It’s been a long wait for 25-year-old Mariah Bell.
For the first time in the nine years she’s been a senior competitor, Bell has won the US women’s figure skating national title following the conclusion of the women’s free skate on Friday night — making her the oldest US women’s figure skating national champion in 95 years.
Bell is looking to become the oldest US Olympic women’s singles skater in 94 years. The three-woman US team will be named Saturday.
The 2018 Olympian Karen Chen finished second, while 14-year-old Isabeau Levito — who is not eligible for the 2022 Olympics because of age requirements — finished third.
Alysa Liu, a two-time national champion who was in third place after Thursday’s short program, was forced to pull out of the competition Friday after testing positive for Covid-19. Liu, who said on social media that she was “feeling good physically and mentally,” still potentially could be chosen for the Olympic team.