Ando tops field in domestic return

Kyodo

Former two-time world champion Miki Ando, who is aiming to appear at next year’s Sochi Olympics after giving birth to a baby girl in April, got off to a shining start by leading in the women’s short program at a regional competition on Sunday.

Ando, the only female skater to have ever successfully executed a quadruple jump in competition, had the highest score of 56.25 points at the Kanto Championships, which serves as a preliminary event for the national championships in December.

Ando must qualify for the nationals to have any chance of earning a ticket to Sochi in February.

She is competing domestically for the first time in almost two years following a silver-medal performance at the Nebelhorn Trophy two weeks ago in Germany.

On this day, Ando under-rotated a triple loop and was unable to duplicate her high of 59.79 she recorded in the shorts in Nebelhorn.

But she had her moments of brilliance, stirring the crowd by cleanly landing a triple-double combination and mixing in a 2½-revolution leap.