SKATE CANADA TO HOST 2018 ISU GRAND PRIX FINAL IN VANCOUVER

VANCOUVER, BC: Skate Canada has been awarded the 2018 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final by the International Skating Union (ISU). The event will take place in Vancouver, B.C., at the Doug Mitchell Thunderbird Sports Centre from December 5-9, 2018. This is the fourth time Canada has hosted this event, having previously hosted in 2011 in Quebec City, Que., 2001 in Kitchener, Ont., and in Hamilton, Ont., in 1996.

“Skate Canada is honoured to be hosting the ISU Grand Prix Final for the fourth time. This championship is the pinnacle event of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series and the most important event in the first half of the skating calendar,” said Debra Armstrong, CEO, Skate Canada. “Vancouver is a wonderful city with lots of skating history, and we are confident that they will be gracious hosts and produce an outstanding event.”

The ISU Grand Prix Final is the concluding event of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating circuit. The series hosts six stops: United States (Skate America), Canada (Skate Canada International), Russia (Rostelecom Cup), France (Internationaux de France), China (Cup of China), and Japan (NHK Trophy). Skaters are awarded points based on their placements at their assigned events and the top six in each of the four disciplines advance to the final.

“Vancouver is home to some of the best venues, amenities, resources, and volunteers and the whole city is ready to welcome the world during the ISU Grand Prix Final,” says Mayor Gregor Robertson. “Thanks to our experience hosting events like the 2010 Winter Olympics and Paralympics and the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, we’ll ensure every athlete, coach, and fan has an experience second to none.”

The event will also include the 2018 ISU Junior Grand Prix Final. The world’s top junior skaters also collect points to qualify, through seven events which change location yearly. The top six in men’s, ladies, pair and ice dance, based on the results of the Junior Grand Prix series, advance to the Junior Final.

In total, there will be 48 entries and 72 skaters taking part in the event in both senior and junior.

“We are so pleased to be hosting the ISU Grand Prix Final in Vancouver next December as part of our year of ice events,” said Michelle Collens, Senior Manager, Sport Hosting Vancouver. “In conjunction with the Canadian Tire National Championships in January, this long-term Skate Canada hosting partnership with benefit our community in many ways.”

In 2018, Vancouver will host the Canadian Tire National Skating Championships for the sixth time. The city has also hosted several international figure skating events: the 2009 ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships, 2001 & 1960 ISU World Figure Skating Championships and the 1978 Skate Canada International.

The ISU Grand Prix Final began in 1995 and the first three editions of the competition were titled the Champions Series Final. During the 1998-99 season the name changed to the current title.