LAUSANNE, Switzerland -- Olympic champion Evan Lysacek will return to competition for the first time since Vancouver at Skate America in October.
That Lysacek, a Naperville native, drew Skate America when the Grand Prix assignments were handed out Monday was no surprise. He'd hoped to make his return there last year, only to be sidelined by a torn abdominal muscle. The injury required surgery and also forced him out of the U.S. Figure Skating Championships.
Though Skate America is Lysacek's only Grand Prix, it will give him a good idea of how he stacks up against the international competition. World silver medalist Denis Ten also was assigned to Skate America, as was Olympic bronze medalist and 2010 world champion Daisuke Takahashi, who last year won the Grand Prix Final. Former world champion Brian Joubert and U.S. champion Max Aaron are in the field for the event, Oct. 18-20 in Detroit.
Aaron also drew the NHK Trophy in Tokyo.
Kim Yu-Na, back on the Grand Prix circuit for the first time since she won gold at the Vancouver Olympics, was assigned to Skate Canada and Trophee Bompard in Paris. Kim won the world title in commanding fashion in March after taking most of the last two years off.
Two-time U.S. champion Ashley Wagner was assigned to Skate America and Trophee Bompard, while Gracie Gold will compete at Skate Canada and NHK Trophy. World silver medalist Carolina Kostner drew the Cup of China and Rostelecom Cup in Moscow, while reigning Grand Prix Final champ Mao Asada will compete at Skate America and NHK.
The Grand Prix circuit begins with Skate America. The other stops are: Skate Canada, Oct. 25-27 in St. John, New Brunswick; Cup of China, Nov. 1-3 in Beijing; NHK Trophy, Nov. 8-10 in Tokyo; Trophee Bompard, Nov. 15-17 in Paris; and Rostelecom Cup, Nov. 22-24 in Moscow. The top six skaters in each discipline will qualify for the Grand Prix Final, which is Dec. 6-8 in Fukuoka, Japan.