Japan’s ladies dominated in Taipei

Press release by ISU

Japan’s Miki Ando skated off with the gold medal and her first Four Continents title Sunday. Mao Asada of Japan claimed the silver medal and Mirai Nagasu earned the bronze, her first medal at an ISU senior level Championships.

Ando turned in a flawless performance of her program to Edvard Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A Minor, reeling off a six triples including a double Axel-triple toeloop combination and two triple Lutzes and three level-four spins. The 2007 World Champion picked up a season best of 134.76 points, which added up to 201.34 points overall. “I was a little tired, so it was not perfect, but I think I did a good job. This is good for Worlds and gives me confidence. Actually, I’ve done only clean free programs this season. The short program was more of a problem”, Ando said.

Asada opened her program to “Liebestraum” by Franz Liszt with a triple Axel followed by five triples, only the triple toe in combination with a double Axel was underrotated. With 132.89 points, the reigning World Champion improved her seasons best by more than 30 points. She remained in second place at 196.30 points. “I was disappointed with the short program yesterday, but today I think I’ve done everything I could do for now. I’m pretty happy. It (the triple Axel) felt so good. This was one of the best triple Axels for this season. I think I got the momentum for Worlds and I have a good feeling for Worlds”, Asada told the press.

Skating to the “Memoirs of a Geisha” soundtrack, Nagasu delivered a strong performance that featured six triples. She also produced difficult spins that were graded a level four. The 17-year-old surpassed her previous seasons best by 20 points with 129.68 points and moved up from fourth to third at 189.46 points overall. “I’m really happy I went out there and gave the best performance I could have. Even in practice, I haven’t been skating that well because I keep missing the double Axel-triple toe or my triple Lutz. But here I was able to do everything I wanted to. I’m glad I was able to pull out a good performance for my last competition (of the season)”, Nagasu commented.

Rachael Flatt (USA) also skated very well but still dropped to fourth with 180.31 points. Alissa Czisny (USA) missed two jumps and remained in fifth place (168.81 points).

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