December 07, 2012

SOCHI, Russia (AP) -- Mao Asada took the lead after the short program at the Grand Prix Final on Friday, edging ahead of Ashley Wagner by half a point with Akiko Suzuki close behind in third.

Asada opened with an energetic double axel and soon followed with a triple flip-double loop combination to variations on "I Got Rhythm."

Suzuki was the only one of the six skaters to nail a triple-triple. Kiira Korpi of Finland under-rotated the second half of her combination and ended in fourth. Elizaveta Tuktamysheva of Russia doubled her second triple and Christina Gao of the United States fell on the opening jump of hers.

The competition is a test event for the Iceberg Arena, which will host figure skating in the 2014 Olympics.

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