The 23-year-old finished 9th on Thursday and after a “horrendous” performance at Nationals and an “awful” Grand Prix, he said he was happy to “come back here before the Olympics and dust the rust off” ahead of PyeongChang.
“I feel really good for free,” he said.
“This competition I’m trying a really different approach, I’m trying not to come here and do a tonne of programs and overwork myself like I usually would at home training.
“I’m trying to relax, I got in a little bit later than everyone else, missed my first practice. I’m feeling fresh, if at this point the work isn’t done I’m kind of stuffed no matter what so I figure just keeping my legs fresh getting ready would be the way to go.”
Current leader and Olympic podium favourite Soma Uno from Japan won gold with a score of 100.49, just 0.32 points ahead of China’s Boyang Jin who claimed silver while bronze was taken by Uno’s fellow countryman Keiji Tanaka with a score of 90.68.
While there is still the final free program to be skated on Saturday, small medals are awarded after the short program at ISU Championship events.
Kerry’s fellow Australian Andrew Dodds finished 18th after competing in the Ice Dance free program with partner Chantelle Kerry earlier in the day.
Despite being “completely exhausted” the 26-year-old said that he was feeling ready for Friday’s practice before hitting the ice again in the free program.
“I’ve had a bit of a calf injury at the moment so [I just need to] take care of myself so I’m ready to go on Saturday, he said.
Mark Webster opened with a triple axel and completed his triple flip combo but had trouble with the Lutz, finishing 28th.
Earlier in the day, 2016 Ice Dance Champions Matilda Friend and William Badaoui were back on the ice for their free dance scoring 58.96 in a program that the pair feel “is a lot more suited to us”.
“We feel a lot more comfortable doing it and we feel like it shows off our strengths in skating a lot more than the short dance and I think the score kind of reflects that and shows where we can be,” Friend said.
“Considering the setback we had, if we can be at this point in our free dance now then it’s looking promising for the future.”
“We were really proud of that skate, as soon as we finished we knew that we did the most we could on the ice and we really pushed it and when we got off and we saw the scores today we were happy with them,” Badaoui added.
“It was a surreal moment for both of us sitting in that kiss and cry and seeing the scores because three months ago I was in bed with the cast on.”
Dodds and partner Chantelle Kerry felt “settled” after finished thirteenth following the free program with a score of 115.62.
“We felt easy, we felt the ice pretty well,” Dodds said.
“All the elements went well, we got a few calls for the levels on some elements that we can work on. We’ve got a competition next week so we’ll have another shot to get them.
“We were aiming to get the qualifying scores for Worlds here, we were 0.4 off it. With a few extra practices and feedback on that, we should be good to go for next week. We’re pretty happy [but] like always we’re going to be disappointed when we just miss out on something.”
The Four Continents Figure Skating Championships continue until the 27th January. For results click HERE or follow OWIA on Twitter HERE and Facebook HERE for live updates.