Chen United States champion for the 6th time in a row

Nathan Chen, three-time world figure skating champion, clinched a sixth consecutive national title at the United States Championship, confirming he will be the clear favorite for Olympic gold in a month’s time in Beijing, even if he doesn’t. is not immune to some errors.

The 22-year-old skater won with a total of 328.01 points, after winning the free skate (212.62 pts), to the sound of an Elton John medley on Sunday in Nashville, Tennessee.

The day before, to the tune of “La Bohème” by Charles Aznavour, he had been particularly impressive by beating his personal best in the free with 115.39 points.

This time it was less brilliant, since he fell twice, after a quadruple jump at the start of the program, and at the end while he was performing frenzied dance steps.

What reminds us that even a champion of his caliber is not immune to road accidents, although he was still above the competition.

This is what happened at the start of the season at Skate America, where he finished 3rd after having been unbeatable in this competition since 2017, before quickly recovering by winning Skate Canada in the process.

“These championships were very pleasant. The crowd was incredible. It was a good moment,” commented the American, who beat the young prospect of 17 years Ilia Malinin on the podium (302.48 pts) and Vincent Zhou, his runner-up in 2017, 2019 and 2021.

“The competition was really tough. I’m happy to be part of this generation,” indirectly paid tribute to Chen, who now has to be formally selected by the appropriate American committee, although there is no room for doubt.

In Beijing (February 4-20), he will be aiming for nothing but gold, four years after placing 5th in PyeongChang.

The United States Championship podium after the free skate:

GENTLEMEN:

1. Nathan Chen 328,01 points

2. Ilia Malinin 302.48

3. Vincent Zhou 290,16

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