Ilia Malinin won gold at the World Championships, setting a record along the way. | Eric Bolte-USA TODAY Sports

Ilia Malinin has asserted himself as possibly the best figure skater in the world. Now he’s flirting with the potential to be the best male figure skater in history.

The teenage newcomer to Team USA landed a quad axel in style over the weekend at the World Championships. He had left people in suspense about whether he’d even attempt it. The quad axel is the most difficult jump in all of figure skating.

Yet the American attempted it and landed it in the early moments of his routine.

He wasn’t done yet, landing a total of six quadruple jumps. That means for every jump, he rotated four times. In the air. And landed on his skates.

Most people can’t do one.

Artistry and athleticism. It doesn’t get more beautiful than this.

Social media went gaga for his performance.

Tai Babilonia, the former figure skating partner of Randy Gardner, couldn’t believe what she saw.

Malinin won the men’s singles world title, racking up the highest score in the history of the World Figure Skating Championship, 227.79.

The score sent Mailinin crashing to the floor in disbelief.

“I couldn’t even hold myself up, it was that emotional to me,” he said after the competition, according to NBC Sports. “I’m still in shock. I still can’t believe I did this. It’s just incredible.”

Malinin last year made some headlines with a comment on Instagram that he “can’t be straight” because he needs better scores from the judges.

He quickly backtracked.

“I want to truly apologize to everyone for my ‘teenage’ behavior and I am aware that this mistake can’t really be undone,” he said, according to Christine Brennan of USA Today. “I hope that everyone understands I mean no hate to anyone. Thank you all for understanding this mistake and making it known to me that I made a mistake.”

We don’t know if Malinin is gay, straight or otherwise. What we know is he’s a teenager who made a flub on social media.

And the gays, along with so many others, will be cheering for his artistry and athleticism for years to come.

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