Without a quad, Brown leads figure skating in France

GRENOBLE, France (AP) — Without attempting a quad jump, Jason Brown built a solid lead at the French round of the Grand Prix figure skating series on Friday.

The American skater was rewarded for his crisp technique and flowing ease in landing four triple jumps at the Internationaux de France.

His rivals, meanwhile, were penalized for failing to cleanly execute more difficult quads.

Alexander Samarin of Russia goes into the free skate on Saturday trailing Brown, who scored 96.41, by nearly six points. He fluffed the landing of his opening quad lutz but quickly recovered and scored 90.86.

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World champion Nathan Chen fell on his second jump, a quad flip, and was third with 86.94.

In ice dance, the French pairing of Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron outclassed the field in the rhythm dance. The three-time world champions and Olympic silver medalists scored 84.13 with their sultry and intense crowd-pleasing short dance to “Tango: Oblivion” and “Primavera Porteno” by Astor Piazzolla.

The Russian pair of Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov was second with 77.91, followed by third-placed Canadians Piper Gilles and Paul Poirier, who scored 74.25.

The sixth and last event of the Grand Prix series offers skaters a final chance to qualify for next month’s final in Vancouver.

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