S. Korea picks up three more short track gold medals, ends with five titles

SAPPORO-- South Koreans picked up three more gold medals in short track speed skating at the Asian Winter Games on Wednesday, and ended their campaign by winning five of eight titles at stake over three days.

In the women's competition, Shim Suk-hee won the 1,000m gold over teammate Choi Min-jeong, and then the two led the country to the 3,000m relay gold medal.

On the men's side, Seo Yi-ra was the men's 1,000m champion, just ahead of teammate Sin Da-woon. The men's team took the silver medal in the 5,000m relay.

As expected, South Korea dominated the short track competition. The country had won 25 gold medals at seven previous Asian Games, and the trend held up at Makomanai Indoor Skating Rink.

For women, Shim and Choi each earned two gold medals. They're the first South Korean female short trackers to win multiple Asian Games titles in 14 years.

Shim is the current world No. 1 in the 1,500m, but Choi beat her there. Then in the 1,000m, where Choi has excelled with two victories in the International Skating Union (ISU) World Cup Short Track this season, Shim got the better of her teammate. This was Shim's first international victory in the 1,000m this winter.

In the men's 1,000m, three South Koreans actually finished 1-2-3, as Lee Jung-su came in third place. However, the medal policy at the competition prevents one country from sweeping the podium. If a country produces the three top performers, then the fourth-place athlete is awarded the bronze medal.

In Wednesday's case, Keita Watanabe of Japan, the only other skater in the final, walked away with bronze.

Park Se-yeong, who'd earlier won the men's 1,500m gold, tried to anchor the team to the relay title as well, but he fell at the last minute trying to catch China. South Korea finished a little under a second behind for the silver.

Source: Yonhap News Agency

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