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Korean bobsleigh chief quits ahead of PyeongChang Olympics

The chief of South Korea's bobsleigh and skeleton governing body has resigned from his post, officials here said Thursday, raising concerns for the country's 2018 PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games preparations.

Officials at the Korea Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation said their president Oh Chang-hee has decided to step down. The 54-year-old reportedly said during a board meeting Wednesday that he feels responsible for the KBSF getting embroiled in various controversies.

An official at the Korean Sport and Olympic Committee also confirmed that Oh has offered to resign.
This undated photo shows Korea Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation President Oh Chang-hee. (Yonhap)
This undated photo shows Korea Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation President Oh Chang-hee. (Yonhap)

Oh, a businessman in the tourism industry, became the KBSF President in July 2016 after serving as the organization's vice president for a year.

Following Oh's departure, one of the two KBSF vice presidents will take over as caretaker of the national bobsleigh and skeleton governing body until a new leader is elected. Under KBSF rules, the top post must be filled within two months.

South Korea expects at least two medals from the bobsleigh and skeleton events at the PyeongChang Olympics.

Although their recent performance wasn't good, Won Yun-jong and Seo Young-woo, the two-man bobsleigh team that finished as the world No. 1 last season, are hopeful of Olympic medals at the PyeongChang Games. And Yun Sung-bin in the men's skeleton is also a medal contender, as he finished second overall in each of the past two International Bobsleigh and Skeleton Federation World Cup seasons.

The KBSF has been suffering from various controversies regarding national team selection. At its July board meeting, some officials pointed out that the national team selection process isn't transparent, and there is unfair treatment between core members and the reserve squad.

"Since these kinds of problems were reported to the sports ministry and KSOC," a KBSF official said on condition of anonymity, "Oh seems to have been feeling the pressure." (Yonhap)