The national short track team separated Shim Seok-hee (24, Seoul City Hall), who was embroiled in a controversy over demeaning her teammates during the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.
An ice skating federation official said on the 11th, “After consulting with the national team players and coaches including Shim Suk-hee, we have come to the conclusion that it is difficult to train together in the current atmosphere. Shim Seok-hee came out of the Jincheon Athlete’s Village as a separation measure for the psychological stability of the players.” “From next week, the International Skating Union (ISU) Short Track World Cup Series will start. It has become virtually difficult for Shim Suk-hee to participate in the World Cup series,” he added. The short track World Cup series will start with the first competition to be held in Beijing, China from the 21st to the 24th, and will continue until next year. The national team is scheduled to depart on the 17th to participate in the first tournament. The national team excluded Shim Suk-hee from the World Cup roster as it was difficult to play with colleagues in the current atmosphere as not only individual events but also team events (relay) are held at the World Cup.
The controversy arose when the contents of the “attorney’s opinion” submitted to the court by former national team coach Cho Jae-beom, who was handed over to trial on charges of committing a sex crime against Shim Suk-hee for over three years, were revealed through a media outlet. Cho was sentenced to 10 years and 6 months in prison in the first trial in January of this year, and was sentenced to 13 years in prison after the sentence was increased at the appeals court last month.
The ‘Attorney’s Opinion’ contains private text messages presumed to have been exchanged between Shim Suk-hee and the national team coach A during the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.
The content of the message contained profanity towards the national short track athletes Choi Min-jeong (23, Seongnam City Hall) and Kim A-rang (26, Goyang City Hall), and about Choi Min-jung, “If it doesn’t seem like it, then we should make a female Bradbury”. . Steven Bradbury, an Australian short track speed skater who won the gold medal in the men’s 1000m short track at the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, 2002. .
Shim Suk-hee and Choi Min-jung were in a clash in the women’s 1000m short track speed skating finals at the Pyeongchang Olympics held on February 22, 2018, so Shim Suk-hee is being questioned as to whether she was intentional or not. At that time, in the process of Choi Min-jung hitting the outside on the last lap, Shim Suk-hee and Shim Suk-hee, who was running ahead, got tangled in the corner and slipped and fell. In the end, Shim Seok-hee was penalized and disqualified, and Choi Min-jeong was pushed to 4th place and both players failed to obtain medals. However, since Bradbury is the gold medalist, it can be interpreted differently, and it has not been confirmed whether it was intentional or not.
As it is essential for the national team to normalize in preparation for the Olympics, the Ice Skating Federation is planning to set up an investigation committee as soon as possible to look into the facts of the incident. An ice skating federation official also said, “Nothing has been decided yet. Once an investigation committee is formed, we will review the scope of what information will be investigated.”
Meanwhile, Shim Suk-hee apologized to the coaching staff of the national team, including Kim A-rang and Choi Min-jung, who were named in the leaked message while announcing a statement through her agency. Shim Seok-hee said, “I sincerely apologize for disappointing and hurting many people due to my immature attitude and words and actions.” . Regarding ‘Bradbury’s mention’, he said, “The part that I wrote as if I fell on purpose is not true at all.” He said, “Both me and Choi Min-jung specialize in the method of overtaking opponents through the out course and making last-minute spurs. In the process, an unfortunate clash arose.”
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