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Korea Posts Best Showing in Winter Olympics

Posted March. 01, 2010 09:27,   


The Vancouver Winter Olympics has proven to be Korea’s greatest showing in the quadrennial sports gala.

Korea yesterday ranked fifth in the medal tally with six gold, six silver and two bronze a day ahead of the event’s finale. The country topped its sixth-place showing at the 1994 Winter Olympics in Lillehammer, Norway.

Moreover, Korea also did better this year than it did in the 2006 Turin Olympics Games (six gold, three silver, and two bronze). Korea ranked fourth in medals at the Seoul Summer Olympics in 1988, so the Vancouver Winter Olympics has been its finest showing as an Olympics overseas.

This year, Korea won medals in events other than short track, its traditional strength in winter sports. It produced gold medalists in figure skating and speed skating, and along with wins in short track, captured a “triple crown” in skating for the first time.

Korea`s speedskating had been considered a weakling due to disadvantageous physical conditions and a poor skating environment, but has shown it can compete with the world’s best.

The most celebrated Korean Olympian is Kim Yu-na. She set world records in the short program, free skating and combined score in succession, earning a flurry of praise for her amazing performance.

Korean skating also got a huge boost from young competitors in their 20s dubbed the “Vancouver generation.” Korean gold medalists had an average age of 21 in this year’s Olympics.

Their achievements at the Vancouver Winter Olympics will likely add momentum to Pyeongchang’s bid to host the 2018 Winter Olympics.