can watch her live: http://www.dailymotion.com/skatingvideos

Ashleigh Knight

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