South Koreans file complaint over Adelina Sotnikova’s win at Olympics

Officials from Silver medalist Yuna Kim's (left) native South Korea have filed a complaint on the controversial ruling that gave Russia's Adelina Sotnikova (middle) the gold medal in women's figure skating.

A hometown crowd filled Iceberg Skating Palace with cheers when Russia’s Adelina Sotnikova won a surprise gold medal in women’s figure skating at the 2014 Sochi Olympics.

But more than a few neutral observers questioned whether Sotnikova had truly outskated defending champion Yuna Kim and now officials from her native South Korea are asking the international skating federation to take another look.


"Together with the Korea Skating Union, we have decided to file an official complaint [to the ISU] over the controversial ruling and will demand the body look into the makeup of the judging panel and whether a fair judgment was possible," a Korea Olympic Committee official told the Korea Times on Friday.

Sotnikova was credited with attempting a more challenging free skate as she came from behind to secure the victory.

But Kim performed a cleaner program, leading to skepticism about the scoring.

One member of the judges panel was a Russian woman who is married to the head of her country’s figure skating governing body. Another member, a Ukrainian, had once been suspended for attempting to fix the scoring of the ice dancing event at the 1998 Nagano Olympics.

(See a GIF of the judge, Alla Shekhovtseva, hugging her countrywoman Sotnikova minutes after the gold-medal ruling)

–David Wharton