The 2019/20 season features the arrival of a brand-new competition – the ISU Four Continents Short Track Speed Skating Championships. The event gathers together the best racers from the Americas and Asia to fight it out for the titles: it’s essentially the rest of the world’s answer to the ISU European Short Track Speed Skating Championships.
Team Canada at the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating (ITA) 2019©International Skating Union (ISU)
Taking place from January 11-12 at Montreal’s famous Maurice Richard Arena, which hosted an ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating event earlier in the season, it will be a chance for Canada’s Steven Dubois, Charles Hamelin, Claudia Gagnon, Danae Blais and Alyson Charles to steal the show on home ice. They all supremely capable and it seems inevitable that Canada will have something to celebrate at this event’s debut, even though, this year’s foremost skater Kim Boutin will not participate.
It remains likely, however, that the Republic of Korea will emerge with the most medals overall. Korea have been superb again this year, with medals spread among one of their strongest squads ever.
Hwang Dae Heon (KOR) at the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating (USA) 2019©International Skating Union (ISU)
Hwang Dae Heon started the season brilliantly in the Men’s field, picking up three ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating golds across the first two events of the season, while Park Ji Won was lightning fast as he took gold in the 1000m and 1500m (2) in Nagoya. Newcomer Park In Wook also appears in Montreal, having collected multiple medals already this season.
Kim Ji Yoo (KOR) at the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating (JPN) 2019©International Skating Union (ISU)
Kim Ji Yoo has been consistent in the Ladies’, winning the 1500m in Montreal and Nagoya, No Ah Reum won the 1000m in style in Nagoya, while Kim Alang took 1500m gold in Shanghai. With Choi Min Jeong yet to hit form, she is still a formidable opponent not to be underestimated.
An Kai (CHN) at the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating (JPN) 2019©International Skating Union (ISU)
China will be hoping to prove that they can disrupt their Asian rivals at this tournament, however. While some of their biggest stars will miss out, An Kai does compete, and has looked powerful of late, picking up a medal of each colour already this season.
Kristen Santos (USA) at the ISU World Cup Short Track Speed Skating (ITA) 2019©International Skating Union (ISU)
Can any other nations beyond the big three of Canada, Korea and China make it on to the podium? Japan’s racers have been quietly getting into the mix this season, while the likes of Kristen Santos have given renewed hope to USA’s Short Track Speed Skating fans: perhaps her Relay chemistry with Maame Biney, Julie Letai and Corinne Stoddard provides the most likely route to an outsider victory.
Where to watch and follow the ISU Four Continents Short Track Speed Skating Championships?
Viewers will be able to watch via their national broadcaster/channel and for countries where there are no broadcasters, the ISU will offer a live stream on the Skating ISU YouTube Channel. You will find the full list in the “Where to Watch” news here.
Subscribe to the ISU Newsletter to receive the latest information and the “Where to Watch” news. You can also subscribe to the Skating ISU YouTube Channel to receive notifications when live streams start or new videos are published.
Highlights, clips, interviews, behind the scenes:
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For further information on ISU Short Track Speed Skating visit: isu.org/short-track.