SKATING to the tune of AC-DC’s Highway to Hell and Seven-Nation Army by the White Stripes, national figure skater Julian Yee was greeted with loud cheers from the Filipino crowd as he twisted and turned on the ice rink.
The Winter Olympian, who was the last to skate out in the free skating round at the SM Mall Ice Skating Rink in Mandaluyong, was effortless and showed great poise throughout his routine.
Clad in a black and white camouflage round neck costume, he gazed intently at the crowd and his every spin was greeted with screams and cheers.
He ended his four-minute routine with aplomb to win the country’s fourth gold medal of the day and to retain the gold he won in the 2017 Games in Kuala Lumpur.
The 22-year-old, who is based in Canada, scored an impressive 139.27 points in the free skating round to finish first in that round. On Nov 29, Julian had also finished first in the short programme with 63.35 points.
For Julian, he just wanted his choreography and routine to engage with the crowd.
“I tried to engage the audience. I wanted to make everybody feel more involved in my skating and feel like skating with me together.
The special music arrangement has made Julian the top male skater in the region.
“I feel very proud to have got the country’s fourth gold medal. I am happy we got a good start.
“To be honest, Christopher (Caluza) from the Philippines did well, and I was a little stressed. But that gave me some focus too.
“I hope skating gets more public exposure after this win and a little more attention. We have the potential to create world-class skaters.”
Julian admitted that he was a little surprised to see the Filipino crowd cheering his every move.
“This is home ground, you expect people to support their own people more. But you know what, when it comes to figure skating, all of us support each other because we want to grow the sport together.