Starr Andrews won her first Grand Prix medal at Skate Canada (Credit: Robin Ritoss)

It was an outstanding fall season for figure skater Starr Andrews, who not only won her first Grand Prix medal (at Skate Canada), but also made history as the first U.S. Black skater to medal at a Grand Prix competition. That accomplishment earned her an invitation to appear on “The Jennifer Hudson Show,” where she taught Hudson how to do a figure skater’s curtsey. 

“She’s so sweet and kind,” said Andrews of Hudson. “I was so excited to go on that show because I’ve been a fan of hers for so long. To see her in person was surreal. The whole experience was so cool.”

The U.S. Figure Skating Championships take place later this month in San Jose, California, and she is happy not to have to travel far from her home in Los Angeles. For the first time in several years, Andrews, 21, will not be the lone Black skater at Nationals; three other Black skaters are scheduled to compete. 

“I’m really excited,” said Andrews. “It’s going to be really nice to see another skater of color out there. I’m so glad they get to skate at Nationals because it’s such an amazing experience. I wish everyone could experience skating in an arena like that.”

This will be Andrews’s sixth time competing in the senior ladies event. Her best placements were sixth in 2018 and 2020. With none of the three women who represented the U.S. at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games competing (two have retired), she has a strong chance of earning a spot on the podium.

“Every year leading up to Nationals, I train so hard and put in so much work,” Andrews said. “For me, my mindset has changed this year, but I feel like my body is so used to the feeling of competing that it’s going to be like every other competition. I’m trying not to put too much pressure on myself because if I do what I trained for, it will be no problem for me to put out really good programs.

“My mindset over the last year has definitely gotten a lot stronger. I do still feel like a kid when I’m on the ice and practicing because for me, it’s still fun. But I think my maturity level and how to handle situations has definitely changed.”

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