Nathan Chen smashes record, Vincent Zhou finishes third at US Figure Skating Championships

  • Nathan Chen, 22, won his sixth consecutive title after placing first in the 2022 U.S. Figure Skating Championships event in Nashville, Tennessee.
  • Vincent Zhou, 21, finished third in the competition with a final total score of 290.16.
  • Zhou earned a spot on Team USA’s men’s figure skating team along with Chen and fourth place winner James Brown.

Figure skater Nathan Chen broke his own men’s short program record and placed first at the 2022 U.S. Figure Skating Championships, while fellow Team USA member Vincent Zhou finished in third place.

The two Chinese American athletes performed their career-best at the finals held in Nashville, Tennessee, over the weekend, CNN reported. Chen, 22, reportedly smashed his 2020 record of 114.13 by finishing with a final score of 115.39 at the event, while Zhou, 21, scored 112.78, ultimately placing third.

Chen, who skated to music from “La Boheme” on Saturday during the men’s short program event, pulled a quad flip and a quad lutz-triple toe loop. Zhou, who performed to Josh Groban’s “Vincent (Starry, Starry Night),” answered back with his own quad lutz-triple toe loop.

That was a pretty incredible competition,” Zhou said, according to The Washington Post. “From my perspective, to skate like I did and score 112 and not being in first place really shows the depth of talent that the U.S. men’s field has.”

While Chen’s performance in the men’s short program impressed judges, his run in the free skate event on Sunday suffered a minor mishap. He reportedly had a slip up during his attempt at four quadruple jumps, the Associated Press.

Silly things happen all the time. Am I to expect that? Probably not,” Chen said. “It was a dumb little moment. I just got wrapped up in that moment and lost my footing. It is what it is. Make sure I don’t do that again.”

Despite the mishap, Chen still managed to win the free skate event with 212.63 points, bringing his total score to 328.01. Ilia Malinin, 17, finished second with a total score of 302.48, while Zhou placed third with 290.16 and Jason Brown placed fourth with 289.78, NBC Sports reported.

Chen’s Sunday win earned him his sixth consecutive title at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships. Chen is now the third figure skater to win the title six times in a row after Roger Turner (1929-34) and Dick Button (1946-52), U.S. Figure Skating Fanzone reported.

Chen and Zhou will be joined by fourth place winner Brown to form Team USA’s men’s figure skating team. They are set to compete at the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing next month.

Featured Image via NBC Sports (left, right)

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