Samsung ISU World Cup Short Track - Quebec City (CAN) 1-3 February
The Korean team, despite being without their star athlete Ahn Hyun-Soo, along with the Chinese team continued this weekend at the Samsung ISU World Cup Short Track where they left off in December 2007, with wins in all of the events except for one. The Korean team left Quebec City with 9 medals, while the Chinese team took 7 medals. Surely motivated by skating in front of a home crowd, the skaters from Canada had a strong performance this weekend, earning 9 medals.
The schedule of races at this weekend’s Samsung ISU World Cup Short Track had the athletes compete in the 1000 meters distance twice. The first of the ladies 1000 meters was won by Kalyna Roberge from Canada. This was to be the only race that neither a skater from Korea or China would take the top place on the podium. Evgenia Radanova from Bulgaria showed she was still a fierce competitor, taking second place. Seung-Yi Park of Korea was third. In the second ladies 1000 meters event, Yang Zhou of China took the win, with fellow teammate, Quihong Liu, taking third. Sun-Yu Jin of Korea split the Chinese skaters for second place.
Both the ladies and men 1500 meters events were dominated by the Koreans, with the skaters taking first and second places. On the ladies side, the win went to Sun-Yu Jin of Korea followed by teammate Shin-Young Yang. Allison Baver of the United States took third place. On the men’s side, first and second places went to Korean skaters Ho-Suk Lee and Seung- Hoon Lee. Charles Hamelin of Canada took third place.
The ladies 500 meters event was dominated by the fast Chinese skaters, who once again, demonstrated their strength in this distance. Meng Wang won the event, with teammate Nannan Zhao taking third. Kalyna Roberge, split the Chinese skaters to take second place. The men’s 500 meters event was won by Korean skater Yoon-Gy Kwak. Charles Hamelin of Canada pleased the home crowd with a second place finish. Jon Eley of Great Britain was a surprise presence on the podium, taking third place for his first podium of the 2007-08 season.
The weekend concluded with the relay events. In the ladies 3000m relay, the Chinese team took the win ahead of the crowd favorite Canadian ladies team. Bulgaria offered a surprise performance to take third place. The men’s 5000 meters relay was a closely fought race, with the top 3 teams separated by less than 0.9 seconds. The Koreans took the win, with the United States in second and Canada in third. The next and final Samsung ISU World Cup Short Track event takes place on February 8-10, 2008 in Salt Lake City (USA).