PyeongChang 2018: what is the “triple axel”, the extraordinary jump achieved by the American skater Mirai Nagasu and that before only two women had made in an Olympics

American skater Mirai Nagasu made history on Monday at the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea, with a spectacular jump.

Before her, only two other Japanese women – Midori Ito in 1992 and Mao Asada in 2010 – had managed to complete the acrobatics, known as triple axel, in an Olympic Games.

Two other Americans – Kimmie Meissner in 2005 and Tonya Harding in 1991 – had repeated the feat in other national competitions.

But Nagasu, from California, is the first American to complete the triple axel in the Olympics.

Beyond the records, another reason why the achievement was significant for the skater is that in 2014, she had been excluded from the US team for the Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

began to skate at five years of age.

“Four years ago, when they left me out of the team, I wanted to get to another Olympic team, and I knew that it would have to be (with) something really special,” the 24-year-old said.

What is this unique jump with which the daughter of Japanese immigrants shone on the track of the Gangneung stadium?

Great start of routine

Nagasu made the difficult pirouette when starting his routine on the skating rink. He took impulse, gave half a turn on the floor, jumped and completed the triple axel, which is to turn three and a half times in the air, counter-clockwise.

It is one of the most difficult stunts of figure skating, by the extra twist that must be added, as detailed by ESPN.

the first American to do this pirouette in an Olympiad. The young woman landed and continued with her exercise between the excited applause of the audience and her teammates.

Nagasu scored 137.53 points, a result that put her behind the Russian Alina Zagitova.

His participation was the most outstanding of the US skating team, which won the bronze medal.

But the American was more than satisfied by the feat.

“Being the first (American) to make a triple axel in the Olympics is historic, and nobody can take that away from me,” Nagasu said.

 

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