Russians Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov won gold medals at the Ice Dance Championships on Saturday at the European Figure Skating Championships in Tallinn, Estonia, in the absence of Frenchmen Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron, about 20 days before the Games. Beijing Winter Olympics (February 4-20), AFP reports.The reigning European champions Victoria Sinitsina and Nikita Katsalapov won with a total of 217.96 points, followed on the podium by their compatriots Aleksandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin (213.20) and the Italians Charlene Guignard and Marco Fabbri ( 207.97), writes Agerpres.

Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron, 2018 Olympic runners-up in gold at the 2022 Winter Olympics in Beijing, have decided not to compete in the continental competition as a precaution.

Two years ago, in Graz (Austria), Sinitsina and Katsalapov deprived the French of European gold, already five times European champions and four times world champions. Then, the Russian pair was crowned world champion in the absence of the French last March.

In 2021, mainland competition was canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

uD83DuDCFA Elegance! Victoria Sinitsina & Nikita Katsalapov dance their way to the top of the podium at the ISU European Figure Skating Championships 2022 in Tallinn, uD83CuDDEAuD83CuDDEA #FigureSkating #EuroFigure pic.twitter.com/jWIm288RZf

– ISU Figure Skating (@ISU_Figure) January 15, 2022

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