I feel sorry for Piper and Paul - seems no matter how they improve or what great different programs they come up with they are destined to remain in the 6-8 place range at worlds! And I can't see that changing this year either - think they will again end up 6th or 7th depending on high they judges want to push the RUS dancers.
They got some momentum at Four Continents (while I would say S/K lost some at Euros) but yeah, unless they beat W/P they are destined for 6th-7th. Though ice is slippery and we never know what could happen. 2017 Worlds reminded me of that.
They were probably hoping W/P would be retiring this year and they would move up to CAN # 1. It seems the world is just not ready to have 2 CAN teams in the run for world medals. When V/M were around W/P were not allowed on the podium. When V/M took a break W/P were allowed. Then when V/M came back W/P were dropped again. And this seems to be the same way with W/P and G/P. I agree anything can happen - who would have expected H/D to drop to 4th at 4CC this year. But I can't see that happening at Worlds.
I have to say though W/P have been struggling to get to a level of consistency which would reward them since GPF2015. They messed up twizzles at 2016 Worlds, changed coaches and had a late start to the season in 2016-17, and most importantly - did not qualify for GPF two seasons in a row. It's hard to make the Worlds podium when you don't qualify for GPF unless you are a team beloved by the judges. Piper & Paul understand this too which is why that botched RD at SCI18 hurt so much - that bronze took them out of GPF. But there is always hope for next season.