Hungary’s history-making short track speed skating brothers seek new country

Liu Shaolin Sandor, Liu Shaoang
Getty
0 Comments

Brothers Liu Shaolin Sandor and Liu Shaoang, short track speed skaters who helped Hungary win its first Winter Olympic gold medals, want to start the process of changing nationality.

The brothers requested the consent of Hungary’s federation to switch countries, though they did not name the country, according to the federation. The brothers were born in Budapest to a Hungarian mother and a Chinese father and now train in China, according to the federation.

The brothers have not commented on the federation’s annoucement.

Any skater wishing to change countries must be granted a release from their original country and sit out competition for 12 months, according to the federation, citing International Skating Union rules.

The Hungarian federation said it will address the situation at its next board meeting.

After last season, the brothers followed the Hungarian national team coach, who returned to her home country of China to take its head coaching job. The Hungarian federation said the brothers trained with the Chinese national team while also receiving assistance from a Hungarian national team coach but did not find the situation suitable.

In 2018, the Liu brothers made up half of the Hungarian men’s 5000m relay team that won the nation’s first Winter Olympic gold medal.

This year, Liu Shaoang won the Olympic 500m to become the first Hungarian to win an individual Winter Olympic title. He then won the overall world title in April in the last international competition for either brother. Liu Shaolin Sandor did not compete at worlds.

Neither brother competed in the first two World Cups this season in Montreal and Salt Lake City the last two weeks.

Another Hungarian skater, 2018 U.S. Olympic silver medalist John-Henry Krueger, will no longer compete for the national team after an unspecified disciplinary situation, according to Hungarian media in July quoting a national team manager. Efforts to reach Krueger, who switched from the U.S. to Hungary after the 2018 Olympics at least in part for financial reasons, have been unsuccessful.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

Dutch break short track speed skating world records

Suzanne Schulting
Getty
0 Comments

Dutchwomen Suzanne Schulting and Xandra Velzeboer broke short track speed skating world records in the heats of a World Cup stop outside Salt Lake City on Friday.

Schulting, the two-time reigning Olympic 1000m champion, clocked 1 minute, 25.958 seconds at that distance.

That smashed her own record time of 1:26.514 from the Olympics in February, when she broke a 10-year-old world record and became the first woman to break an individual world record at the Olympics since 2010.

Velzeboer, part of the Dutch Olympic champion women’s relay team in February, broke the 500m sprint world record on Friday. The reigning world 500m champion skated 41.416 seconds, beating Canadian Kim Boutin‘s record of 41.936 set on the same ice in November 2019.

The 500m and 1000m finals are spread between Saturday and Sunday.

Now all of the men’s and women’s world records in individual Olympic distances (500m, 1000m, 1500m) are from the Utah Olympic Oval ice.

ON HER TURF: Kristen Santos-Griswold resets short track priorities, aims to handle ‘unfinished business’

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

South Korea’s first gold medalist of 2018 PyeongChang Olympics to compete for China

Lim Hyo-Jun
Getty
0 Comments

Lim Hyo-Jun, a short track speed skater who won South Korea’s first gold medal of the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics, has been cleared to skate for China and was reportedly named to the national team Monday.

Lim, who won the 1500m on the first day of medal competition at the PyeongChang Games, began the process of switching to China after a June 2019 incident where he pulled down a teammate’s trousers, leaving him standing, exposed, in front of female teammates.

Lim, the 2019 World overall champion, was banned from the team for a year and later found guilty of sexual harassment before the verdict was overturned on appeal.

It was reported in March 2021 that Lim was in the process of trying to gain Chinese nationality to compete at the Beijing Winter Olympics, but Lim was not cleared to switch by the International Skating Union until this July. His Chinese name is Lin Xiaojun.

Another star South Korean skater, triple 2006 Olympic gold medalist Ahn Hyun-Soo, switched to Russia after not making the 2010 Olympic team. He then won three golds for the host nation as Viktor Ahn at the 2014 Sochi Games.

China’s national team for the upcoming season reportedly does not include veterans Wu Dajing, the nation’s lone gold medalist across all sports at the 2018 Olympics, and Fan Kexin, a three-time Olympic medalist.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!