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Japan's Yuzuru Hanyu, Mao Asada win Rostelecom Cup in Moscow, qualify for Grand Prix final
MOSCOW (AP) ' Japanese skaters Yuzuru Hanyu and Mao Asada overcame errors in their free skates Saturday to win Rostelecom Cup titles and qualify for next month's ISU Grand Prix final.
The 16-year-old Hanyu, who finished second behind Javier Fernandez in the free skate, totaled 241.66 points to edge the Spaniard by three-hundredths of a point and win his first Grand Prix title.
First-day leader Jeremy Abbott of the U.S. finished fifth in the free skate and third overall with 229.08 points in the last of the season's six Grand Prix competitions.
The top three men qualified for the Grand Prix final in Quebec City on Dec. 8-11.
The pairs was won by world champions Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy of Germany. In ice dance, world champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White of the U.S. scored their fifth straight victory and second this season in Grand Prix.
"Looking at the component scores I think we can really be pleased with the development," White said, referring to their routine to "The Bat" by Johann Strauss. "We are looking to be perfect and we keep aiming for that, but we are very, very happy with how we skated today."
Hanyu fell on an easy circular step sequence during his quad. He said he felt very tired but was "really happy to bring this result to Japan."
Fernandez, fourth after Friday's short program, was the only skater to land two quads Saturday. He also jumped a perfect triple axel-triple toe loop combination to finish first in the free skate with 163.13 points, 4.25 ahead of Hanyu.
"I'm so happy to be the first man from Spain that is going to the final," Fernandez said.
Abbott, who won the Cup of China this month, fell twice during his routine to "Exogenesis: Symphony, Part III" by Muse.
"It started after a very hard fall on a quad, but I did an (triple) axel very well and a triple flip very well," he said. "And I fell again on a second triple axel, so it shifted my brain a little bit and I had some trouble just getting my rhythm back."
Asada, the two-time world champion, led Russia's Alena Leonova by less than half a point after Friday's short program
Asada double-footed a triple axel and reduced her triple combination to a triple Salchow jump. She earned 118.96 points for the free program and totaled 183.25 to beat second-place Leonova by 2.8 points. Leonova also reduced her combination and fell on a double axel. Russian teen Adelina Sotnikova was third, her second top-three finish in a Grand Prix event this season.
Asada is one of the few women able to perform a triple axel. But, skating to Franz Liszt's "Liebestraum," she opened with a double axel before faltering on a lutz.
"I was really disappointed to miss the final twice, but I worked hard and finally have done it," she said.
Leonova will be competing in her second straight final.
"All the jumps in the first part of my routine were perfect, but I made a couple of mistakes in the second half," Leonova said. "When I jumped for my axel I realized that I was flying to one side and could land on my head. So I was ready to fall."
Sotnikova, a 15-year-old world junior champion, who used to train with Asada at Tatyana Tarasova's camp two years ago, finished with 111.96 points. She was also third at the Cup of China and will be the first substitute for the final in Quebec City.
"I'm so happy to compete with her (Asada)," Sontikova said.
In pairs, Savchenko and Szolkowy totaled 208.69 points, 10.85 points ahead of the Russians.
"Despite a small mistake we skated great today," Savchenko said.
Italians Stefania Berton and Ondrej Hotarek had 168.02 points for third, their first top-three finish in a Grand Prix. Ashley Cain and Joshua Reagan of the U.S. were sixth.
In ice dance, Davis and White added to their victory at at Skate America in October. They dominated the short and the free dance for a total of 179.06 points.
Canadians Kaitlyn Weaver and Andrew Poje were second, a distant 17.88 points behind. Russians Ekaterina Bobrova and Dmitri Soloviev came in third with 156.83.