Milan, Italy

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Spectacular performances, record-setting programs, surprising newcomers, first-time medalists, personal-best achievements and entertaining show numbers highlighted the ISU World Figure Skating Championships 2018 in Milan. Time to look back at some of the best moments that the skaters gave to the audience.

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Nathan Chen (USA)

Nathan Chen (USA) won his first World title (and medal) at age 18 in a convincing way and with more than 47 points to spare. The American reconfirmed his position as the “quad king”, landing a total of seven clean quads in the competition. “I’m so happy I was able to do what I did here. Again, I learned a lot from the Olympics where I didn’t do things at all the way I wanted to, except in the long program. I wanted to do a better short here and long program too. It was an honor to win and to represent the US and to come out in 2018 with a gold medal,” the U.S. Champion said. Chen gave the USA their first men’s World figure skating medal since Evan Lysacek won gold in 2009.

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Mikhail Kolyada (RUS)

Mikhail Kolyada (RUS) laid the ground for his first world medal with an excellent Short Program and once again showed off his beautiful skating skills in the gala performance to ‘Nothing Else Matters’. “I am happy with the short program, but in the free obviously I made mistakes. The short saved me,” the 23-year-old said. “The last time a Russian man medaled at Worlds was Artur Gachinski in 2011. We need to raise the level of men’s skating in Russia. I think this (medal) will be a positive experience for me and the other guys.”

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Alexei Bychenko (ISR)

Veteran Alexei Bychenko (ISR), at age 30 the oldest competitor in the Men’s event, proved that he is competitive by coming fourth, his career-best result at the World Championships. “Anyway I am very glad with my result. Each season I try to beat my previous result and this season the result at Worlds is great, I am really proud of myself and my team. I really enjoyed every second on ice,” Bychenko explained. Maybe Milan was his last competition. “I don't know yet if I retire, I think about it. First of all I need to take a rest and then we'll see but basically I think that I plan to retire,” noted the 2016 European silver medalist, who wants to stay connected to skating as a coach.

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Kazuki Tomono (JPN)

Kazuki Tomono (JPN) came in as a replacement for Yuzuru Hanyu and made a splash, coming out with the third-best Free Skating to finish fifth in his debut. “It is the first time at such a big competition for me and I learned a lot from it, I become more confident. I really enjoyed to skate in this warm up among all these skaters and this championship overall. I was very lucky to be here and here I came as the substitute but I want to be a real and dignified representative of Japan. I think that my strong point is expression, but I have to work on my skating skills and I will do it for the next season,” Tomono commented.

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Misha Ge (UZB) takes a selfie with skaters after the Exhibition Gala  ©Miguel Medina/AFP/Getty Images

Misha Ge (UZB) has been a crowd favorite for many years and once again did not disappoint, neither in competition nor in the show. And of course, he organized the skaters’ selfie at the end of the gala. The 26-year-old is considering focusing on his career as a choreographer and show skater now. “You can't describe what my emotions are now. There are too many things going on in my mind. It's my whole skating career, like you're watching 20 years of your skating life. It's been a long journey and this is my last competition - well, not 100%, but I'm pretty sure,” Ge said.

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Deniss Vasiljevs (LAT)

Deniss Vasiljevs (LAT) skated really well and achieved his first top-ten finish at the World Championships, the best result for a Latvian skater in many years. “In both programs the audience stood up at the end and that is such a great pleasure and honor for me. I am so pleased with the work I did and the joy I brought. I see this as the first competition of the new Olympic cycle. It is the beginning of the road to Beijing not the end of the Olympics that has already passed. I’m seeing this as a future step. Both programs were almost 100 per cent and I’m super happy about it, it’s a good start,” the 18-year-old shared.

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Donovan Carrillo (MEX)

Newcomer Donovan Carrillo (MEX) placed 22nd in his Worlds debut and is probably the first Mexican man to reach the final at an ISU World Championship. “I’m proud of what I did because it’s been a lot of work back home in Mexico and then to do this in an ISU World Championship is just „wow“. It feels amazing, especially because Mexico is not a figure skating country. Being here is such a big accomplishment to be here, to have qualified and got two personal best scores is the best that could have happened to me,” Donovan shared.

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