Skating to Pitbull’s “Fireball” in the Shmucker’s Skating Spectacular, newly crowned U.S. junior men’s champion Andrew Torgashev was indeed on fire as the lyrics professed.
In capturing the crown, Torgashev blew away the rest of the Greensboro, North Carolina, field, finishing ahead of the silver medalist by 32 points. Short program and free skate scores of 75.61 and 149.63 respectively were both personal bests, and his total score of 225.24 set a new record for a junior man at a U.S. Championships.
“Coming into nationals my goal was to skate two clean programs,” Torgashev said. “I wasn’t thinking about placement.”
Torgashev showed a lot personality and pizzaz in his “Fireball” routine, belying his age. At 13 years old, Andrew was the youngest competitor in the junior men’s field.
“The judges don’t care about age. They care about how you skate,” Torgashev said matter-of-factly.
Despite his youth, Torgashev, who was fourth in the novice ranks in 2014, shows a lot of technical prowess. both his short and free programs in Greensboro were skated virtually flawlessly. The short program included a triple flip-triple toe combination and a triple Lutz, while the free skate incorporated six triples, including a rarely sen double Axle-half loop-triple Salchow combination. The judges awarded grades of execution of primarily 2s and 3s in both programs.