U.S. champion and Olympian Jason Brown filed a petition for a place on the U.S. team for the World Figure Skating Championships as he misses this weekend’s Nationals with a back strain, according to U.S. Figure Skating.
“He will be back on the ice next week, so if all goes well and he continues to progress without pain, I don’t see why he can’t be ready for Worlds,” said Brown’s coach, Kori Ade, according to Icenetwork.com.
Brown, 21, hasn’t competed since October. He withdrew one week before a scheduled start at NHK Trophy in Japan in November with the back strain.
“I was trying really hard to push through for Nationals, but my back pain flared up again during training,” Brown said in a statement announcing his U.S. Championships withdrawal on Jan. 7. “Under my doctors’ orders, I have shut down all training in order to allow my body to heal completely.”
U.S. Figure Skating will consider Brown’s health and his credentials — the only active U.S. men’s skater with Olympic experience, for one — when deciding whether to put him on the three-man World Championships team, which will be announced some time after the Nationals free skate Sunday (NBC and NBC Sports Live Extra, 4-6 p.m. ET).
Worlds are in Boston in two months.
Brown finished fourth at last year’s World Championships, the best finish by a U.S. man at an Olympics or Worlds since Evan Lysacek‘s titles in 2009 and 2010.