It seems hardly coincidental that in the same year as Tonya Harding’s biopic I, Tonya, Mirai Nagasu became the first American woman to land a triple axel at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.
Nagasu, 24, pulled off the triple axel just 21 seconds into her routine, landing and pumping both fists in celebration. The crowd, consisting of fellow American teammates and athletes from other countries, gave her a standing ovation.
“I feel really great. Going into it, I was like a train and I was like, ‘Get on the tracks and get some speed,’” Nagasu to the Associated Press. “And, I tripped a couple times. I don’t know if you could tell. It was more something I could feel, but to nail it the way I did, even out of the corner of my eye, I could see my teammates standing out of excitement. And at that moment, I wanted to stop the music and get off, but I still had my whole program ahead of me.”
Nagasu landed two triple axel jumps at the 2017 CS U.S. International Figure Skating Classic, the first American woman to do in international competition since Tonya Harding in 1991. The California-born skater (whose parents named an Olympic roll after her at the sushi restaurant they own, which is cute as heck) has been a force since age 14 when she won the 2008 U.S. National Championship.
And to leave you with one more heart-warming thing, here’s Nagasu’s exchange with Reese Witherspoon, who fangirled when Nagasu landed the triple axel:
I watched Home Again on the way to the Olympics and I know it’s a movie but I wished you were my mom. You’re my hero. ❤️ https://t.co/LRHEMEXroE
— Mirai Nagasu (@mirai_nagasu) February 12, 2018