Yuzuru Hanyu said Thursday that the Rostelecom Cup, the fifth stop on the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating, is a tournament at which he feels compelled to excel.
Less than two weeks after winning Helsinki’s Grand Prix event despite struggling with some of his jumps, Hanyu took to the ice in practice with a number of notables from Russia’s figure skating world on hand.
The 23-year-old Hanyu worked on the quad loop and quad salchow he made mistakes with in Helsinki.
«I think I earned passing marks today,» he said after practicing his jumps. «This (place) brings back various memories,» said Hanyu, who is competing in the event for the fourth time.
Among those looking on at the rink was Tatiana Tarasova, who has coached a host of the sport’s greatest stars.
Hanyu, who has always looked up to Russian great Evgeni Pluschenko, was greeted by Pluschenko’s coach Alexei Mishin. As Hanyu warmed up, Mishin wished him well and said he always keeps an eye on the Japanese star.
«Because of where we are, these kinds of people are watching, so I just have to deliver a performance worthy of me,» said two-time defending Olympic champion Hanyu.
Not counting his four Grand Prix Final championships, he has never won two Grand Prix series events in a single season. Hanyu enters Friday’s short program having posted the season’s best scores in both the short program and free skate.
Figure skating: Hanyu looks to stay injury-free with focus on GP final
All — Kyodo News+