Host Nation Stunned on Last Day of Short Track Speedskating in Pyeongchang

A South Korean speedskater fell in the men's 5,000m final, opening the door for Hungary to win its first medal at any Winter Olympics

The final night of short track speedskating featured three finals, and South Korea had given itself the best chance possible to win all of them.

But the host nation was unable to equal its record of six short track gold medals, set at the 2006 Turin Games, as a dominant performance in the men's 500m won gold for China and disastrous crashes took the South Korean skaters out of contention in the women's 1000m final and men's 5000m relay.

MEN'S 500M
Chinese speedskater Wu Dajing shot into the lead of the five-lap 500m race, and wouldn't give it up, finishing first with a comfortable distance betwen him and the two South Korean skaters jockeying for second and third. Hwang Daeheon took silver and Lim Hyo-jun took bronze, his secod medal of these Olympics.

Wu set a world record with his 39.584-second race. The Sochi silver medalist and finished first or second in the event in the last four world championships. 

Wu is the first Chinese man to win a short track gold medal at the Olympics, and his gold is China's first of the 2018 Winter Olympics.

South Korea had two skaters in the finals: Choi Min-jeong and Shim Suk-hee. 

Choi was looking for her third gold at these Games -- she won the 1500m and the 3000m relay -- and she was the world champion of the 1000m in 2015 and 2016. 

But she and Shim were in the last of five places in the final before a collision took them both down. Suzanne Schulting of the Netherlands won, followed by Kim Boutin of Canada and Arianna Fontana of Italy. Shim was penalized for tripping up Choi.

Fontana's bronze is her eighth medal, which puts her in a tie for most short track speedskating medals in Olympic history with American Apolo Ohno and South Korean-Russian Viktor Ahn. Fontana also won a gold and silver in Pyeongchang.

The results end a period of dominance for South Korea and China, which had won 16 of 18 medals since the women's 1000m made its debut in 1994. 

The race was out of South Korea's hands nearly before it began, as Kwak Yoon-Gy fell with 23 laps to go.

The hosts had been seeded first, but ended up trying — and failing — to make up nearly a lap on the other three teams.

Hungary came from behind in the final laps to take the lead, edging China at the line. Canada, historically the event's most dominant team, won bronze.

It's Hungary's first gold medal at any Winter Olympics, and their first medal in winter since the 1980 Lake Placid Games. Star skater Sandor Liu Shaolin raced over to the sideline to embrace his wife, British speedskating star Elise Christie, who was injured earlier in the Olympics.

Team USA won the B group final, but didn't get a medal for lack of any penalties on the teams in the A final.

Copyright NBC Olympics - Pyeongchang
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