Top Figure Skating Performances of the 2023-24 Season

Jackie Wong breaks down his top performances from Team USA during the 2023-24 figure skating season.

Photo Credit Getty Images
By Jackie Wong

Doing a top performances season recap is always difficult, so naturally, I decided to make it even more difficult on myself by relying on memory only. I figure, if they are to be the most memorable performances for me, they probably should be the ones that stand out in my mind the most. So, in no particular order, here goes.

Ilia Malinin: World Championships Free Skate
Given that this was my very last impression of the season – and it was a historic one –Malinin’s free skate to win his first World title was the first thing that popped into my mind. Last program of the last competition of the season, everything on the line, and Malinin delivered the performance of his life. Even NPR talked about it.

Ava Ziegler: NHK Trophy Free Skate
Now Ziegler didn’t come out of nowhere to win NHK, but really, she did come out of nowhere to win NHK. We have seen her potential before, but she hasn’t put together a complete competition until her win at NHK Trophy. Fifth after the short, she skated lights out in the free, then waited skater after skater until no one figured out how to beat her.

Madison Chock and Evan Bates: Grand Prix Final Free Dance
We can call Chock and Bates two-time World champions now, but in December, they were making all the tweaks and doing all the prep work to continue to make improvements. Their Pink Floyd free dance was at its best here, including one of my favorite stationary lifts of the season right at the start.

Josephine Lee: U.S. Championships Free Skate
There’s something about Lee and the U.S. Championships that just clicks. After taking a surprise fifth in 2023 in her debut on the senior level, she took it one step further with a silver medal this year. And it was thanks in huge part to this program, which won her the free skate portion of the event.

Olivia Flores and Luke Wang: World Junior Championships Short Program
There’s a lot of potential with Flores and Wang, and their short program this season was such a signal of that potential. But it was also their build during the season that was so impressive. Something clicked in the middle of their season, and then they just sprinted to their silver at Junior Worlds. And this, their first short program over 60 points, was so well deserved.

Leah Neset and Artem Markelov: Junior Grand Prix Final Free Dance
Last season was the breakout for Neset and Markelov, and this season saw an even more improved version. Every aspect of their skating and their pairing improved over the past year, and it was most evident in this free dance at the Junior Grand Prix Final. They would go on to win their third consecutive U.S. junior title a month later.

Camden Pulkinen AND Maxim Naumov: U.S. Championships Free Skate
Ok I’m cheating a bit here, but I had to mention the battle of the Toscas in one line. The final group of the men’s free skate in Columbus gave us two angsty, fiery Toscas. And they were both phenomenal, and for me, two of the best of the day.

Jason Brown: World Championships Short Program
Every time I watch Brown skate, I thank my lucky stars that I get to see him one more time in competition. And at some point, it will be the last time, but not quite yet! He’s taking his own path now, choosing to focus solely on the second half of the season. We didn’t know how Worlds would look for him, but this short was quintessential Jason Brown.

Isabeau Levito: World Championships Free Skate
The redemption that Levito had at Worlds after an uncharacteristic collapse at the U.S. Championships was the kind of resilience story that will stick with an athlete for the rest of their career. She not only made a strong showing at the World Championships, but she also put down the best of her season and became only the second U.S. woman to win silver at Worlds in the last 17 years.

Amber Glenn: Skate America Short Program
The season was a life-changing one for Glenn, and it all began at Skate America with this short program. She would make history the next day with her first clean triple Axel in competition, and then months later with her first U.S. title. And though the season was full of challenges for her, programs like this one showed her that she belongs with the best.

Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko: U.S. Championships Free Dance
It was three years ago when Carreira and Ponomarenko made the coaching switch to Scott Moir, and the improvements were so evident this season. This free dance, in particular, was a sign that they have really found their voice in a very crowded field of incredible ice dance teams. Their U.S. Championships performance was an announcement that they are here to stay.