Breathtaking dance for Marie-France

TERRY JONES -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 8:14 AM ET

CALGARY -- She didn't hold her breath. But the crowd did.

"I could feel the crowd hold their breaths on the last lift," said Marie-France Dubreuil.

It was the final few seconds of the original dance here last night, the place in the program where she crashed out of her butterfly lift, badly bruising her right hip and lower back and forcing her to withdraw from the Olympics in Turin.

While she felt it, she refused to let it affect her.

"I said forget it, I'm not missing this."

She didn't. And Dubreuil and partner Patrice Lauzon go to today's free dance final sitting second to Bulgaria's Albena Denkov and Maxiim Staviski.

The two did make changes to the lift to reduce the odds of it happening again.

"The entry is a bit different but it looks similar," said Lauzon. "The new way, I can spin full out."

It's complicated.

"Now I have my legs crossed so it's not just one leg. I can squeeze his hand and if the hand lets go I still have the legs to hold on.

"The other way was only one leg and he couldn't do anything to help or I couldn't help myself if something goes wrong."

The Olympic gold and bronze medal winners aren't here.

The American team of Tanith Belbin and Benjamin Ogosto - silver medal winners in Turin - are sitting fourth going into today's final.


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