Short Track Speed Skating at PyeongChang 2018

Venues: Gangneung Ice Arena

Competition Dates: February 10, 13, 17, 20, 22 (Days 1, 4, 8, 11, 13)

Events: 8 (4 men, 4 women)

Short track speed skating takes place on a 111.12m oval which is marked on an international-sized ice rink. The smaller oval means there are tighter turns and shorter straightaways than in long track. There are eight events on the Olympic program.

In the 500m (4 ½ laps) and the 1000m (9 laps) there are four rounds of competition (heats, quarterfinals, semi-finals, finals) in which there are usually four skaters racing at a time.

Marianne St-Gelais leads in the women's 500m at the short track World Cup in Calgary on Nov. 5 2016.

With 13 and a half laps, the 1500m is the most strategic of the individual events. There are three rounds of competition (heats, semi-finals, finals) in which there are usually six skaters racing at a time.

Charles Hamelin, second from left, of Canada, competes against Seo Yi Ra, left, of South Korea, Samuel Girard, second from right, of Canada and Wu Dajing, right, of China during the men's 1000 meter final race at the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating competition in Seoul, South Korea, Sunday, March 13, 2016. Hamelin finished the race while Girard took second and Wu third. (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon)

In the men’s 5000m relay (45 laps) and women’s 3000m relay (27 laps), teams compete with four skaters each and there are four teams on the ice at a time. Instead of a baton, the exchange between teammates is made by pushing the next skater to maintain momentum and movement. Skaters will race one to two laps before making an exchange. In the event of a fall, a covering skater may tag the fallen skater and continue the race.

Men's 5,000m relay (Vancouver 2010)

Canadian History (Pre-PyeongChang 2018)

Short track speed skating has only been on the Olympic program since Albertville 1992, but it is already Canada’s second-most successful winter sport with 28 medals won.

Canada’s best Games were at Salt Lake City 2002, where six medals were won. Marc Gagnon contributed three of those, highlighted by his gold medal in the 500m as he shared the podium with silver medal-winning teammate Jonathan Guilmette. The duo also won gold as members of the 5000m relay. Gagnon added a bronze medal in the 1500m. He ended his career as one of Canada’s most decorated Olympians with five medals, having previously won 1000m bronze at Lillehammer 1994 and relay gold at Nagano 1998.


Also on the most decorated list is François-Louis Tremblay, who won the first of his five Olympic medals as a member of the relay in Salt Lake City. He won relay medals at the next two Games, where he also stood on the podium in the 500m, winning silver at Turin 2006 and bronze at Vancouver 2010.

At Sochi 2014, Charles Hamelin won his third career Olympic gold medal when he finished first in the 1500m. Four years earlier he’d won gold in the 500m and as a member of the 5000m relay. Charle Cournoyer won bronze in Sochi for Canada’s sixth all-time medal in the 500m.

Speed Skating - Short Track - Men's

Canada has never missed the podium in the women’s 3000m relay, starting with a gold medal at Albertville 1992. Four silver and two bronze have been won since then. Tania Vicent was a member of four of those teams, making her Canada’s most decorated female short tracker. The only Canadian woman to win individual gold was Annie Perreault in the 500m at Nagano 1998.

At Sochi 2014, Marianne St-Gelais won silver with the 3000m relay for her third career medal, adding to the relay silver and 500m silver she won at Vancouver 2010.