Amateur makes Battle of the Blades debut

I now know the biggest challenge Bryan Berard has to face every time he takes to the ice with Marie-France Dubreuil on Battle of the Blades: it’s impossible to look away from her face.
You’d normally want to look down, make sure you’re not tripping over your toe picks or something. But having skated with her today at the Mastercard Centre in Etobicoke–where Battle of the Blades is taped–I can attest that her face truly is that captivating.
I had the good fortune to skate with Dubreuil at the invitation of the producers as Battle of the Blades heads into its final to shows. The last competitive skate is Sunday at 8 p.m. ET on CBC with the results Monday at the same time.
She and Berard helped this broken down shinny player around the rink. Choreographer and artistic director Michael Seibert also helped, asking several times if I wanted a helmet or knee pads or a chair or anything..
We didn’t try anything too fancy–Dubreuil’s already been dropped on her head once in this series (during the first season. She sat out the second to have a baby). We stuck to baby steps, no triple Lutz’s, although I was my own double Klutz.
Besides, there was some problem with the snow machine and the ice was giving the rink guys fits. Something to do with the soap in the effects machine mixing with the water on the ice turning everything a tad oily. Hope they get it all sorted out by the finales.
Three couples remain in competition: Dubreuil and Berard, the favourites after scoring three perfect “6’s” from the judges in last week’s “Duets” skate, Tanith Belbin and Boyd Devereaux and Tessa Bonhomme and David Pelletier.
Follow this link to the CP story I filed today on my brush with Blades glory. Video clips to follow once I get then damn thing edited.

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