Jenna McCorkell produced the best performance of her life at the World Figure Skating Championships in Turin at the weekend, finishing 14th overall after a flawless free programme.
After banishing the bad memories of her Olympic debut last month in Vancouver by recording a score of 52.12 in the short programme that left her in 15th place overall, the Coleraine skater showed her self belief and confidence had been restored with a magnificent personal best in the longer free programme.
Her score of 98.78 was the 12th best on the day and the total score of 150.90 eclipsed her previous best of 145.57 at the 2008 European Championships.
The 23 year old revelled in the opportunity to show off her free dance after failing to make the top 24 in Vancouver following her fall in the short programme.
Skating to ‘Voice of the Violin’ played by Joshua Bell, she was foot perfect throughout and bettered her previous best result at the worlds of 20th in Los Angeles last year.
“I just can’t put into words how I feel — it is the total opposite to last month and I am delighted with my personal best scores in both the free and overall score,” said McCorkell, speaking from Turin last night.
“It felt really good again to be out there and performing like I know I can.
“The Olympics are now in the past.”
Yuri Bureiko, her coach since she was 15-years-old, was equally delighted.
“This was a joy to watch! It is the best I have ever seen Jenna skate in competition,” he said.
“She is a brilliant athlete who has shown she has what it takes.”
The competition was won by Olympic silver medallist Mao Asada of Japan with a score of 197.58 as she reversed the result from Vancouver edging out Korea's Kim Yu-Na who suffered her first defeat of the season.
It was a sweet double success for Japan as Daisuke Takahashi landed the men’s title, with Canada’s Patrick Chan the runner-up. Jenna’s husband Kevin van der Perren of Belgium finished in eighth position.