MOSCOW — Nathan Chen’s technique trumped Yuzuru Hanyu’s superiority in program components to win the men’s figure skating event at the Rostelecom Cup on Saturday.
Chen, the U.S. champion, reeled off four quads including a spectacular opening quad Lutz-triple toe opening combination and a quad-double-double cascade in the second half of the free skate.
Hanyu did three quads but won the free skate segment with a six-point advantage on components. However, Chen was too far ahead after Friday’s short program.
“The beginning half of my program, I was really happy with,” Chen said. “The quads I did relatively well … then in the second half I got a bit tired.”
Hanyu, the Olympic champion, said he needs to get more rotation on his jumps.
“I realize again how important it is to practice more, and in skating each element is so important and I just need to perform each element cleanly,” the Japanese skater said.
Mikhail Kolyada of Russia won bronze, followed by compatriot Dmitri Aliev, who fell three times.
Russians took all of the spots on the pairs podium, led by Evgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov whose high-spirited free skate opened with a soaring triple twist and included two long-distance throw triples. Their overall finish was some 20 points ahead of Olympic silver medalists Ksenia Stolbova and Fedor Klimov, who were plagued by two Stolbova falls.
Kristina Astakhova and Alexei Rogonov won bronze.
American brother-sister duo Maia and Alex Shibutani won the ice dance, placing first in the short and free dances. Two Russian couples took silver and bronze, respectively: Ekaterina Bobrova and Dmitri Soloviev, and Alexandra Stepanova and Ivan Bukin.
“There was a lot of anticipation for us heading into this week. … We’re very proud of the work that we’ve done and this was a great start to our season,” Alex Shibutani said.