Kim Boutin wins Olympic short-track bronze in speed skating
Teammate Marianne St-Gelais disqualified in an earlier race, did not make the final
By Pete Evans, CBC Sports
Canadian speed skater Kim Boutin has won a bronze medal in the women's short-track event at the Pyeongchang Olympics.
The 500-metre race ended in a photo finish between Italy's Arianna Fontana and South Korea's Minjeong Choi. After the race, judges determined that Choi had impeded Fontana, so she was disqualified.
That meant Boutin, who had crossed the line in fourth, was bumped up to third, and third-place finisher Yara Van Kerkhof of the Netherlands got bumped up to silver.
"It's just unbelievable right now," she told the CBC after the race. "I don't really believe what happened."
WATCH: Kim Boutin ecstatic after capturing bronze:
She has now earned a bronze in her first Olympics, and her Games experience isn't over yet — she'll race again in the 1,000 and the 1,500, as well as with her Canadian teammates in the 3,000-metre relay later this week.
"It's a good beginning and I want to continue like that," Boutin said.
The medal capped what started out as a disappointing day for the Canadian short-track team.
Veteran Canadian skater Marianne St-Gelais was a podium hopeful in the same event, but was disqualified in an earlier heat after it was deemed she had interfered with another skater.
"I wasn't ready for that call," St-Gelais told the CBC after the race. "I don't think I deserved it, but that's short track."
VIDEO: Marianne St-Gelais disappointed after DQ:
"It just hurts," St-Gelais said, adding that she wants to move on and focus on her next races, the 1,000, the 1,500, as well as 3,000-metre relay.
St-Gelais didn't let her own disappointment stop her from cheering on teammate Boutin, however. The veteran St-Gelais was the first to greet the Olympic rookie with a big hug once it became clear Boutin had been bumped up to third.
"I know she wanted to be there," Boutin said with tears in her eyes, "At the beginning of my race she said 'OK, Kim, go reach the medal you deserve.'"
"To be there after my race, wow," Boutin said. "I don't how an athlete can do that for another."
Canadian men move on
On the men's side, no medals were handed out, but Canadians largely moved on to skate again.
Charles Hamelin, who is trying to win two medals to become Canada's most decorated winter Olympian at these Winter Games, set an Olympic record time of one minute 23:407 seconds in his heat to qualify for the quarter-finals in the men's 1,000.
His teammate, Samuel Girard, also moved on, after finishing second in his heat.
A third Canadian, Charle Cournoyer, was eliminated after ending up third in his heat in a photo finish.
The three Canadian men also teamed up with fellow Canadian Pascal Dion in the 5,000-metre relay, advancing to the finals set for later in the week.