Exclusive Ilia Malinin – figure skating: on the quad Axel, Hanyu Yuzuru, Nathan Chen and more

Ilia Malinin: Focus on growth – and a five-fold jump?

Last season, after two spectacular performances at the US Championships in Nashville, Malinin almost jumped into Team USA for Beijing, only to miss the selection due to limited work in the senior international arena.

He would finish ninth at the 2022 World Championships, which was his senior international debut in the Covid-19 off-season.

Malinin said these experiences – coupled with his junior title – only contributed to his development.

“What I’ve learned this year is that you don’t have to be afraid to let it all out in competition,” he said. “It’s not just that you have to land everything, but also make it fun for you and the audience. I think that’s where performing and having fun with the audience comes in.”

Malinin spent most of the off-season working on his Program Components mark, his craftsmanship, to bolster his technical prowess, including a quadruple Axel. Partially collaborated with Shae Lynn Bournea well-known choreographer who has created programs for Nathan Chen and many others.

“I want to have fun and just have fun” in my shows, added Malinin.

Will he next time try a jump that seemed impossible not so long ago: five times?

“This season I’m honing my quad jumps to be so easy and consistent that I have, you know, room to add another rotation,” said Malinin. “I want to start having it in the back of my mind to see because, I mean, I think it’s quite possible with what I’m already doing.”

“Of course we are focused on the season and we think that after the worlds and all the competitions are over, I might try to give it a try [quintuples]. I can just do my best, just start trying.

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