4th Jacqueline du Bief was born on this day in Paris in 1930, considered as a weak skater in the figures but an innovative free skater, she skated for the De Glace Club Paris.  Her greatest figure skating moment came in 1952, shortly after she had won bronze at the Oslo Olympics, when she won the World Championship in Paris. Although du Bief landed the first-ever double Lutz by a woman, it was a controversial victory as she fell twice during her free skate. She was given a 6.0 by one judge despite this, and even the French fans pelted the ice with various items to protest the decision. Du Bief later wrote in her book Thin Ice, that American Sonya Klopfer actually deserved the title. Du Bief won six consecutive French championships (1947-52), and her World title came after she had finished second in the event in 1951. At the European Championships, she won bronze in 1950 and silver in 1951-52. Du Bief also skated pairs for a time, winning the French title in 1950-51 with Tony Font. After the 1952 Winter Olympics she turned professional, performing in ice shows in the United States for 12 years, with the Ice Capades, Holiday on Ice, and Hollywood Ice Revue. Canadian pairs skater Don Fraser was born in 1955, with partner and later to be his wife, Candace Jones, he won gold at the Canadian Figure Skating Championships in 1975 and 1976 and competed in the 1976 Winter Olympics. The couple retired to Vermont where Don had a work-working and furniture business and Candace practiced family medicine at the University of Vermont. The couple have two sons, Jesse and Matthew. In 2016, Mat won the Cross-Fit World Games, a competition for fitness which proclaims him the world’s fittest man. Born today in 1961, another Canadian skater, Lyndon Johnston was affiliated to the Hamiota FSC in Hamiota. In his early career he partnered Melinda Kunhegyi, and they won three international medals – silver at the Nebelhorn Trophy, gold at the Prague Skate, and gold at the Grand Prix International St. Gervais. In 1982, the pair took silver at the St. Ivel International.During the 1983–1984 season, the pair won bronze at the 1983 Skate America and silver at the 1984 Canadian Championships. They came 12th at the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo. In their final season together, Kunhegyi/Johnston won silver at the Ennia Challenge Cup and Canadian Championships and came fifth at the 1985 World Championships in Tokyo. In the 1985–1986 season, Johnston began competing with Denise Benning. The pair won several international medals, including bronze at the 1985 NHK Trophy, bronze at the 1985 Skate Canada International, silver at the 1986 Skate America, and gold at the 1987 St. Ivel International. At the Canadian Championships, they became three-time pair skating medallists (silver in 1986 and 1987, bronze in 1988) and three-time four skating champions (1986–1988). Benning/Johnston finished fifth at three consecutive World Championships and sixth at the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary. Later in 1988, Johnston teamed up with Cindy Landry from Quebec. The pair won silver at the 1989 World Championships and gold at the 1990 Canadian Championships. After placing 9th at the 1990 World Championships, they both turned professional. Johnston was inducted into the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame and Museum in 1993. Jozef Sabovčík, nicknamed ‘Jumping Joe’ was born in 1963, a Slovak figure skater he competed representing Czechoslovakia. His mother, Alexandra, was a ballerina of Czech descent, and his father, Jozef, a dancer and choreographer of Slovak descent. He is Catholic, speaks five languages (Slovak, Czech, English, Russian and German) and has dual Slovak and Canadian citizenship. In 2005, he stated that he did not agree with the dissolution of Czechoslovakia and still felt Czechoslovak. He is the 1984 Olympic bronze medallist, a two-time European champion (1985 and 1986), and a six-time Czechoslovak national champion. At the 1986 European Championships, he became the first skater to land a quad toe loop. It was approved at the time as the first quad in competition but a few weeks later ruled invalid because of a touchdown with his free foot. At the 1988 World Championships, Kurt Browning of Canada landed the first quad toe loop which has remained ratified. During his career he competed at eight World Championships, but never medalled, his best place being fourth in 1984 and 1985. Sabovčík also won Skate America and Skate Canada in 1986 and was a six-time Czechoslovakian champion (1979-84). A knee injury sustained during the 1986 World Championships put an end to his amateur career, but he later returned to skate professionally and performed until 2013. British figure skater Charlene G. von Saher was born in Wimbledon in 1974. The daughter of West German Skater von Saher she spent most of her life in Greenwich, Connecticut and trained alongside Nancy Kerrigan under coaches Evy Scotvold and Mary Scotvold. She won gold at the 1993 British Championships and then finished 12th at the 1993 World Championships. Despite withdrawing from the 1994 national championships with a severe case of the flu, she was selected to represent Great Britain at the 1994 Winter Olympics where she finished 15th. She is the granddaughter of Dési von Halban and Jacques Goudstikker, and the great-granddaughter of Selma Kurz. Since the 1990s she has assisted her mother in fighting for restitution of Nazi-looted art that belonged to her grandfather. She spoke at the opening of the exhibition Reclaimed – Paintings from the Collection of Jacques Goudstikker at the Contemporary Jewish Museum. Born in Minsk, Belarus in 1983, Roman Zaretski, with his sister, Alexandra Zaretsky, he is the 2009 Skate America bronze medallist, 2009 Golden Spin of Zagreb champion, a three-time Nebelhorn Trophy medallist, and a three-time Israeli national champion. The couple finished as high as 6th at the World Championships and competed twice at the Winter Olympics, finishing 10th in 2010. Roman Zaretsky began skating at the age of four as a single skater and after medals at various age groups, he decided he wanted to switch to ice dancing, his sister was the only available girl at the rink, so their parents put them together. He was 11 and she was 7. The Zaretskys were originally coached by their parents but later by Irina Romanova and Igor Yaroshenko and then Evgeni Platov before returning to their parents when Roman’s army service kept them in Israel. In the summer of 2006, the Zaretskys briefly trained in Moscow because Platov was taking part in a skating reality show, eventually they trained at the Ice House in Hackensack, New Jersey under Galit Chait. They were the first Israelis to medal at the Junior Winter Olympics as well as the first Israeli figure skaters to medal internationally at junior level. In the 2005–2006 season, they debuted at the senior level, and were required to finish at least 15th at the 2006 European Championships in order to qualify for the Olympics as Israel’s second team, which they accomplished and were placed 22nd at the Games. After the 2005–2006 season they became the top Israeli ice dancing team. They won bronze at the 2006 Nebelhorn Trophy, a senior “B” international, and finished just off the podium at the 2006 Cup of China. They finished 11th at the 2007 Europeans and 14th at the 2007 World Championships. Based on their top-ten finish at the Europeans, the Zaretskys met the national criterion for the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. There, in February 2010 they performed to music from Schindler’s List in the free dance, having chosen the music in part to honour 27 family members who died in Minsk during the Holocaust. They finished tenth, setting new personal best scores in the free dance and overall. They went on to finish 6th at the 2010 Worlds, again setting personal bests in the free dance and overall. In June 2010, the Zaretskys announced their retirement from competitive skating, citing a lack of support from their federation as the reason.


5thAleksandr Gavrilov, Russian pair-skater, was born in Novosibirsk on this day in 1943. He competed internationally for the Soviet Union with his partner Tatiana Zhuk. The pair were World bronze medalists and1963 & 1964 European bronze medallists as well as being placed 5th at the1964 Winter Olympics. He also competed one season with Tamara Moskvina, winning the 1965 Soviet Championships. German pairs skater Kerstin Stolfig was born today in 1960 in East Berlin, who represented East Germany on the international stage. She and her skating partner, Veit Kempe, came sixth at the 1976 Winter Olympics and became two-time East German national silver medallists, in 1976-77 and 1978-79 seasons. Other notable placings on the world stage were; seventh at the 1974-75 and 1975-76 seasons and fifth in the European Championships of 1978-79. Earlier in 1974 they were silver medallists at the Prize of Moscow News competition. After retiring from competition, Stolfig married bobsledder and fellow OlympianHans-Jürgen Gerhardt. Kaetlyn Osmond, born in 1995, is a Canadian figure skater. She is the 2017 World silver medallist, the two-time Skate Canada International champion (2012, 2017), a two-time Nebelhorn Trophy champion, and a three-time Canadian national champion (2013, 2014, 2017). Osmond began skating at age three, following her elder sister Natasha. Due to a lack of ice during the summer in Marystown, they often travelled to Montreal to train. Since the age of ten, Osmond trained at the Ice Palace Figure Skating Club in Edmonton, coached by Ravi Walia with choreography by Lance Vipond. Osmond began the 2015–16 season with gold at the 2015 CS Nebelhorn Trophy, on the Grand Prix series she placed 11th at the 2015 Skate Canada International and 6th at the 2015 NHK Trophy. Although first after the short programme at the 2016 Canadian Championships, she placed third overall after finishing 4.12 points behind Alaine Chartrand and 0.12 behind Gabrielle Daleman. At the start of October 2016, Osmond won the 2016 CS Finlandia Trophy, ahead of Mao Asada and Anna Pogorilaya. Later that month, she received the silver medal, behind Evgenia Medvedeva, at the 2016 Skate Canada International. In November, she took silver behind Elena Radionova at the 2016 Cup of China, after placing first in the short and third in the free. Her results qualified her for the Grand Prix Final in Marseille, making her the first Canadian lady to qualify to the Grand Prix Final since Joannie Rochette did so in the 2009-2010 season. In March 2017, She was awarded the silver medal at the World Championships in Helsinki, having ranked second in both segments. It was the highest result at the event by a Canadian ladies’ singles skater since 2009, when Rochette also won silver. This is the first time Osmond participated in all the major competitions of the season: the Grand Prix series up to the final, the Canadian National, the Four Continent Championships, and the World Championships. She did not participate in the World Team Trophy at the end of the season.



6th Lloyd Valdemar Baxter, better known as Skippy Baxter, American figure skater, was born in Saskatchewan, Canada on this day in 1919. His family moved to Oakland, California when he was a very small child, Skippy started his skating career as a speed skater. Often winning awards as a youth Speed skater in Oakland. Then later, he won two medals at the 1940 United States Figure Skating Championships: a bronze in men’s singles and a silver in pair skating with Hedy Stenuf. Baxter went on to skate professionally with the Ice Capades, working with Sonja Henie in her shows. Skippy and his brother Meryl Baxter owned an ice rink in Santa Rosa, California, where the famous cartoonist Charles Schulz would take his family for skating lessons. It was there that Charles and Skippy Baxter formed a close friendship that lasted until the death of Charles Schulz. Baxter choreographed a segment for the 1969 animated film A Boy Named Charlie Brown, in which Snoopy skates. He later coached figure skating in Northern California at the Redwood Empire Ice Arena in Santa Rosa, California. Charles Schulz built the rink while Skippy and his brother Meryl Baxter helped run and operate the rink. Skippy was inducted into the United States Figure Skating Hall of Fame in 2003 and died at the age of 93 on 18th December 2012.  The first Spanish figure skater to take part in an Olympic Games, Gloria Mas Gil, was born today in 1960. She won five consecutive championships in Spain (1975-79) and participated in the European and World Championships (1977-80) and in international competitions such as Zlatna Pirueta Zagreva (1977, 1978) and the Critema Nacional de Francia (1974, 1975). At the 1980 Winter Olympic Games in Lake Placid she was placed 21st overall. During five years (1973-78), she trained at the Centre for Research and Expertise of Performance Sportive, the high performance sports centre of Font Romeu (France). Gil trained Marta Andrade, who was eight-time Spanish national champion and competed in two Winter Olympics, placing 20th in 1994 and 22nd in 1998. She competed in eleven World Championships, achieving her highest placement, 19th, in 2002 in Nagano, Japan. Born on this day in 1982 in Budapest, Hungarian ice dancer Attila Elek. He was paired with Nóra Hoffmann by coaches when he was nine years old. They twice won the silver medal at Junior Worlds, in 2003 and 2004. Hoffmann / Elek were silver medallists at the 2002–2003 Junior Grand Prix Final and won the title in 2003–2004. On the senior Grand Prix series, their best placing was 5th at 2006 Cup of Russia. Their best finish at senior Worlds was 15th in 2005. They competed at the 2006 Olympics, finishing 17th. During the warm-up at 2006 Worlds, another couple was performing a lift nearby and the woman’s skates accidentally cut Hoffmann’s back and elbow. Despite the pain, Hoffmann skated with Elek a few minutes later and they finished 18th. At the 2007 European Championships, they were 7th after the original dance but they were forced to withdraw – Elek broke his leg during the morning practice before the free dance. They split up at the end of the season. Elek’s younger brother György Elek, also competed in ice dancing. With Zsuzsanna Nagy, he is a two-time national silver medallist. They competed in the final segment at four ISU Championships and also appeared on the senior Grand Prix series. Latvian Angelīna Kučvaļska, born in 1998, started skating at the age of 3½ and has had the same coach, Jekaterina Platonova, throughput her career to date. In her first junior international season, 2012-13, she was selected to represent Latvia at the 2013 World Junior Championships in Milan, where ranked 22nd in the short program, she qualified for the free skate and finished 20th overall. The following season she competed at two 2013 JGP events, placing 15th in Košice and 19th in Minsk, and won the junior silver medal at the Bavarian Open. She placed 20th in both segments and 19th overall at the 2014 World Junior Championships in Sofia, Bulgaria. 2014-15 saw her make her senior international debut, taking gold at the 2014 Volvo Open Cup, and coming seventh at the CS Warsaw Cup as well as gold at the Tallinn Trophy, Latvian Championships, and MNNT Cup. Kučvaļska was named in Latvia’s team to the 2015 European Championships in Stockholm, and placed 17th in the short program, earning qualification to the next segment. After placing fifth in the free skate, she climbed to seventh overall. Kučvaļska was unable to train in July 2015 due to an ankle injury. She began the 2015–16 season by being placed 10th at the 2015 Ondrej Nepela Trophy before winning silver at the 2015 Denkova-Staviski Cup. Making her Grand Prix debut, she placed 7th in the short program at the 2015 Trophée Éric Bompard in Bordeaux; the event was cancelled due to the November 2015 Paris attacks. At the 2016 Europeans she came fifth in the short programme, fourth in the free skate, and fourth overall, this represented the highest placing by a Latvian skater at the European Championships, matching Konstantin Kostin’s result in 1993. This season (2016-17) she has competed at two Grand Prix events, coming 11th at the 2016 Skate America and 10th at the 2016 Rostelecom Cup. She finished 19th at the 2017 European Championships in Ostrava, Czech Republic, and 22nd at the 2017 World Championships in Helsinki, Finland.




7th – American figure skater, James David “Jim” Grogan, was born today in 1931. He won a bronze medal at the 1952 Oslo Olympics and four silvers at the United States Figure Skating Championships and at the World Figure Skating Championships. During his competitive career, he was coached by Edi Scholdan at the Broadmoor World Arena in Colorado Springs. After turning professional, he performed in Arthur Wirtz’s Hollywood Ice Revue, with Sonja Henie’s European tour, and later in Ice Capades before taking up coaching. He founded a skating school at Squaw Valley and coached at the Ice Castle International Training Center in Lake Arrowhead, California for many years. He was inducted into the United States Figure Skating Hall of Fame in 1991. Grogan was born in Tacoma, Washington. He was married to 1960 Olympic pair champion Barbara Wagner, but they later divorced. He died suddenly of multiple organ failure on 3rd July 2000, in San Bernardino, California, aged 68. Born on this day in 1950 was British ice pairs figure skater Linda Bernard. Together with partner Ray Wilson, they competed at the 1968 Winter Olympics at Grenoble, where they were placed in 18th place overall. They also had the following finishes in international competition; 12th at the 1969 World Championships, 15th in 1967 European Championships, 13th in 1968 and 11th in 1969. Marie Arai, Japanese former figure skater who competed in pairs ansd ladies’ singles was born in 1981. She skated in partnership with Yamato Tamura before teaming up with Shin Amano. Arai and Amano placed 20th at the 1998 Winter Olympics in Nagano. They are the 1998 Japanese national champions. Arai’s best national result as a single skater, tenth, came at the 2001–02 Japan Championships. After retiring from competition, she became a skating coach. Ten years later in 1991, Sonia Lafuente Martínez was born in Spain. She began skating at age four, after her parents took her and her sister to a newly opened rink in Madrid. Carolina Sanz and Ivan Saez were her coaches for much of her career. In the 2003–04 season, she made her international debut as a novice, and finished with bronze at the Merano Cup, an event she would win one year later. She began competing in junior internationals in 2005-06. In the 2006–07 season, Lafuente became the first Spanish skater to win a Junior Grand Prix medal. In 2008, she made her debut at the European Championships. She was 30th at her first Senior Worlds. The next season, she finished 23rd at Europeans and 26th at Worlds, which did not qualify her for the 2010 Winter Olympics. However, she was able to qualify for the Olympics with an 8th-place finish at the 2009 Nebelhorn Trophy, and finished 22nd in Vancouver. The next season, she received her first Grand Prix assignments, and finished 10th and 7th, respectively, at the 2010 Skate Canada International and the 2010 Trophee Eric Bompard. She was 12th at the European Championships but did not qualify for the free skate at Worlds. Lafuente was 9th at the 2011 Nebelhorn Trophy, 7th at the 2011 Trophee Eric Bompard, 5th at the 2011 Golden Spin of Zagreb, and 15th at the 2012 European Championships in Sheffield. The 2013 Nebelhorn Trophy was the last opportunity to qualify for the 2014 Winter Olympics. Lafuente was unable to win one of the six available ladies’ berths, finishing 26th. In October 2013, she decided to move to Toronto to train in Brian Orser’s group and began working with Ghisland Briand and Tracy Wilson as her coaches. After finishing 33rd at the 2016 European Championships, Lafuente decided to leave competition for a year. Japanese figure skater Yuzuru Hanyu, born on this day in 1994, is the 2014 Olympic champion, a two-time World champion (2014, 2017), a four-time Grand Prix Final champion (2013–2016), a three-time Four Continents silver medallist (2011, 2013, 2017), the 2010 World Junior champion, the 2009–10 Junior Grand Prix Final champion, and a four-time Japanese national champion (2012–2015). He has also medalled at three other World Championships, taking bronze in 2012, and silver in 2015 and 2016. Hanyu has broken world records twelve times, and currently holds world records for the highest short programme, free skating, and combined total scores. He is the first man to have broken the 100-point barrier in the men’s short programme, the 200-point barrier in the men’s free skating, and the 300-point barrier in the combined total score, as well as being the first Asian figure skater competing in men’s singles to win the Olympic gold. At the age of nineteen, he was the youngest male skater to win the Olympic title since Dick Button in 1948. At the 2015–2016 Grand Prix Final, he broke the record for the largest victory margin, with 37.48 points. At the 2016 CS Autumn Classic International, Hanyu became the first skater in history to successfully land a quadruple loop in competition. He is the first men’s singles skater from Asia to win multiple World Championships. He also became the first skater to complete three quadruple jumps in the second half of a free skating programme, at the 2017 World Team Trophy.



8th – British figure skater Phyllis Wyatt Johnson (née Squire) was born on this day in 1886. She won the silver medal in pair skating at the 1908 Olympic Games with James H. Johnson, this was the first Olympics to include figure skating events. They won also silver in the first official World Figure Skating Championships behind Anna Hübler and Heinrich Burger of Germany. The Johnsons finished first in 1909, third in 1910, and first again in 1912. James died in 1921. In 1920, she won the bronze at the Olympics with new partner Basil Williams. That year, she also finished fourth in ladies’ singles. She died on 2nd December 1967. Born today in 1906 in Tallin, Estonia was Helene Michelson. With her partner Eduard Hiiop they were placed 18th in the 1936 Winter Olympics in Garmisch-Partenkirchen in the pairs skating event. Hiiop himself participated in the 1928 Winter Olympics and was the Estonian flag bearer. After retiring he worked as a coach and sports administrator in Helskini and later in Tallin. In August 1941 he was arrested by the Soviet authorities and it is generally assumed that he died very soon afterwards. Canadian pairs skater Richard Stephens, born in 1947 in Port Perry, Ontario, competed at the 1968 Grenoble Winter Games with partner Anna Forder, where they were placed 16th overall. The couple won gold at the Canadian Figure Skating Championships the following year. Also born in Canada on this day, but in 1952, Val Nicholas Bezic, who with partner and sister Sandra Bezic, won the Canadian Figure Skating Championships from 1970–1974 and placed ninth at the1972 Winter Olympics. His sister Sandra is four years younger and is also a figure skating choreographer, and television commentator. She was inducted into the Skate Canada Hall of Fame in the professional category in 2010. Bezic choreographed the competitive programmes skated by many Olympic and World champions, including Barbara Underhill and Paul Martini (1984 Worlds), Brian Boitano (1988 Winter Olympics), Kristi Yamaguchi (1992 Winter Olympics), Kurt Browning (1993 Worlds), and Tara Lipinski (1998 Winter Olympics). She has also choreographed programmes for Jill Trenary, Chen Lu, Joannie Rochette, Kim Yuna, Takahiko Kozuka, and many other skaters. She served as a commentator for NBC during the 2002, 2006, 2010, and 2014 Olympic games, the World Figure Skating Championships during the early 1990s, and numerous other skating events broadcast by NBC and CBC over the years. For several years she was the director, co-producer, and choreographer for Stars on Ice, for which she won an Emmy Award in 2003. She has also choreographed for several television figure skating specials including Canvas of Ice, Carmen on Ice, and You Must Remember This. She is credited as Marlon Brando’s skating coach in The Freshman (1990) and appears with him in the skating rink scene. Another Canadian who shares the same birthday is Meagan Duhamel who was born in 1985. With partner Eric Radford, she is a two-time world champion (2015, 2016), an Olympic silver medalist in the team event, two-time Four Continents champion (2013, 2015), 2014–15 Grand Prix Final champion, and six-time Canadian national champion (2012–17). With previous partner Craig Buntin, Duhamel became the 2010 Four Continents bronze medallists and a three-time Canadian national medallist (one silver, two bronze). She was affiliated to the Walden Figure Skating Club in Sudbury.                 


 9th – Wolfgang Danne, was born in 1941 in Hildesheim, a former West German pair skater. With partner Margot Glockshuber, he is the 1968 Winter Olympics bronze medallist. They are also the 1967 World and European silver medallists. The pair were German champions for two consecutive seasons between 1966 and 1968. Danne also skated with Sigrid Riechmann, they were 9th in the World Championships of 1963/4 and third in the German Championships between 1962 and 1964. There were also placed 6th in the Europeans in 1963/4. Polish ice-dancer Andrzej Dostatni was born in1966. With Honorata Górna, he became a three-time Polish national champion and competed at the 1988 Winter Olympics. With Małgorzata Grajcar, he was the 1990 Skate Canada International bronze medallist and a three-time Polish national champion. They finished in the top ten at the 1989 and 1990 European Championships. During his professional career, Dostatni performed for Walt Disney’s World on Ice tour with Grajcar. He later teamed up with Darlin Baker. The two performed in Sun Valley ice shows and competed in the US Open. Dostatni was one of the first ISU technical specialists in ice dancing and still performs this function today. Eva Hélène Linnéa Persson, Swedish figure skater and three-time Nordic champion was born on this day in 1966. She is also a five-time Swedish national champion. Her best result at an ISU Championship was 11th at the 1990 European Championships.Persson was selected to represent Sweden at the 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville, France. She was placed 24th in the short programme and then withdrew from the competition. Former US figure skater Caryn Jami Kadavy was born in 1967 in Pennsylvania, a singles skater who was on the podium four times at the US Championships. Kadavy placed second in 1986 and was third in 1985, and 1987-88. At the World Championships, she was third in 1987, placing eighth in 1986 and seventh in 1988. Kadavy was unfortunate at the 1988 Winter Olympics. Standing in sixth place after the short programme, she was forced to withdraw from the free skate because of illness. She trained with Carlo Fassi at Broadmoor Skating Club and before the 1987/88 season also for a short time with Toller Cranston. After the end of her amateur career, she joined the professionals in 1988 and was regularly seen in the 1990s and the beginning of the following decade in ice revues. She now works as a coach in her hometown of Erie.Latvian Diāna Ņikitina was born today in 2000. She is the 2017 Golden Bear of Zagreb champion and placed tenth at two World Junior Championships. Ņikitina competed internationally on the novice level in the 2012–13 and 2013–14 seasons. She moved up to the junior level in the 2014–15 season. Making her ISU Junior Grand Prix (JGP) debut, she placed 11th in Japan in September 2014 and 5th in Croatia the following month. In March 2015, she competed at the World Junior Championships in Tallinn, Estonia, and qualified for the free skate by placing 13th in the short programme. Her 10th place in the free lifted her to 10th overall. During the 2015–16 JGP series, Ņikitina placed 12th in Latvia and 5th in Poland. She then collected three junior international medals – gold at the Volvo Open Cup, bronze at the Tallinn Trophy, and silver at the MNNT Cup. In February 2016, Ņikitina represented Latvia at the 2016 Winter Youth Olympics in Hamar, Norway; she placed 5th in the individual event and won silver in the team event. In March, she finished 10th at the 2016 World Junior Championships in Debrecen, Hungary.



10th -Czechoslovakian ice dancer Liliana Řeháková, (married name: Střechová) was born on this day in 1958. With Stanislav Drastich, she came fourth at the 1979 European Championships, the 1979 World Championships, and the 1980 Winter Olympics. The couple were also Czechoslovak National Champions between 1976-80. In Ladies’ singles at the Prague Skate event in 1972/3 she was placed ninth. She is the daughter of Dagmar Řeháková, nee Lerchová,who was a figure skater who came 13th at the 1948 Winter Olympics in St. Moritz, eighth at the 1949 World Championships in Paris, and fifth at two European Championships (1949 Milan, 1950 Oslo). Střechová died suddenly on her 50th birthday, 10th December 2008. The 2008–09 Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final, the senior and junior Grand Prix Final competition of the 2008–09 season started today in 2008. It was the culminating competition of the 2008–09 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating, a senior-level international invitational competition, and the 2008–09 ISU Junior Grand Prix, a junior-level international competition. The junior and senior finals were hosted together for the first time. Senior gold medallists were in Singles Patrick Chan from Canada and South Korea’s Kim Yuna, with the German couple Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolowy taking the pairs title. The Ice dance competition was won by France’s Isabelle Delobel and Olivier Schoenfelder. In the Junior section America were victorious in both singles events with Richard Dornbush and Kristine Musademba as well as Madison and Keiffer Hubbell taking the Ice Dancing Gold. France’s Lubov Ilishechkina and Nodari Maisuradze were the pairs champions. The 2015–16 Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final and ISU Junior Grand Prix Final began on this day 2015. Hosted by Barcelona for the second consecutive year, the combined event was the culmination of two international series — the Grand Prix of Figure Skating and the Junior Grand Prix. Medals were awarded in men’s singles, ladies’ singles, pair skating, and ice dancing on the senior and junior levels. For the first time, medals were also awarded in synchronized skating. The senior men’s title was won by Javier Fernandez from Spain, while America’s Gracie Gold, appropriately took gold in the Ladies event. Canadian couple Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford were pairs champions while their fellow team mates Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje took the Ice Dancing title. Junior wise, America and Russia dominated with the Americans taking the Men’s singles and Ice Dance titles with Nathan Chen and Lorriane McNamara/Quinn Carpenter respectively while the Russian couple Amina Atakhanova and Ilia Spiridonov took the Pairs Gold with Polina Tsurskaya being crowned Ladies singles champion