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Mirai Nagasu Becomes First-Ever American Female to Land a Triple Axel in the Olympics

At the the women’s free skate portion of the team figure skating competition on Feb. 12 at the Gangneung Ice Arena in Pyeongchang, South Korea (Feb. 11 in the United States), Mirai Nagasu became the first American woman to successfully land a triple axel in the Olympics. An axel is the most difficult of jumps as it requires a person to launch in a forward position (most jumps use backward skating momentum).

Nagasu is the third female overall to accomplish this Olympic feat. Japan’s Midori Ito (in 1992) and Mao Asada (in 2010) also landed triple axels during the Olympics.

The 24-year-old from Montebello, California later received a personal-best score of 137.53 for the entire routine.

Watch this historic achievement in American Olympic history: