Skater banned from training with team amid investigation
South Korea’s two-time Olympic short track gold medalist Shim Suk-hee has been barred from training with the national team in an investigation into the text messages she sent during the 2018 Games suggesting she may have intended to defeat a teammate.
An online diary last week revealed messages exchanged between Shim and a coach during the Games, in which she ridiculed her teammate Choi Min-jeong and said she might try to create a “female Steven Bradbury” if things didn’t. did not go in his direction.
Bradbury won gold for Australia in the men’s 1,000 meters at the 2002 Olympic Winter Games after all other competitors crashed on the last corner.
In the 2018 women’s 1000m final in Pyeongchang, Shim and Choi got tangled up and fell on the last turn with Shim disqualified and Choi finishing fourth.
The Yonhap News Agency reported on Monday that the Korea Skating Union (KSU) was planning to investigate the existence of any intention on Shim’s part.
The report says KSU “separated” her from the national team at a training facility in central Jincheon, where they are preparing for qualifying for the 2022 Beijing Winter Games.
Shim will not be able to compete in the International Skating Union Short Track Speed Skating World Cup, which is due to start in Beijing on October 21 and sets quotas for the next Olympics, according to the report.
“We concluded after consulting with the athletes, including Shim herself, and the coaches that it would be difficult to train together in this situation,” said a KSU official.
The KSU was not immediately available for comment.