American teenager Ilia Malinin has become the first figure skater to land a quadruple axel in competition at the US International Figure Skating Classic in Lake Placid, New York.
The 17-year-old executed the 4-1/2-rotation jump during his free skate to “Euphoria”, also landing a quad Salchow, quad toe loop and a quad Lutz in combination with a triple Salchow en route to winning gold in the men’s event on Wednesday, September 14.
Malinin said he was inspired by double Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu, who unsuccessfully attempted the quadruple axle during his free skate at the Beijing Olympics.
“It felt really good. When I’m practicing it, it’s pretty easy for me to figure out how to get the right timing and everything to have it be a good attempt,” Malinin said.
“To do it in competition is a different story because you have nerves and pressure that can get in the way of that. So I have to treat it like I’m at home and it feels pretty good.
“I had an idea for trying it for a little while now. March or April was when I really started to work on the technique and try to improve it. Hanyu definitely inspired me to try it here.”
Malinin, who finished runner-up at the US Figure Skating Championships in January, is scheduled to make his Grand Prix debut when the top-level series begins with Skate America on October 21.