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Newmarket figure skating star falls short on international stage

Gabriel Daleman opens contest in second place but stumbles keep her off podium
Newmarket figure skater Gabriel Daleman after a performance at the Skate Canada International on the weekend.

Newmarket’s Gabriel Daleman started strong but had some stumbles that kept her off the podium at the Skate Canada International in Mississauga Oct. 28 to 30.

Daleman was sitting in second place after the short program in the women’s competition on Friday, featuring 12 of the top figure skaters from around the world. But she fell twice in her free skate, causing her to tumble down the rankings to finish 10th overall with a score of 171.61.

It was Daleman’s first international event after some turbulent seasons marred by injury — and it was not the result she hoped for. 

"I feel disappointed. Practices have been great. Warm-up was great. Definitely was nervous going into this," Daleman told The Canadian Press. “But, it's my second competition out. I can't expect perfect. But I did fight for everything. I didn't give up. I could have just as easily let the program go but the crowd was absolutely incredible."

The decorated skater who earned bronze at the world championships in 2017 has faced setbacks from injuries and the pandemic in recent years but bounced back this year with a third-place finish at nationals. That earned her a spot on the national team until at least June 2023. 

After coming in second in the short program at Skate Canada International, she said she was feeling good. 

“It’s really cool,” she said at the time. “I came in here with little goals and I’m feeling very prepared. If I’m not ready now, I don’t know when I ever will be.”

But despite the end result being off the podium, she still expressed positivity on social media as she posted her competition photos.

“This moment is what I live for,” she said to her more than 109,000 Instagram followers after the weekend. 

-With files from The Canadian Press