Yevgenia Medvedeva wins Skate America over Gracie Gold
Make way for another Russian figure skating star.
Yevgenia Medvedeva won Skate America in her senior Grand Prix debut in Milwaukee on Saturday. Medvedeva, 15 and the World junior champion, held off American Gracie Gold by 3.21 points.
A U.S. woman hasn’t won Skate America since Ashley Wagner in 2012, matching the longest drought for the host nation in the event’s history.
Gold, who finished fourth at the Sochi Olympics and 2015 World Championships, outscored Medvedeva in the free skate but couldn’t make up all of a 5.53-point deficit from Friday’s short program.
Medvedeva fell in her free skate, but Gold lost points by doubling potential triple jumps in both her short program and free skate.
“You can’t really botch a jump spot in the short program if you’re going to win a Grand Prix,” Gold told Andrea Joyce on NBC.
Japan’s Satoko Miyahara, the World silver medalist, was third. Karen Chen, the U.S. bronze medalist, was fifth.
Medvedeva joins a bevy of Russian stars with eyes on the World Championships in Boston in five months, including Olympic champion Adelina Sotnikova, World champion Elizaveta Tuktamysheva, National champion Yelena Radionova and Yulia Lipnitskaya, the darling of the Sochi Olympic team event who placed seventh at Skate America.
Russia can’t send more than three women to Worlds, though.
The men’s free skate is later Saturday, with leader Max Aaron looking to become the first U.S. man to win Skate America since Evan Lysacek in 2009. NBCSN will have coverage Sunday from 10-11:30 p.m. ET.
The Grand Prix season continues next weekend with Skate Canada, featuring Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu, Tuktamysheva, three-time World champion Patrick Chan and the three-time U.S. champion Wagner.
MORE FIGURE SKATING: Full 2015-16 broadcast schedule