Japanese figure skaters Marin Honda and Keiji Tanaka were involved in a car accident in the Canadian city of Kelowna on Tuesday and treated for minor injuries, the Japan Skating Federation said.
On Thursday, JSF director Yoshiko Kobayashi said the two skaters entered in the Friday-Sunday Skate Canada were on their way back to the hotel following an unofficial practice session when their taxi rear-ended the car in front and was also struck from behind by another vehicle.
Honda injured her right shin and forehead and was taken by ambulance to hospital where the 18-year-old was medically cleared to compete. The collision left Tanaka with a sore knee but he is now skating without discomfort, Kobayashi said.
Honda, winner of the women's world junior title in 2016, wore a support brace on her right leg as she practiced on Thursday, but she reassured reporters, saying, "I decided to compete and I'm going all the way to the end."
Meanwhile, the 24-year-old Tanaka, who was on the men's national team at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, confirmed there were no serious injuries, saying, "I'm going to try not to think about it too much."
Skate Canada, the second competition in the annual ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating series, starts Friday with the short programs for women, men and pairs, as well as the rhythm dance.
The reigning Grand Prix Final champion features in what should be a hotly-contested ladies field, which also includes Olympic silver medallist Medvedeva and quad-jumping newcomer Alexandra Trusova.
Both Russians put down clean run-throughs of their short programs in practice, with Medvedeva landing her planned program layout of a triple flip, triple toe combination, double Axel and triple Lutz.
Trusova’s dynamic routine to “Peer Gynt” by Edvard Grieg featured a double Axel, triple Lutz-triple loop and triple flip. The two-time World Junior champion picked up 74.40 points.
“I am pleased with my performance today, but I will continue to work on my spins, skating skills and I hope to do the triple Axel soon. I’ve waited a long time to be able to compete at the senior level and I really like it,” the 15-year-old commented.
Bradie Tennell (USA) remains close to the podium in fourth place on 72.92 points. Gabrielle Daleman (CAN) follows in fifth place at 63.94 points. Olympic silver medalist Evgenia Medvedeva (RUS) placed sixth after falling on her triple Lutz and stumbling on the double Axel (62.89 points).
Double Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu skated a masterful performance in the men's short program at Skate Canada to start his ISU figure skating Grand Prix season with a bang.
Masses of fans turned out to see their hero skate in Kelowna, British Colombia, and the Japanese skater did not disappoint, delivering a clean program on Friday evening for a season-high score of 109.60.
The 24-year-old opened with a solid quadruple Salchow followed by an equally impressive triple Axel. He had to hang on to his final jump, a quad toeloop, triple toeloop combination, but his closing step sequence sealed a dominant display.
The score was just a point shy of his world-leading 110.53, skated at Rostelecom Cup last year, and takes Hanyu a step closer to his first Skate Canada title - one of the few accolades he hasn't yet secured during his illustrious career.