Nathan Chen brings home the gold and glory

Team USA’s Nathan Chen wins the mens single skating free skating at the 2022 winter olympics.

Wang Zhao/AFP/Getty Images

Team USA’s Nathan Chen wins the men’s single skating free skating at the 2022 winter olympics.

Nathan Chen is a figure skating phenomenon that cannot stop blowing all of us away. With the 2022 Beijing Olympics the world was eager to see how he would perform and he did not disappoint. Nathan Chen won the 2022 Olympic gold medal in men’s single skating.
Nathan Chen was born in 1999 in Salt Lake City to Chinese immigrant parents. Chen entered into his first figure skating competition in 2003, and from there began to raise up the ranks in the figure skating world. Soon he began to make a name for himself by doing well and winning in the juvenile and intermediate levels from 2007-2009 and the novice level from 2009-2011. On top of figure skating Chen also trained in ballet with Ballet West Academy in Salt Lake City as well as competed in gymnastics for many years.
Chen made his international Junior Debut in the 2012-2013 skating season. During his years as a junior Chen won many awards such as the Junior Grand Prix Final in Barcelona in 2016, set the record in the U.S. Championships for Junior men, and achieved the highest ever awarded in the JGP, just to name a few.
In the 2016-2017 skating season Chen made his senior international debut. He started off his senior career with a bang with a silver medal at The Grand Prix Final at only 17 years old. The 2017-2018 season brought with it the Pyeongchang Olympics (which will be talked about later). In this season, Chen won his first senior Grand Prix Final. Chen also went on to win his first World championships and received first in both the short program and the free skate.
Since the 2017-2018 season, Chen has dominated the skating world. In the 2018-2019 season Chen won the Grand Prix Final, his third straight U.S. championship, and defended his World championship title. In the 2019-2020 season Chen went on to win his third consecutive Grand Prix Finals. This season he also won his fourth consecutive U.S. men’s title. Unfortunately the World Championships were canceled in 2020 due to Covid-19. In the 2020-2021 season the Grand Prix Final was unfortunately canceled but that didn’t stop other competitions going on. This season Chen won his fifth straight U.S. Championship and his third World Championship. Finally the 2021-2022 season rolled around bringing with it the Beijing Olympics but first Chen had to get through the other competitions the season brought. The Grand Prix Final was once again unfortunately canceled due to Covid-19 (this time due to the omicron variant). At the 2022 U.S. Championships Chen won his sixth consecutive title and became only the second man ever to do so. It was at these U.S. Championships that it was officially set in stone that Chen was on team U.S.A. for the Beijing Olympics.
Going into the Beijing Olympics there was a lot of pressure on Chen. After becoming the Figure Skating legend in the last few years, it was expected of him to bring home the gold medal. This pressure was especially amplified due to how he performed at the last Olympics in Pyeongchang in 2018.
In the Pyeongchang Games, Chen was an up and coming star and it was expected of him to at least medal at the games, but that is not what happened. In the men’s singles event, nerves got the best of Chen and caused him to make major uncharacteristic errors in his short program. Landing in 17th after the free-skate, Chen came back to the free skate with a performance that will not be soon forgotten. Chen made Olympic history with his free skate being the first man to attempt 6 quads and landing 5 cleanly in a program. With this impressive feat Chen won the free skate and with his free skate was able to climb up 12 places, landing him in fifth. Chen may have left the 2018 games without a medal in the men’s singles competition, although he did receive a bronze medal for the team event, but that would not be the case with the 2022 games.
All eyes were on Chen for the Beijing Olympic Games and he did not disappoint. Chen started the games skating the short program for team U.S.A. in the team event. In this short program Chen won this portion of the team competition with a personal best score of 111.71. Team U.S.A. would go on to win the silver medal in the team event, giving Chen his second Olympic medal.
When it came time for the men’s singles competition Chen delivered performances that the world will not forget anytime soon. Starting off the competition with his short program to the music La Boheme by Charles Aznavour, Chen made history. Chen’s short program set a new short program world record with a score of 113.97. Placing Chen at the top of the leaderboard before the free skate, all eyes were on Chen to see if he would deliver and win his first Olympic gold medal.
Being the top qualifier in the short program left Chen to be the final skater to skate his free skate, leaving everyone in anticipation to see if he could deliver. When Chen stepped out on the ice and skated his program to the music of Elton John, there was no question that Chen would be at the top of the podium. Chen’s free skate score was 218.63, which gave Chen the total of 332.60 for his scores combined. Chen beat the silver medalist, Yuma Kagiyama of Japan, by 22.55 points, giving Chen the gold that he has worked so hard for and deserves.
Nathan Chen is truly brilliant to watch, and you can’t take your eyes off him when he skates. Chen winning the Olympic gold medal has truly solidified him as one of the greatest figure skaters of all time. Chen is set to compete at the World Championships later this year. The world cannot wait to see what Chen does next.