U.S. champion Gracie Gold was understandably shaken by her fourth-place finish at the World Championships on Saturday night.
Gold led after the short program Thursday but fell on the opening jump combination in her free skate and later doubled a planned triple Lutz. She ended up 2.4 points shy of bronze.
“It was one of those really, really tragic skates where you just feel like you couldn’t do anything right,” Gold said, according to the Boston Globe. “I’m really disappointed. And I feel really sorry for Boston and the United States because I feel like I let them down when they needed me most. I’m sorry to [my team] and everybody that supported me that I couldn’t deliver.”
Gold previously finished fourth at the Sochi Olympics and the 2015 World Championships. Her total score this year, despite the flaws, would have won the 2015 World title.
After she skated Saturday, countrywoman Ashley Wagner followed with a personal-best free skate, jumping from fourth after the short program to a silver medal to end a nine-year U.S. women’s medal drought.
“I’m really sad, and I’m really embarrassed,” Gold said in the video interview below. “I feel really ashamed of how I skated and how I tried to represent my country. It just is a really, really terrible moment for me and my skating.”
Gold entered the night as the top hope to end the longest U.S. Olympic/Worlds women’s medal drought since the first Winter Olympics in 1924.
“It just shows that I’m not up there with the rest of the world, but maybe in the future I can be a better skater,” Gold said, according to an International Skating Union press release. “I still have hopes for the 2018 Olympics, but we’ll have to step back and re-evaluate what’s realistic for my future skating.”
An interviewer suggested to Gold that she was being a bit harsh on herself.
“If you look at the skating and the qualify of skating and the scores, I just feel that it’s accurate, and it’s what everybody else is going to say anyway,” Gold responded.