Russia’s Ahn wins 1,500m short track preliminary heat to advance

SOCHI, Russia — Viktor Ahn easily advanced through the preliminaries of 1,500-meter short track, winning his Olympic heat skating for his new country of Russia.

Ahn was a three-time gold medalist for his native South Korea, but after missing the Winter Olympics four years ago, he changed his name and became a Russian citizen.

Also moving on to Monday’s semifinals was medal contender Charles Hamelin of Canada, South Koreans Lee Han-bin and Sin Da-woon, and Americans J.R. Celski and Eddy Alvarez. Chris Creveling of the U.S. lost a photo finish for third in his heat and failed to advance.

China’s Shi Jingnan was knocked out of his heat, won by Sin, when he lost his footing in a turn near the end of the 14-lap race, sliding into the padded boards.