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Kwan set to make an August comeback in Seoul

MICHELLE Kwan will skate before an audience for the first time in three years when she joins world champion Kim Yu-na in Ice All-Stars 2009 in Seoul, South Korea, in August.

The five-time world champion and nine-time US champion has been practicing and working out for most of this year. Her performance in Seoul could be an indication that competitive skating is still a possibility with the Vancouver Olympics looming.

Kwan's agent announced her plans on Friday.

"Michelle has turned down other invitations, but she and Yu-na have a mutual admiration society going," Shep Goldberg said.

"Michelle is feeling healthy and has her abilities up to the standards she sets for herself, which are very high standards."

Kwan, who recently graduated from the University of Denver and has been accepted into the master's program at Tufts, has not been in a competitive environment since a foot injury forced her withdrawal from the Turin Olympics in 2006.

Her last public performance was on August 16, 2006, in Las Vegas with Champions on Ice.

Right timing

When Kim invited Kwan to the show, the two-time Olympic medalist felt the timing was right.

"The timing was a factor," Goldberg said. "She is skating at the standards she demands of herself to perform in front of an audience."

Kwan, who turns 29 on Tuesday, has until September to enter US competitions leading to January's national championships, which also serve as the Olympic trials. She would need to qualify through regional events to get to nationals in Spokane, Washington.

Goldberg said Kwan has not made a decision yet about trying for another Olympics. She won silver in Nagano in 1998 and bronze in 2002 in Salt Lake City. But Kwan said in March, when the world championships were in Los Angeles, that she always will test her limits.

"I don't have a timetable. I do have goals," she said. "Right now, I want to do one thing at a time before I make any decisions. I want to make sure everything is out there and I look at all the options. Eventually, I'll get to a place I am comfortable with."


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