Worthy Victor An races to 1,000m short track title
Russia's Victor An won the first Olympic gold medal for Russia in short track in Olympic history as he stormed to victory in the men's 1,000m in front of 12,000 spectators at Sochi’s Iceberg Skating Palace.
An produced a faultless display to cross the finish line in a time of 1 minute 25.325 seconds. His fellow Russian Vladimir Grigorev won silver, with Sjinkie Knegt of the Netherlands finishing third for the bronze.
An's victory marked a triumphant return to the Olympic stage following an eight-year absence.
At Turin 2006, then representing Republic of Korea, he had dominated the men’s short-track events, winning individual gold over 1,000m and 1,500m, before helping the Korean quartet take the 5,000m relay title, as well as an individual bronze in the 500m.
Canada's Charles Hamelin, who had won the 1,500m, went out in the quarter-finals, while Republic of Korea's 2013 world champion Sin Da-Woon was disqualified in the final.
“My right blade slipped a bit around the corner. I was about to do a pass and the ice just broke under my blades," explained Hamelin.
“I think it's the biggest disappointment of my Games,” added the Canadian.
“It was my distance and I wanted to win a medal at this distance. But I fell on my own and I need to focus now on the next race.”