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Four-time champ Chen wins short program with ease – Washington, District of Columbia

Washington, District of Columbia 2021-01-17 00:37:49 –

Las Vegas (AP) — Don’t miss Nathan Chen. Like since the last defeat at the Pyeongchang Olympics …

Las Vegas (AP) — Don’t miss Nathan Chen.

Since the last defeat at the Pyeongchang Olympics (yes, almost three years ago), Dynamic Chen has been pretty playful, almost perfect for winning the short program at the US Figure Skating Championships on Saturday.

Chen has set out the most difficult routine that everyone has tried, aiming for the fifth consecutive national title since Dick Button’s seven appearances in 1946-52. He scored 113.92 points and hit a combination of quad Lutz, triple Axel and excellent quad flip triple toe loop.

“I’m excited about today’s short program,” said two world gold medalists. “I made some small bobbles on the landing, and I wanted to skate a little nicely, but overall I’m really happy with the program.

“This year, the season from last year to this year, was just crazy and everything was unexpected. The fact that we are all here, the fact that we are all healthy, do this The fact that you can do it is just incredible. “

Alexa Knierim and her new partner, Brandon Frazier, won the first national pair as a team. Ice dancing went to Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue for the third time.

Chen’s companion, Vincent Zhou of the 2018 Olympian, nailed a combination of quad Lutz and triple toe loop with his arms raised overhead, solo quad salchow and triple Axel, all as smooth as fresh ice. I put pressure on it.

Zhou, who skipped much of last season, benefited from the break. He also changed coaches and finished second in Skate America after Chen in the fall. Repelled ankle and back injuries. And on Saturday, he seemed to be at his peak of calming down, relaxing and building his best career with 107.79 points.

“Such a score didn’t seem impossible in my head. I knew I could do it once I was done,” Zhou said. “Earlier this year, I scored 103 points in a clean program at a small local competition in Colorado. That was long before Skate America. It’s all about developing all the qualities I have. It was the way before pouring: my landing, my spin, my choreography. So if you have plenty of room to grow, it’s definitely a couple of points higher than 103.

“But for a year, the specific points weren’t too difficult. Rather, if you bow down and skate like you really are, you’ll be able to do it when you’re done. I made an effort. It is very possible. “

Jason Brown, a 2014 Olympic athlete and 2015 US champion, finished third with 100.92. Brown doesn’t have a repertoire of jumps like Chen and Zhou, but his artistry on the ice has made him a factor in the American scene for nearly a decade.

“This is a crazy year and I’m excited to be here,” Brown said. “It was great to skate and compete again. It’s been almost a year since I started it. I’m excited about the opportunity and happy with the performance.”

pair

Knierim rarely performs such a powerful performance with her retired husband, Chris. And they won three national titles and the bronze medal of the Olympic team together. Her way of meshing with Frazier, who won the 2017 National Championship with Haven Denny, is especially noteworthy.

“This is very special,” Knierim said. “Of course, every time we win the national championship, it means something different from you. This is special because it wasn’t what we expected when we first teamed up. I don’t have a kind of word. I’m still immersing it.

“It feels great to win with Brandon. To be honest, I felt like Christmas. I feel very lucky. There are two guys who support me. That’s great. “

Ice dance

Havel and Donoue won their third national championship in a fascinating and complex routine to Hallelujah. They overtook defending champions Madison Chock and Evan Bates, who barely beat them in rhythm dance.

It was also very close: 224.56 points point to 222.93.

Female

National champion Bradie Tennell and third-placed Karen Chen have been selected for the World Championship team. The Federation reserves the right to choose skaters from around the world and the Olympics, regardless of their finish at the Nationals. Tenel won his second US title on Friday night. She also finished first in 2018. Tenel is also an Olympic bronze medalist at the Pyeongchang team event.

2017 US Champion Karen Chen was named Amber Glenn. Amber Glenn won his first podium at the Nationals in second place this year. There are only two spots in the United States. The maximum number of countries is 3.

The 2021 World Championships will take place March 22-28 in Stockholm. However, it is uncertain whether they will occur due to the coronavirus pandemic that also forced the cancellation of the 2020 world in Montreal.

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Contributed by AP sports writers Barry Wilner and Bernie Wilson.

Copyright © 2021 AP communication. all rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written, or redistributed.

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