PYEONGCHANG, Korea, Republic Of — Canadian figure skater Patrick Chan stumbled on his triple Axel in the men’s short program Friday at the Winter Olympics, leaving him in sixth place ahead of Saturday’s free skate.
The three-time world champion from Toronto scored 90.01 points, 21.67 behind first-place skater Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan.
Spain’s Javier Fernandez was second with 107.58 and Japan’s Shoma Uno scored 104.17 for third.
Skating to “Dust in the Wind” by Kansas, the 27-year-old Chan opened with a huge quadruple toe loop, but the fall of his Axel cost him huge points.
“Yeah, I do, I do (hate the triple Axel),” said Chan, who’s competing in his final Olympics. “I’ve been blessed with good skating skills but not good triple Axel skills.”
Keegan Messing of Sherwood Park, Alta., was 10th after the short program with 85.11 points.
Chan helped Canada win gold in the team event earlier in the Games, finally reaching the top step of the Olympic podium.
Canadian snowboarder Meryeta O’Dine was forced to withdraw from Friday’s snowboardcross event after suffering a concussion in training earlier this week.
The Prince George, B.C., racer said she was disappointed but the decision was made for her health.
“As an athlete, you always want to push your limits, but it’s important to stop when you have to,” she said in a statement. ”I am proud to have travelled here.”
No Canadians advanced to the snowboardcross big final. Tess Critchlow of Kelowna, B.C., finished ninth.
Dustin Cook of Lac-Sainte-Marie, Que., was the top Canadian in the men’s alpine super-G with a ninth-place time of one minute 25.23 seconds. Matthias Mayer of Austria won the race.
Manuel Osborne-Paradis of Invermere, B.C., was 22nd, Broderick Thompson of Whistler, B.C., was 23rd and Toronto’s Jack Crawford skied off course early and didn’t finish.
Rachel Homan continued to struggle in her Olympic debut, as her women’s curling team from Ottawa fell 9-8 to Denmark in an extra end.
Homan’s team, the reigning world champion, is now 0-3 in Pyeongchang and is the only foursome without a win.
The Canadians had the hammer in the extra end, but Homan wrecked her final stone giving Denmark a steal of one and the win.
A moment of controversy occurred in the fifth end when a Danish player caused a “burned rock” foul when she touched a stone that was in motion.
When burned rocks occur, the opposing team has three choices: They can ignore the foul, rearrange the stones to whatever position they think they would have ended up if the stone hadn’t been touched, or remove the stone from play.
Homan chose to remove the stone and Canada went on to score four points, taking the lead at 6-4. Tweets from curling fans immediately began to flow, with some criticizing the move as unsportsmanlike.
Homan said she was simply following the rules.
“There are options, and we’ve burned rocks in the past and they’ve come off,” she said. “Burning a rock is not something that you can do. So obviously, we’ve done it in the past and they just happened to do that then. So it’s just the rules, I guess.”