Behind the Scenes of Shanghai Trophy


Team Unity (AUS) in the beginning pose of their program. (Credits: Monica McDonald - 2019)

Shanghai Trophy is the first international synchro competition of the season, where 4 Senior teams invited by the ISU will compete their free programs for the first time. It is the only competition in the world that hosts events for Figure, Synchronised and Short Track Speed Skating together, which makes for a truly unique experience. Behind the scenes of Shanghai Trophy with our correspondent and Australian skater, Alex.

The first thing that was immediately apparent when we arrived at the airport on Monday night was the intense, humid heat. Coming from Australia, we are used to warmer training climates but even we were taken aback by the new conditions. We quickly realised that we had over-packed and were soon comfortably sitting in the arena in nothing more than our training tees and shorts. 

Team Unity (AUS) performing Group Lifts in off-ice warm up. (Credits: Monica MacDonald - 2019)

The arena itself was another story altogether. When we walked through the skaters’ entrance for the first time, we were absolutely blown away by the size and scale of the place. The competition is being held in a temporary rink at the Shanghai Oriental Sports Center and since we are sharing the ice with speed skaters too, it was the first time we have skated on a rink walled with crash mats instead of barriers.

Each team was given a 30 minute time slot for training on Tuesday and Wednesday, with a 15 minute session Thursday morning in order to get used to the ice surface and surroundings prior to the competition on Friday evening. There will also be an exhibition skate where synchro teams will perform their short programs for the audience. 

Team Unity (AUS) walking into the competition arena for the first time. (Credits: Alex Fitzsimmons - 2019)

All the competitors and officials are staying at the same hotel, which creates a nice atmosphere of understanding and has allowed us to branch out and meet skaters from other disciplines that we would usually not have the chance to meet. It is also a great chance to watch and support the other ISU disciplines in their competitions and to be some of the first in the world to witness the new programs for the 2019/20 season. 

Evgenia Medvedeva skating her short program to 'Exogenesis' by Muse. (Credits: Alex Fitzsimmons - 2019)

Overall, it has been an absolutely amazing experience, and I would like to thank both the Chinese Figure Skating Association and the ISU, as well as all the other parties involved, for all their work in organising this event. 

                By Alex Fitzsimmons (AUS), Jura Synchro

The synchronized skating event will be held on Friday 4 Oct 2019 from 7 pm local time. Four nations will be represented: China, Italy, Australia, and Finland.

Results - TOP 3

Shanghai Trophy 2019
Shanghai (CHN)
OCT 03, 2019 - OCT 05, 2019

TEAM Score
1Helsinki Rockettes (FIN)143.61
2Ice on Fire (ITA)69.30
3Team Unity (AUS)60.80