Figure skating phenom Nathan Chen’s path to the Olympics starts in his hometown.

The 18-year-old, who was born and raised in Salt Lake City, is one of the headlining talents at the 2017 U.S. International Figure Skating Classic at the Salt Lake City Sports Complex. The competition, one in a series of 10 competitions that makes up the 2017 ISU Challenger Series, begins Thursday night and ends Saturday.

Chen is the reigning 2017 U.S. Champion and considered the next great American male figure skater. Chen, a daredevil on the ice, became the first skater ever to perform and land five quadruple jumps in one program in January.


What •
FigureSkating Classic, Salt Lake City Sports Complex

Thursday •Men’s short program and pair’s short programs

Friday • Icedance, women’s short program, pairs free skate, men’s free skate

Saturday • Free dance and women’s free skate

Tickets • Available at the Sports Complex. There are no advance sales.

A month later in PyeongChang, the site of the 2018 Olympics in South Korea, Chen once again rewrote the record books, landing five quad jumps at an ISU Championship to win the Four Continents Championships.

In World Championships in April, Chen finished sixth after falling twice on the ice while attempting a record six quadruple jumps among the best in Helsinki, Finland. Chen’s push toward an Olympic berth will come on the same ice he grew up skating on at the Sports Complex. He eventually relocated to Southern California at 12 to work full time with his coach.

Chen is one of 22 athletes representing Team USA at the Classic this weekend. Three-time champion Max Aaron returns to the event. The likes of Tim Dolensky and Sean Rabbitt, who finished seventh and eighth respectively at this year’s U.S. Championships, will compete as well.

Karen Chen — no relation to Nathan — is the reigning U.S. female champion and will be headlining the women’s field alongside Mariah Bell, a bronze medalist at the U.S. Championships in January. Four Continents medalist Mirai Nagasu and Paige Rydberg also are contenders.