Former West High Student Nathan Chen wins Olympic Gold

Barrett Carpenter

You have probably heard of the young Figure Skating phenomenon Nathan Chen, but did you know that he attended West High? That’s right—the 3-time World Champion and now Olympic Gold Medalist attended our school as an ELP student.

At just 22 years old, Chen has already had an incredibly successful career. The most notable of his accomplishments are his 3 World Championships (2018, 2019, and 2021,) 6 consecutive U.S. National Championships in Senior competition from 2017 to 2022, and 4 others in Junior and Novice competition. Other notable accomplishments include winning the 2017 Four Continents Championship.

Chen also competed in the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea, where team USA won the Bronze Medal. However, Chen did not medal in solo competition after a rough short program in which he fell several times. However, after dominating competition since, Chen looked to Beijing for a shot at redemption.

By winning the 2022 U.S. National Championship, Chen officially qualified for the 2022 Olympic Games in Beijing. As Chen’s first solo performance grew near, all focus was on his road since the poor ending to the 2018 Olympics. Chen changed this narrative by doing the unthinkable: setting a new world record in the Men’s Short Program of 113.97 points, nearly 2 points ahead of the previous record held by 2-time defending Olympic Champion Yuzuru Hanyu from Japan, and over 5 points over Japan’s Yuma Kagiyama. With such a lead, Chen could easily have cruised through the Free Skate program (which is a longer program) and onto the top spot of the podium for America, but again crushed it, scoring a whopping 218.63 points and sealing his first gold medal. In total, Chen scored 332.60 points, beating Silver medalist Kagiyama by 22.55 points. Additionally, Chen helped lead Team USA to a Silver Medal in team competition.

Despite being only 22, Chen’s dominance has secured him a spot in the history books of Figure Skating, and has made him a household name worldwide. Congratulations to Nathan Chen and Team USA for their stellar performances in Figure Skating at the Olympic Games.