Aliona Savchenko and Bruno Massot added World Championship gold in Milan ©Getty Images

Germany's Olympic pairs champions Aliona Savchenko and Bruno Massot shone as they added World Figure Skating Championship gold in Milan.

The duo, the Olympic gold medallists at Pyeongchang 2018 last month, led after the short routine yesterday and starred in the free to win by more than 20 points at the Mediolanum Forum.

Performing to "La Terre Vue du Ciel", they reeled off a huge triple twist, a throw triple flip, a triple Salchow-double toe-double toe combination and a side by side triple toe.

Spectacular lifts and spins were also part of their display as they scored a record 162.86 for the free skate.

That gave them a record 245.84 points overall as they bagged perfect 10s for performance, composition and music interpretation.

Savchenko now boasts six world titles after previously winning five with Robin Szolkowy.

"It was tough, but we were focused and did everything," said Savchenko. 

"We tried to enjoy it even more than at the Olympic Games, but it was different. 

"I was really focused on the elements. 

"At the end, I kissed the ice and thanked the ice."

Silver went to Russia's Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov on 225.53 as they held onto second place from overnight.

France's Vanessa James and Morgan Cipres also kept hold of third to win bronze on 218.36.

Nathan Chen leads the men's event at the halfway stage ©Getty Images
Nathan Chen leads the men's event at the halfway stage ©Getty Images

Elsewhere, the men's competition began with Nathan Chen claiming the lead following the short programme.

The 18-year-old American, a team Olympic bronze medallist at Pyeongchang 2018, performed to "Nemesis" by Benjamin Clementine and landed a quad Lutz-triple toe, a quad flip and a triple Axel in his routine.

He also collected a level four mark for two spins and his step sequence as he scored 101.94 points.

Chen fell during the short programme of his individual routine at the Olympics so could redeem himself in Milan.

"I'm very happy with the way these World Championships started, especially after having two such rough short programmes at Olympics," he said.

"It's been great to have the opportunity to try the short programme again and I hope to redeem myself. 

"Ultimately, I'm proud of what I did here."

Russia's Mikhail Kolyada sits in second spot as the two-time European champion scored 100.08 points.

American Vincent Zhou, last year's world junior champion, lies in bronze medal position on 96.78, a personal best.

Japan's Olympic silver medallist Shoma Uno sits fifth as he battles an ankle problem.

Olympic gold medallist Yuzuru Hanyu, also the defending world champion, is not competing due to injury.

Tomorrow sees the start of the ice dance competition and the conclusion of the women's event, which is currently led by home Italian skater Carolina Kostner.