Now that’s how you bounce back at the Olympics.
Four years after a disappointing showing in PyeongChang, Nathan Chen set a new record during the men’s short program at the 2022 Beijing Olympics on Tuesday. His 113.97 mark was over two points higher than the personal-best score he set on Thursday during the figure skating team event.
Chen’s record-breaking routine featured a quad flip, triple axel and a quad lutz and triple toe loop combo. Those moves earned him a staggering 65.98 technical score before the judges added on a 47.99 presentation score.
“Finally getting the opportunity to skate the program the way that I wanted feels really great, means a lot,” Chen said following the performance.
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With a 113.97 score, Chen has a 5.85-point cushion over Japan’s Yuma Kagiyama, who had the second-best score in the men’s short program, heading into the free skate. Chen earned a record-breaking score in the free skate during his previous Olympics appearance, and he will have a chance to clinch gold with another strong outing on Wednesday.
Aside from Chen and Kagiyama, Japan’s Shoma Uno (105.90) was the only other skater to exceed 100 points in the short program. Further down on the leaderboard are Team USA’s Jason Brown in sixth place with a score of 97.24 and two-time reigning Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu in eighth with a score of 95.15.