Out American figure skater Adam Rippon, 26, casually put his doubters where they belong (the trash) after beating out his his 16-year-old training partner, Nathan Chen, to claim gold at the U.S. Figure Skating Championship.
Despite falling on his only quadruple lutz attempt, Rippon cleanly landed eight triple jumps, helping him surge ahead to earn his first title in eight years.
An emotional Rippon burst into tears after receiving the news of his win.
“It’s not a jump competition; it’s not a choreography competition, and it’s not a spin competition,” Rippon said. “It takes a little bit of everything.”
Asked what message he was sending to those who had written him off, Rippon replied: “I’m like a witch, and you can’t kill me. I keep coming back every year and every year I get better.
Rippon released a less snappier statement via Twitter:
— Adam Rippon (@Adaripp) January 27, 2016