Loena Hendrickx of Belgium celebrated her 22nd birthday in style by winning the Women’s Short Program at the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Premio d’Italia Friday in Turin (ITA). Newcomer Maiia Khromykh of Russia came second ahead of her teammate, 2021 ISU World Champion Anna Shcherbakova.
Skating to “Caruso”, Hendrickx completed a triple Lutz-triple toe, triple flip and double Axel, as well as level-four spins and footwork to set a new personal best score of 73.52 points.
“It felt strange, a bit more pressure than normally, I wanted to skate clean and enjoy my day. I am very surprised with the result,” the Belgian Champion said. “I knew I was ready for the short program. I felt confident and I couldn’t have made myself a better present for my birthday,” she added.
Khromykh produced a double Axel, triple Lutz and triple flip-triple toe in her program to “I’ll Take Care of You”. The ISU World Junior competitor earned 72.04 points.
“I don’t really have any emotions now, it was all over so fast,” the ISU World Junior Championships competitor noted. “I am not so happy with my step sequence, which was only a level three. I would rate my performance a four or 3.5 out of five,” she continued.
Shcherbakova opened her program to “The Songs of Distant Earth”, by Kirill Richter, with a double Axel and triple flip, but then reduced her combination to a triple Lutz-double toe. She earned 71.73 points.
“I am not satisfied, I made a big mistake in the jump (combination),” the 17-year-old commented. “I didn’t do such mistakes in my practices, all was fine, I think it was not technical, it was a problem with my head.
“I am nervous every time, but this time I was thinking too much and when you do a combo with a triple loop you don’t have time to think.”