FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, April 24th, 2020
NATHAN CHEN, YUZURU HANYU, AND ALYSA LIU HEADLINE “U.S. FIGURE SKATING: A SEASON’S BEST” THIS SUNDAY AT 2 P.M. ET ON NBC
Sunday’s One-Hour Special Features Medal-Winning Performances from 2020 ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships, 2020 Toyota U.S. Figure Skating Championships and 2019 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final
1998 Olympic Gold Medalist Tara Lipinski & Three-Time U.S. Champion Johnny Weir Host the Special Event
Americans Chen, Liu, Mariah Bell, Madison Chock & Evan Bates, and Jessica Calalang & Brian Johnson Among Skaters Featured for 2019-20 Season’s Top Performances
NBC Sports Gold’s “Figure Skating Pass” Releases a New Episode Today of Simply the Best, a Four-Part Figure Skating Series
STAMFORD, Conn. – April 24, 2020 – Two-time world champion Nathan Chen, two-time Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu, two-time U.S. champion Alysa Liu, and two-time Olympic tandem Madison Chock & Evan Bates take center stage this weekend in the special “U.S. Figure Skating: A Season’s Best,” airing this Sunday, April 26 at 2 p.m. ET on NBC.
1998 Olympic gold medalist Tara Lipinski and three-time U.S. Champion Johnny Weir host the one-hour show, which features the best figure skating performances of the 2019-20 season. In addition, hosts Lipinski and Weir will provide commentary together on Instagram Live during the show.
The special highlights memorable moments from the 2020 ISU Four Continents Figure Skating Championships, 2020 Toyota U.S. Figure Skating Championships and 2019 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Final, including seven medal-winning performances (five gold), four U.S. Championship medal-winning performances (two gold), and several of the highest scores ever recorded.
Following is a look at the skaters featured in the show:
- Nathan Chen (2019 Grand Prix Final – Free Skate): In Torino, Italy, two-time world champion Chen topped Hanyu of Japan to win his third straight Grand Prix Final. He also earned the highest free skate and total scores ever recorded at the competition. Chen has been undefeated since placing fifth at the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics and most recently won his fourth consecutive U.S. championship, making him the first man to achieve this feat since Brian Boitano in 1988.
- Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan (2020 Four Continents Championships – Short Program): With a reprisal of his 2018 Olympic short program, the two-time Olympic champion of Japan earned the highest short program score ever recorded at the 2020 Four Continents Championships. The victory in Seoul marked Hanyu’s first time winning the Four Continents event.
- Alysa Liu (2020 U.S. Championships – Free Skate): Liu’s program included a quad and two triple Axels, which led to her second consecutive U.S. title at 14 years old. She became the youngest-ever U.S. champion when she won the 2019 title at age 13. Liu went on to win the bronze medal at the 2020 World Junior Figure Skating Championships last month.
- Madison Chock & Evan Bates (2020 U.S. Championships – Free Dance): In Greensboro, N.C., two-time Olympians Chock & Bates posted the highest free dance score ever recorded at the U.S. Championships event as they won their second U.S. title and first since 2015.
- Mariah Bell (2020 U.S. Championships – Free Skate): Coached by Rafael Arutunian and 2018 Pyeongchang Olympic team bronze medalist Adam Rippon, Bell finished second at the U.S. Championships in Greensboro, N.C. An emotional highlight of the event, Bell earned a huge standing ovation from the crowd.
- Aliona Kostornaya of Russia (2019 Grand Prix Final – Short Program): In Torino, Italy, Russia’s Kostornaya posted the highest score ever recorded in the short program and total score to earn the Grand Prix Final title. Kostornaya led a Russian sweep of the ladies’ event with teammates Anna Shcherbakova and Aleksandra Trusova finishing second and third, respectively.
- Jessica Calalang & Brian Johnson (2020 U.S. Championships – Free Skate): A breakout performance for Calalang & Johnson, the team earned the best free skate score in the pairs’ event at U.S. Championships in Greensboro, N.C., where they finished second overall.
Commentators on the encore programs include Lipinski, Weir, play-by-play commentator Terry Gannon and Tanith White.
Also, NBC Sports Gold’s “Figure Skating Pass” presents Simply the Best, a four-part series featuring the top ten highest-scoring short programs and free skates from each discipline this season. The series airs each Friday and continues today with Part 3, while Part 4 airs next Friday, May 1.
Fans can purchase the enhanced “Figure Skating Pass,” now priced at $9.99 (originally $59.99), today by visiting NBCSportsGold.com.
“Figure Skating Pass” features a variety of content, including live and on-demand coverage of all championship events and figure skating sectionals, which began with the U.S. International Classic September 19-21, 2019. In addition, “Figure Skating Pass” provides live and on-demand coverage of the ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Series, U.S. Figure Skating Championships, 2020 ISU European Figure Skating Championships, U.S. Synchronized Skating Championships, ISU Four Continents Championships and more.
Find NBC Sports Gold in the NBC Sports app. Available on Apple iOS & tvOS, Android, Android TV, Amazon Fire TV, Roku, Chromecast, Xfinity X1, Xfinity Flex and NBCSportsGold.com. NBC Sports Gold is powered by Playmaker Media, NBC Sports Digital’s technology service which provides end-to-end support for companies in need of best-in-class live streaming and VOD solutions.
Coverage on NBC will stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app. Coverage of Olympic Sports on NBC Sports Group platforms is a presentation of Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA.