by Matteo Morelli
The fourth of the six ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series, the MK John Wilson Trophy 2022, will be hosted by Sheffield, UK, making it the first Grand Prix event to take place in Great Britain. The event replaced Cup of China, cancelled by the host nation because of strict COVID-19 protocols.
The last time that the British Skating Federation welcomed a major international skating event was in 2012, with Sheffield hosted the ISU European Figure Skating Championships. The same competition has been recently awarded to the UK again: they will be welcoming it back in 2026, the year of the Milano-Cortina Olympic Games.
The Medal Hunt: The ice dance competition in Sheffield will see some top teams going into their second grand prix and fighting for the highest spots available.
Italy’s Charlene Guignard and Marco Fabbri will be competing at their 19th Grand Prix event and hope to confirm another top spot after winning their first gold medal at the Grand Prix in Angers, France. Although they are competing in back-to-back competitions, the Italian team will be driven to qualify for the Grand Prix Final that will be hosted in Torino, Italy.
Lilah Fear and Lewis Gibson will be skating on home ice and hope to entertain the audiences with their engaging programmes. The British team trains at the Ice Academy of Montreal and earned a silver medal at the recent Skate Canada, their highest result so far at a Grand Prix event.
Also from the Montreal school are Canada’s Marjorie Lajoie and Zachary Lagha, which will try their best to end with another podium finish, after their bronze and first Grand Prix medal won at Skate Canada.
MK John Wilson Trophy will also see some teams competing at their first Grand Prix, including Czech Republic’s Natalie Taschlerova and Filip Taschler. Team USA’s Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko will open their season in Sheffield.
Event info: Teams have official practices on Thursday, November 10, and Friday, November 11. The rhythm dance kicks off at 1:45pm (GMT) on Saturday, November 12, with the free dance occurring on Sunday, November 13 at 1:25pm (GMT).