Jumping into the history books

RARE AIR — American Mirai Nagasu (L) executes a triple axel in the women’s free skate of the figure skating team event at the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics on Feb. 12. Nagasu Kyodo News photo

A piece of figure skating history was written in the women’s free skate when Mirai Nagasu became the first American woman to land a triple axel in Olympic competition Feb. 12.

Nagasu, 24, finished with a 137.53 overall score, second-best of the women’s free skate, giving the U.S. nine points in the team competition.

“Four years ago when I was left off the (U.S. Olympic) team, I wanted to make another Olympic team, and I knew I would really have to be something special,” said Nagasu, whose parents emigrated from Japan to the United States, as quoted by Kyodo News.

“So to become the first American (female figure skater) to land a triple axel at the Olympic Games is historical, and no one can take that away from me.”

Nagasu, of Arcadia, Calif., is a two-time Olympian, having previously gone to the 2010 Vancouver

Olympics, where she placed fourth.

The two previous women skaters to perform a triple axel at the Olympics were both from Japan: Midori Ito in 1992 and Mao Asada in both 2010 and 2014.

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