Nineteen current and former U.S. speedskaters have band together and will request arbitration to expedite the dismissal of short track coach Jae Su Chun, who the team members filed a code of conduct complaint against with U.S. Speedskating (USS) and the USOC for “unchecked abuse.”
The complain alleges a number of incidents involving Chun, including shoving one skater into a wall and repeatedly hitting him, as well as throwing bottles, chairs, binders, and equipment, and calling female athletes “fat,” and “disgusting.” Chun acknowledged the allegations, but claimed he was innocent in a translated statement released Monday.
The athletes are hoping to have Chun, who was put on administrative leave Sunday, and assistants Jun Hyung Yeo and Jimmy Jang removed before the 2012-13 World Cup team is selected on Sept. 30, since World Cup points are directly related to how speedskaters qualify for the Olympics.
However Yeo wasn’t suspended and will step in as interim coach in the meantime, which apparently doesn’t satisfy the skaters’ request.
“The athletes we represent have made known that they will not represent the United States in the upcoming World Cup international competitions if made to participate on a team on which coach Jae Su and/or his two assistant coaches are members, as coaches or in any other capacity,” Edward Williams, the attorney for the skaters, said Monday.
USS communications director, Tamara Castellano, said during a Monday conference call that the governing body hopes to have the investigation done in time for the team trials on Sept. 27 in Salt Lake City.
Fenway Park will host some of the world’s best freeskiers in the one-of-a-kind Big Air at Fenway, live on NBC Sports Live Extra on Friday night.
Big air skiers will descend from a ramp that’s four times higher than the Green Monster inside the hallowed Boston Red Sox home.
Ski big air is most like slopestyle of the current Olympic disciplines, except skiers get one jump per run.
WATCH LIVE: Big Air at Fenway — 8:30 p.m. ET
On Thursday, Canadian Max Parrot and American Julia Marino won the snowboard big air competitions at Fenway Park.
Big Air at Fenway coverage will conclude with an NBC show on Saturday at 5 p.m. ET.
MORE: Olympic champ suffers concussion at Big Air at Fenway practice
In an homage to the Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympics, Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway lit the Lillehammer Youth Winter Olympic cauldron to cap the Opening Ceremony on Friday night.
The princess’ father, Crown Prince Haakon, lit the 1994 Olympic cauldron in a very similar fashion (video here). Princess Ingrid Alexandra was born in 2004.
The Opening Ceremony, held outdoors at a ski jump (same venue as 1994) in sub-freezing temperatures, included a speech from International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach.
“I’m just a little bit too old to compete in the YOG,” Bach said, urging listeners to use the hashtag #IloveYOG during the nine-day Winter Games.
The ceremony included Olympic legends, such as 2010 figure skating gold medalist Yuna Kim and eight-time Olympic cross-country champion Bjorn Daehlie carrying the Olympic flag.
Marit Bjoergen, a 10-time Olympic medalist cross-country skier, handed the Olympic flame to the princess.
NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra will air coverage of the Opening Ceremony on Saturday at 12:30 a.m. ET, plus daily coverage throughout the Winter Games. A full broadcast schedule is here.
MORE: Two years to Pyeongchang: Updates on U.S. Olympic medalists from Sochi