Savchenko and Massot shine on opening day of Trophee de France
European silver medallists Aliona Savchenko and Bruno Massot overcame a stumble to win the Pairs Short Programme at the Trophee de France in Paris on Friday.
The German duo produced a side by side triple Salchow, a big triple twist and picked up a level four for footwork and the death spiral, and despite Savchenko stumbling on the land of the throw triple Axel, the duo set a new personal best of 77.55 points.
In the fourth of six event in the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series, they edged out Russia's Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov to take the win by 1.31 points, with fellow Russians Natalia Zabiiako and Alexander Enbert taking third place.
"It was a little step up from last week [at the Grand Prix in Moscow], but it still wasn't our very best," said Savchenko.
In the Short Dance, French pair Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron took the lead with a new personal best of 78.26 points.
Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume CizeronAFP
The reigning world champions earned a level four for the Blues pattern, the stationary lift and the twizzles, placing Russia's Elena Ilinykh and Ruslan Zhiganshin in second and Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue of the USA in third.
"We did a very good performance, especially for the beginning of the season," said Papadakis.
"There are still little things to work on, but overall we are really pleased."
Elsewhere, Spain's Javier Fernandez edged the lead in the Men's Short Programme, with Nathan Chen of the USA and Kazakhstan's Denis Tan taking second and third respectively.
Fernandez fell on his opening quad toe, but recovered to set a new season's best of 96.57 points.
And in the women's equivalent, Evgenia Medvedeva of Russia set a new personal best to win ahead of Canadian Gabrielle Daleman and Russia's Maria Sotskova.
World champion Medvedeva achieved 78.52 points in a performance highlighted by a triple Flip-triple toe combination, a triple loop, double Axel and level-four spins and steps.
"I am pleased with today's performance, but this is still not the limit," said the European champion.
"I think I can improve my second score, because I think it's not enough for senior skating. I have to work harder on it."