St-Gelais shines, Knegt breaks world record at ISU World Cup
KEARNS, Utah (AP) Canada's Marianne St-Gelais won the women's 500 meters at the ISU World Cup short-track speedskating event Sunday to close the weekend with three medals.
St-Gelais finished the 500 in 43.059 seconds, was second in the 1,500 on Saturday and was a member of Canada's bronze- medal 3,000 relay team Sunday. She was the benefactor of a crash involving Great Britain's Elise Christie, who set the world record in the quarterfinals and was leading before sliding into the wall and getting her right skate caught in the padding. Christie was helped to the locker room afterward.
''You don't want to win because of that, but you have to be aware because it's short track,'' said St-Gelais, who has three Olympic silver medals. ''You have to be smart. There's so many things you have to think about while you're skating. ... It's a gold, but it's not the way I wanted to have the gold, but it's still a gold.
''I'm really happy. I'm confident. We worked so hard this summer. ... I still want to have my gold medal at the Olympics, so I'm working hard for that.''
The weekend event finished with five world records and 49 national records.
South Korea's Choi Minjeong was second in the 500 in 43.244, followed by China's Kexin Fan (43.249).
Sjinkie Knegt of the Netherlands broke the men's world record in the 1,500 at 2:07.943. South Korea's Lee Jung-Su (2:08.646) was second and Russia's Semen Elistratov (2:08.655) third.
South Korea swept the women's 1,500, with Shim Suk Hee (2:22.384), Kim Jiyoo (2:22.837) and Noh Do Hee (2:22.954) finishing 1-2-3. All three joined Choi on the winning 3,000 relay team (4:05.149). Korea set the world record in the relay at 4:04.222 in the semifinal round Saturday.
American Katherine Reutter was in position to medal in the 1,500, but slipped and finished sixth in 2:30.695.
''I feel like I'm right below the threshold,'' said Reutter, the two-time Olympic medalist that came out of retirement this year. ''I don't know what it is that's got to click, but I know when I get there, the game's going to change. ... I know that moment is coming. I just have to take my medicine and wait for it to get there.
''I'm a little sad about today. Going into it I thought I was fifth last weekend, I was fifth yesterday and I'll be OK if I'm fifth today. I'd love to be fourth. I'd really love a medal. But incremental steps are OK. To actually get sixth, that hurt my feelings. That is what it is. ... I am very satisfied with where I am. ... Losing hurts, but we can learn from it and stay strong afterward.''
Kazakhstan's Abzal Azhgaliyev won the men's 500 in 40.373. China's Tianyu Han (40.419) was second, and Canada's Charles Hamelin (46.260) third.
China won the men's 5,000 relay.