SOCHI, Russia - Tatiana Volosozhar and Maxim Trankov took the lead Tuesday in the Olympic pairs competition after the short program, putting them in position to win another figure skating gold medal for host Russia.

The reigning world champions scored 84.17 points to lead Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy of Germany by 4.53. Fellow Russians Ksenia Stolbova and Fedor Klimov are third.

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Volosozhar and Trankov skated a sharp short program Thursday to help the Russians win gold in the first Olympic team event. They were even better Tuesday as they sought to restore the country's dominance in pairs.

Russia or the Soviet Union had won gold in pairs in 12 straight Olympics before the streak ended four years ago. Even worse, the Russians failed to take home any pairs medal in 2010.