Published : 2014-02-15 21:12
Updated : 2014-02-15 21:33
Two South Korean female short trackers advanced to the finals in the 1,500ｍ race, while one man also reached the finals in the 1,000ｍ event at the Sochi Winter Olympics on Saturday.
In the women's 1,500ｍ, Shim Suk-hee and Kim A-lang made it out of the semifinals at Iceberg Skating Palace. Cho Ha-ri failed to reach the finals after being disqualified for pushing off another skater. In the men's 1,000ｍ, Sin Da-woon also moved on to the finals.
In the women's semis, 19 skaters were paired into two groups of six and one group of seven, with the top two from each group getting a chance to vie for medals. The finals will take place at 4:12 p.m. (9:12 p.m. in South Korea).
Shim and Kim each ended in second place in the first and the third groups. Cho finished her race in third place in the third group but judges ruled that she had impeded Emily Scott of the United States during the race.
Those eliminated from the semis were relegated to the B final. Park Seung-hi, the bronze medalist in the 500ｍ, withdrew from the 1,500ｍ race with a knee injury she sustained in a fall during the 500ｍ final on Thursday. Cho replaced her in Saturday's race.
Park's bronze is the only short track medal for South Korea so far in Sochi.
Shim, 17, is a rising star. She won the 1,500ｍ title at three of the four World Cup stops this season.
South Korea has been by far the most successful country in Olympic short track since it became a medal sport in 1992. Heading into Sochi, South Korea had won 19 gold medals, more than any other nation. South Korea is the only country to have won at least one short track gold medal at every Winter Games.
The women's 1,500ｍ became a medal event in 2002 and South Korea has won two of the three gold medals in the distance so far.
Also on Saturday, Sin Da-woon survived the semifinals in the men's 1,000ｍ, while his teammate Lee Han-bin was disqualified following a collision with another skater.
Eight skaters were paired into two groups of four, with the top two from each group reaching the medal round.
Sin and Lee raced in the first group. Sin came in second place, while Lee fell off the pace early after getting tangled up with Sjinkie Knegt of the Netherlands. Lee appeared to lose his composure after the incident, and judges awarded Knegt, who finished in third, an extra spot in the finals after Lee's interference.
The men's finals will start at 4:25 p.m. (9:25 p.m. in South Korea).
On Monday, Lee finished sixth in the 1,500ｍ final while Sin was eliminated from the 1,500ｍ semifinals after a fall. The South Korean men's 5,000ｍ relay team crashed out of the semfinals on Thursday.
Viktor Ahn of Russia also reached the medal round. Born Ahn Hyun-soo, the triple gold medalist for South Korea at the 2006 Winter Olympics became a Russian citizen in 2011 and is seeking Russia's first Olympic gold in short track. He won the bronze in the 1,500ｍ on Monday.
South Korea has won five of the six Olympic gold medals in the men's 1,000ｍ so far. (Yonhap)