FIGURE SKATING Preview: Uno, Miyahara headline NHK Trophy in Hiroshima

The fourth of six ISU Grand Prix events is the famed NHK Trophy, being held this season in Hiroshima (JPN) with competition in all four events:

∙ Shoma Uno (JPN) ~ 2018 Olympic silver medalist; 2017-18 Worlds silver medalist
∙ Deniss Vasiljevs (LAT) ~ 6th at 2018 World Championships
∙ Dmirti Aliev (RUS) ~ 7th at PyeongChang 2018 and in 2018 World Championships
∙ Vincent Zhou (USA) ~ 2017 World Junior Champion; 6th at PyeongChang 2018

∙ Mai Mihara (JPN) ~ 5th at 2017 World Championships
∙ Satoko Miyahara (JPN) ~ 2015 Worlds silver and 2018 Worlds bronze; 4th at PyeongChang ‘18
∙ Alena Leonova (RUS) ~ 2012 World Championships silver medalist; now 28!
∙ Maria Sotskova (RUS) ~ 8th in PyeongChang 2018 and in 2018 World Championships
∙ Elizaveta Tuktamysheva (RUS) ~ 2015 World Champion; won Skate Canada International
∙ Mariah Bell (USA) ~ 12th at 2017 and 2018 World Championships

∙ Kirsten Moore-Towers/Michael Mariano (CAN) ~ 6th at 2018 Worlds; 11th in PyeongChang
∙ Cheng Peng/Yang Jin (CHN) ~ 9th at 2018 Worlds; 17th in PyeongChang ‘18
∙ Natalia Zabiiako/Alexander Enbert (RUS) ~ 4th at 2018 Worlds; 7th at PyeongChang ‘18
∙ Alexa Scimera Knierim/Chris Knierim (USA) ~ 15th at 2018 Worlds and PyeongChang

Ice Dance:
∙ Anastasia Skoptcova/Kirill Aleshin (RUS) ~ 2018 World Junior Champions
∙ Tiffani Zagorski/Jonathan Guerreiro (RUS) ~ 8th at 2018 World Champs; 13th in OWG ‘18
∙ Kaitlin Hawayek/Jean-Luc Baker (USA) ~ 10th at 2018 World Championships

The focus of many of the skaters who have already competed at Skate America, Skate Canada Int’l or Helsinki is to confirm their place in the Grand Prix Final, scheduled for Vancouver (CAN) from 6-9 December. Uno won at Skate Canada Int’l and Miyahara (Skate America) and Tuktamysheva (Skate Canada Int’l) have both been winners already and only one can win in Hiroshima. In Pairs, the only prior winner is Zabiiako and Enbert, while the Ice Dance event is open, without a prior winner from this season.

The prize money is as usual for the Grand Prix events: $18,000-13,000-9,000-3,000-2,000 for the top five.

NBC has a highlights show on Sunday at noon Eastern time. Look for results here.