US-born ice dancer acquires Korean passport

By Alex Park
  • Published : Jul 31, 2017 - 10:42
  • Updated : Jul 31, 2017 - 10:42

A US-born ice dancer has acquired a South Korean passport ahead of the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics, a national skating official said Monday.

An official with the Korea Skating Union said the justice ministry approved Alexander Gamelin's application for special naturalization last Thursday. The 24-year-old will represent his adopted country should he and his partner, Min Yu-ra, qualify for next year's Winter Olympics.

Gamelin and Min have been skating together since 2015. They have been able to compete under the South Korean flag at International Skating Union events because only one member of a tandem has to be South Korean. But at the Olympics, both members of a duo must be South Korean nationals to represent the country.

Gamelin and Min failed to earn an Olympic ticket at the world championships this spring. They will enter the final Olympic qualifying event, the Nebelhorn Trophy, in September in Germany. Five Olympic tickets are up for grabs. (Yonhap)

South Korean ice dancers Min Yu-ra (L) and Alexander Gamelin perform during the Figure Skating Korea Challenge at Mokdong Ice Rink in Seoul on July 30, 2017. Gamelin, born in the United States, has acquired a South Korean passport, which will allow him and Min to represent South Korea at the 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympics if they qualify. (Yonhap)