"We've done this event every year since we started skating together, so it's eight years running," Evora said. "I can't imagine not coming."
"We've competed more at this rink [IceWorks in Aston, Pa.] than any other," Ladwig added. "The more competitions we have, the more feedback we get before our international events, the better."
The team, fourth at the 2009 AT&T U.S. Figure Skating Championships, debuted a new short program, choreographed by their coach Jim Peterson to music from the Love Actually soundtrack. They won the event with 57.65 points.
"It wasn't our best, but it had some good things," Evora added. "Our hip catch on the [Level 2] triple twist was better, and we had a solid throw triple loop. But, obviously, I popped the [triple] Salchow, and we were off on the side-by-side spins, which we really expect to be in unison."
The team is known for difficult transitions into and out of elements. Four of their moves -- the back outside death spiral, pair combination spin, side-by-side spins and press lift -- gained Level 4.
"That actually may not end up being the lift we use; we're working on spread eagles into a press star lift, with a back-to-back, split jump entrance," Ladwig said. "Hopefully, it will be ready in time for Indy [Challenge, Aug. 1-Aug. 2]."
Peterson, who also coaches U.S. pairs silver medalists Caydee Denney and Jeremy Barrett, would love to have the top two U.S. teams this season.
"Amanda and Mark have to get their side-by-side elements more consistent," Peterson said. "Their pair elements are strong. We've been working on the height and catch on the triple twist and just making everything more explosive. [U.S. Skating's] Pairs Camp was very helpful with that."