Mihara wins Four Continents via strong free skate
Mai Mihara captured the women’s title Saturday at the Four Continents, a test event in PyeongChang, South Korea, for the 2018 Winter Olympics.
The 17-year-old Japanese rallied with a strong free skate after placing fourth in the short program. She had a total of 200.85 points at Gangneung Ice Arena. Skating to music from Cinderella, Mihara landed her jumps cleanly to earn 134.34 points in the free skate.
“I was able to achieve my goals in my first Four Continents,” she said. “I was a little nervous at first.”
Gabrielle Daleman of Canada, first after the short program, stumbled on the landing of a double axel and was second with American Mirai Nagasu, who had a personal best of 132.04 in the free skate, was third with 194.95.
“When these moments happen, it’s so exciting and so gratifying,” Nagasu said. “It just validates my reason for training hard every day, doing programs even when I don’t feel like it.”
Kaetlyn Osmond of Canada was second after the short program but finished fourth after placing sixth in the free program. Choi Dabin of South Korea was fifth, and Karen Chen of the United States was 12th.
Sui Wenjing and Han Cong of China won the pairs gold medal after placing first in the free skate for a combined total of 225.03 points.
Meagan Duhamel and Eric Radford of Canada were second with 212.23 points, followed by compatriots Liubov Ilyushechkina and Dylan Moscovitch with 205.31.
SKIING: Mikaela Shiffrin won a third straight slalom title at the ski world championships in St. Moritz, Switzerland, to retain her unbeaten record at major events.
The American, 21, was imperious in extending her first-run lead to finish a huge 1.64 seconds faster than runner-up Wendy Holdener of Switzerland.
Frida Hansdotter of Sweden was third, trailing by 1.75.
Shiffrin was 0.85 faster than any rival the second time down after beating Holdener by 0.38 in the morning first run.
Shiffrin’s gold medal streak in slalom includes each world cham196.91. pionships she entered, starting in 2013, and the 2014 Olympics.
Her victory gave the United States its first world title at St. Moritz in the 10th of 11 events.
Shiffrin also took silver in giant slalom Thursday.
BOBSLED: Elana Meyers Taylor of the United States edged Olympic champion Kaillie Humphries of Canada for her second world championship gold in women’s bobsled.
Meyers, who won her first in 2015, and brakewoman Kehri Jones edged Humphries and Melissa Lotholz by 0.03 seconds after four runs in Konigssee, Germany.
Jamie Greubel Poser of the United States was third, 0.23 seconds back with brakewoman Aja Evans, for her first world championship medal.