Team USA’s Mirai Nagasu made history as the first American woman to successfully execute the extremely difficult triple axel technique in an Olympic competition. Across the gauntlet, the Team Figure Skating Event at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics featured immense talent. Asian athletes were especially well represented this year!
Mirai Nagasu’s free skate might have earned her second place to Russia’s Alina Zagitova, but her historic triple axel had her and the world roaring with triumph. It’s worth mentioning that only three women have ever pulled off the triple axel at an Olympic Game, and they are all of Japanese ancestry. Nagasu and her teammate Adam Rippon felt especially proud to earn a place on Olympic ice after narrowly not making the qualifiers for the Sochi Winter Olympics.
Also praised were the Shibutani siblings, Maia and Alex, who managed to score an impressive second place in the pairs free dance portion.
Nathan Chen’s performance did not go as hoped and he scored fourth in the men’s short program, though he earned plenty of crucial points. A “quad master,” he will have another opportunity to prove himself in the singles event.
Overall, the U.S. received the Bronze Medal for Team Skating, and it was a hard fought feat in a notoriously competitive year.
Canadian Patrick Chan, whose parents hail from Hong Kong, seized an impressive lead for his nation in the Men’s Free Skate segment. His technical score of 179.75 was six points higher than his closest competitor. Chan also placed third for the Men’s short program. He finally received his first taste of Olympic gold in helping Team Canada win the overall event.
While Team Japan failed to earn a medal for their team skate in 5th place, Shoma Uno nabbed first place for his short program with a very high 103.35 technical score, almost 15 points higher than the second place competitor.
What an impressive showing from the various nations!