Japan’s Hanyu chasing perfection, not records

Source:AFP Published: 2015-12-11 23:48:02

Japan's Yuzuru Hanyu insisted perfection rather than records was his goal in Saturday's free skating final after smashing another mark at the ISU Grand Prix Final of figure skating.

The Olympic champion set a new highest score of 110.95 in the men's short program in Barcelona on Thursday night to lead world champion Javier Fernandez of Spain and Chinese teenager Jin Boyang.

Hanyu's "Ballade No.1" by Frederic Chopin created pandemonium among the crowd in the International Convention Centre. But despite his two quadruples, a triple Axel and level four for his three spins, Hanyu was dissatisfied.

"I don't care for the score alone," he said of a mark which surpassed his own best from the NHK Trophy last month. "The steps only got a level three and rather than getting more points I want to perfect these elements."

A large contingent of Japanese fans have traveled to the Catalan capital to encourage Hanyu in his endeavor for an unprecedented third consecutive men's title.

They should feel at home as his free program will be to the Japanese movie soundtrack ­"Seimei" by Shigeru Umebayashi.

"The short program is the short and the free is another day," said the 21-year-old, who lost his world title last year to Fernandez. "Each performance is different, a different environment, a different day and for the free program I want to perform well and express a different Japanese tradition to the audience."

Fernandez, 24, has an uphill battle to deliver a first title to his home crowd as he trails 9.43 points behind his Toronto training partner.

Jin, 18, is looking to become just the second Chinese man to medal at a Grand Prix Final after Li Chengjiang in 2004.

"I've grown up from last year," said Jin, who was a silver medalist in the junior Grand Prix Final in 2014. "Compared to last year I've moved up to the senior level and I've improved in the performance aspect and my jumps are more consistent."

Posted in: Winter Sport

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