Lin Xiaojun (CHN) staged a remarkable career comeback on Sunday – winning his first gold medal for China, four years after he took an Olympic gold medal for the country of his birth, Republic of Korea, at PyeongChang 2018.
Meanwhile, Park Ji Won (KOR) continued his progress towards the Short Track Crystal Globe title.
Previously competing for Korea as Hyo Jun Lim, Lin was overall ISU World Champion in 2018/19, but left the Korean team the following year. He switched to Chinese nationality in 2020 and began competing for China last July.
Showing all his previous racecraft and power, the 27-year-old won the 500m, ahead of teammate Zhong Yuchen (CHN), who secured the first podium of his career. Kazuki Yoshinaga (JPN) was third.
Lin joy at long journey back
Steven Dubois (CAN) led the 500m early on, but after a frantic jostle for positions, Lin emerged at the front on lap three, and turned on the jets to secure victory.
He went wild with his Chinese teammates afterwards, elated to be top of a podium again after such a lengthy absence.
Lin strikes gold for China in the 500m, five years after winning an Olympic title for Republic of Korea. @ISU
“It’s really exciting to get a medal again, after many years,” said Lin. “It has been a lot of hard work and I have earned it after so much time out. The race was very tough with so much going on, and I had to go hard at the end.
“We have a good young team in China and we are looking forward to going towards the end of the season and trying to do well. I feel very happy.”
Park pushes towards Globe title
After securing 1000m gold on Saturday, executing a masterful race to put himself in pole position overall going into the vital races next weekend, Park consolidated his position with 1500m (2) victory on Sunday.
In a chaotic battle, Furkan Akar had made an early attempt to lap the field, requiring Park to exert himself to reel the Turkish skater in. Mission accomplished, Park stayed up front, pursued by wily Dutch veteran Sjinkie Knegt.
Park Ji Won (KOR) is confident of Crystal Globe glory after victory in the 1500m (2) in Dresden. @ISU
Knegt tried his trademark inside pass on the last lap, but Park had enough to hold him off in a photo finish. Reinis Berzins (LAT) got third place.
“I had to push myself to the limit again to win and I’m very happy,” Park said. “It has been a successful weekend but I’m always very confident in myself.”
Park looks like he will lift the Globe next weekend, but said: “I am not going to celebrate winning yet. We have another week, but I am hopeful and confident. I am looking forward to racing again next week in Dordrecht.”
China won the men’s 5000m relay, ahead of Japan and Hungary.
The ISU World Cup Short Track season concludes in Dordrecht, Netherlands next weekend, February 10-12.
World Cup Classification - Men
Overall World Cup Classification
World Cup Classification - Women
Overall World Cup Classification
World Cup Classification – Mixed Relay
Where to watch
Viewers will be able to watch the Saturday and Sunday afternoon (local time) World Cup sessions via their national broadcaster/channel.
For countries where there are no broadcasters and for the qualification and repechage races, the ISU will offer a live stream on the Skating ISU YouTube Channel. You will find the full list on the Where to watch webpage here.
ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating Series events 2022/23:
Oct 28 - 30, 2022 Montréal /CAN
Nov 04 - 06, 2022 Salt Lake City /USA
Dec 09 - 11, 2022 Almaty /KAZ
Dec 16 - 18, 2022 Almaty /KAZ
Feb 03 - 05, 2023 Dresden /GER
Feb 10 - 12, 2023 Dordrecht /NED
About ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating Series
The ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating Series celebrates its 25th anniversary in 2022. Launched in 1997/98, the Series usually consists of six events (four during an Olympic season) that take place in North America, Europe and Asia.
The competitions have a single distance character across nine distances (500, 1000 and 1500 meters for Women and Men, Women 3000 meters Team Relay, Men 5000 meters Team Relay and a Mixed Gender Relay over 2000 meters), and to mark its 25th anniversary, the series now also includes an Overall World Classification based on an accumulation of points from all individual distances which will determine a Combined Season Ranking and a Season Champion in the Women and Men categories. These Champions will be awarded with the new ISU World Cup Short Track Crystal Globe Trophy.
Each competition is held over three days (day 1 is dedicated to all Qualifying Rounds, days 2 and 3 consist of the last Qualifying Rounds followed by the World Cup sessions). For the Mixed Gender Relay Teams (2 Women & 2 Men), the Women 3000 meters Relay races and Men 5000 meters Relay races a maximum of four Skaters shall compete and must belong to the same ISU Member. For further information please visit isu.org.