Newly crowned U.S. ice dance champions Madison Chock of Redondo Beach and Evan Bates were nominated to the U.S. Olympic team on Sunday, the final day of the U.S. championships in Nashville. The Beijing Games will be their third Olympic appearance as a couple and the fourth for Bates, who competed at the 2010 Games with a different partner. He will become the first four-time figure skating Olympian.
“It never gets old. It’s special each time,” Bates said during a news conference.
Madison Hubbell and Zach Donohue, who placed fourth at the 2018 Pyeongchang Games and were the runners-up at this year’s national championships, also were nominated to the Beijing team. The third ice dance nomination went to Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker, who will be first-time Olympians. All three ice dance teams train in Montreal. “We’re excited to go with this team,” said Hubbell, who plans to retire from competition after this year’s world championships.
Also on Sunday, pair champions Ashley Cain-Gribble and Timothy LeDuc and 2021 champions Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier were nominated to the two allotted U.S. pair berths.
Knierim and Frazier train at Great Park Ice in Irvine. They had to petition the U.S. figure skating selection committee for their nomination because Frazier had tested positive for the coronavirus before the competition, leaving them unable to skate. Frazier was still in isolation Sunday and said he was unsure when he’d be released and allowed to…