In Brief

Winter Olympics: Team GB skater Elise Christie crashes out in 500m final

Japan’s Kei Saito fails drugs test and is the first athlete to be sent home from PyeongChang 2018

Elise Christie crashes out in 500m final

Team GB star Elise Christie suffered a “crushing blow” in her hopes to win an Olympic medal after crashing out in the 500m short-track speed skating final.

Italy’s Arianna Fontana secured gold but there was controversy on the rink after South Korean favourite Choi Min-jeong was penalised. Yara van Kerkhof of the Netherlands moved into the silver medal position with Kim Boutin of Canada in bronze.

Christie won the quarter-final in an Olympic record time and was one of the favourites for the final. But after missing out on three medals in Sochi four years ago it was not to be in the 500m. The 27-year-old has two more attempts at winning an Olympic medal as she also competes in the 1,000m and 1,500m events in PyeongChang.

After finishing fourth in the 500m final, Christie said: “It’s obviously really hard to explain. I’ve worked so hard for that moment out there and I got knocked over.

“It’s so out of my control but almost that feels worse – at least I can go home and think I didn’t make any mistakes but it still sucks. I got hit and I couldn’t hold it. I tried my best to hold the corner but we’re going quite fast on these tiny blades and you can’t always hold it and when I went down I knew it was over because I knew they would only penalise one person.

“Hopefully I can come back again. I can reset and it’s almost a week until my best distance [1,000m].”

Speaking on the BBC, three-time Olympic short track speed skater Sarah Lindsay said: “Elise Christie always said she would risk everything. She has tried her best but today wasn’t her day. She still has two distances to go and they are her favourites. I’m sure she will be able to turn things around. Arianna Fontana has won silver so this was the last thing left for her as well. You could see the shots of her crying. This means so much to her as well.”

Japanese skater fails drugs test

The Guardian reports that Japanese short track speed skater Kei Saito has become the first athlete at PyeongChang 2018 to be suspended for failing a drugs test. The 21-year-old has accepted a provisional suspension, says the Guardian, after signs of acetalozamide showed up in an out-of-competition test. Acetalozamide is a masking agent and is used as a diuretic. After leaving the Olympic Village Saito vowed to “fight” any potential sanction.

Teenage snowboard star Chloe Kim wins gold

American snowboard star Chloe Kim, 17, has won the gold medal in the women’s halfpipe. Kim’s parents are South Korean so the victory in their home country is even sweeter for the teenager. Quoted by the BBC, Kim said: “There was a lot of pressure, but I’m happy I was able to do it here and do it for the fans and the family. I’m so happy I was able to land and being here is so exciting, this has been a dream of mine.”

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