Host City: Salt Lake City, United States
Venue(s): Salt Lake Ice Center, Salt Lake City, Utah
Date Started: February 20, 2002
Date Finished: February 20, 2002
Format: Placements 1-12 based on final and B final. Deeper placements based on points earned in earlier rounds, and time in final round skated.
|Gold:||Apolo Anton Ohno|
After the hilarious finish of the 1,000 m, the second final of the men's short track competitions again gave plenty to discuss. The field for the final contained most of the favorites: Japanese American teenager Apolo Anton Ohno, four-time World Champion Marc Gagnon of Canada, Kim Dong-Seong, the 1998 winner of the 1,000 m and four-fold European Champion Fabio Carta (Italy).
Halfway through the race, Kim kicked up the pace and took the lead. Ohno, meanwhile, remained in the back of the field for much of the race, emerging only with two laps to go. He first moved up to second place behind Kim. In the final lap, he then attempted to pass the South Korean on the inside. The two briefly touched, and Ohno waived his hands in the air signaling obstruction. Both continued to the finish line in full speed, the Korean seemingly taking the gold. But while Kim skated around with the Korean flag, it was announced that Kim was disqualified for cross-tracking, for obstructing Ohno who was trying to pass him. The call left Kim in disbelief on the ice, while Ohno ecstatically celebrated his victory with the crowd.
Disputed disqualifications are not uncommon in short track, and naturally one deciding the Olympic gold was hotly disputed. The referee's decision fell badly with South Koreans, and Ohno and the IOC received thousands of e-mails and letters, some even containing death threats. Ohno was assigned body guards because of this, and still needs protection when competing in South Korea, where short track speed skating is a major sport. The impact of the decision was visible during the 2002 Football World Cup, held in South Korea and Japan. When Ahn Jung-Hwan scored the equaliser in a match between South Korea and the US, he celebrated his goal by making skating moves, later explaining the reference to Kim's disqualification. Kim himself would bounce back in the best way possible. At the 2002 World Championships, after the Games, he won all four distances and the overall title - an unprecedented performance.
|1||Apolo Anton Ohno||19||United States||USA||Gold|
|6||Rusty Smith||22||United States||USA|
|12||Kim Dong-Seong||22||South Korea||KOR||68||DQ|
|13||Viktor An||16||South Korea||KOR||34||2:23.287|
|17||Nicky Gooch||29||Great Britain||GBR||18||2:25.903|
|20||Mark Jackson||21||New Zealand||NZL||8||2:22.906|
|22||Leon Flack||21||Great Britain||GBR||8||2:25.832|
|AC||Simon Van Vossel||22||Belgium||BEL||DQ|