The ice dance couple of 27-year-old Kana Muramoto and 34-year-old Daisuke Takahashi received an exemption from the West Japan Championship, scheduled to start on the last weekend of October, and received a bye into the Japanese National Championship.
According to the Japanese Skating Federation, the exemption from having to participate in the qualifying event is due to the ongoing global pandemic and to avoid more travelling than necessary. Muramoto and Takahashi are currently training in the United States.
Muramoto and Takahashi are one of three couples assigned to the ISU Grand Prix series event in Japan, the NHK Trophy, which will be held at the end of November in Osaka. The Japanese Nationals are scheduled from December 23 to 27 in Nagano.
Muramoto began competing in ice dance in 2014 and, along with Chris Reed, won three Japanese National titles, a bronze medal at the 2018 Four Continents Championship, and placed 15th at he 2018 Winter Olympics. Takahashi will be making his ice dance debut with Muramoto; the skater has a long list of accomplishments in men’s individual skating – bronze medalist at the 2010 Winter Olympics, 2010 World champion, and five-time Japanese champion, among many other titles.