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| Event type

Skeleton, Men

Date15 – 16 February 2018
StatusOlympic
LocationOlympic Sliding Centre, Alpensia Resort, Mountain Cluster, Daegwallyeong
Participants30 from 20 countries
FormatFour runs, total time determined placement. Top 20 after three runs qualified for final run.
Venue detailsCurves: 16
Length: 1,376 m
Start Altitude: 930 m
Vertical Drop: 80 m

In the interval between Olympics three men had dominated the world of men’s skeleton. Martins Dukurs of Latvia had won all three World Championship golds between 2015 and 2017, all three World Cup titles, and two thirds of all World Cup races during that period. Reigning Olympic champion Aleksandr Tretyakov had been a regular podium finisher (and occasional winner when not injured) and Korean sensation Yun Seong-Bin had learnt to improve his driving skills to match his powerful starting technique

The beginning of the 2017-18 season saw a shift in power towards the Korean as Yong, for the first time, went on a winning streak despite having devoted himself to regular sessions on the PyeongChang Olympic track. He won the World Cup so comfortably that he could afford to skip the final round for more practice back in Korea.

Tretyakov didn’t even make the start line in PyeongChang. On 22 November 2017 the IOC disqualified him from the 2014 Winter Games, stripped him of his title and imposed on him a lifetime ban from ever competing again at the Olympic Games for his part in the doping scandal that engulfed the Sochi Games. A week before the PyeongChang Games were due to begin the Court of Arbitration for Sport overturned this decision and returned his Olympic gold to him, citing a lack of evidence against him as an individual. CAS also removed his ban only for him to be refused a chance to defend his title as he didn’t comply with the regulations needed to perform as an “Olympic Athlete from Russia”.

Yong did not disappoint his fans at the Games. He set a track record on first run then took another quarter of a second off that time at his next attempt. At halfway he led the Russian Nikita Tregubov by .74 of a second with Martins Dukurs back in third. The Korean continued to be blisteringly fast on the second day of competition and came desperately close to breaking the 50 second barrier on his final run. In the end he had a record-breaking margin of 1.63 seconds and achieved the rare feats of both setting the fastest times on each run and recording the four fastest runs of the entire competition.

Martins Dukurs had looked likely to finish in second place for the third Games in a row but a poor final run saw him slump to fourth place. The beneficiaries were Tregubov, who win the silver in his capacity as an “Olympic Athlete from Russia” and Great Britain’s Dom Parsons who took the bronze. Neither man had ever placed higher at a World Cup event.

Yong was the first competitor from outside Europe and North America to win an Olympic sliding medal, and the first athlete from South Korea to win a Winter Olympic medal in a non-skating event.

North America, which had provided at least one medallist at every previous Winter Olympic men’s skeleton had a poor Games and failed to place anyone inside the top 10. In anticipation of 2022 there was a first Olympic entrant from China and both Israel and Jamaica were present in the event for the first time. Also making headlines in PyeongChang was the Dutch based former sprinter Akwasi Frimpong who became the first African to contest an Olympic skeleton race.

PosNrSliderNOCTimeRun 1Run 2Run 3Run 4
16Yun Seong-BinKOR3:20.5550.28 (1)50.07 (1)50.18 (1)50.02 (1)Gold
210Nikita TregubovROC3:22.1850.59 (2)50.50 (4)50.53 (5)50.56 (2)Silver
316Dom ParsonsGBR3:22.2050.85 (=5)50.41 (3)50.33 (3)50.61 (3)Bronze
49Martins DukursLAT3:22.3150.85 (=5)50.38 (2)50.32 (2)50.76 (5)
58Tomass DukursLAT3:22.7450.88 (7)50.58 (5)50.65 (=6)50.63 (4)
623Kim Ji-SuKOR3:22.9850.80 (4)50.86 (6)50.51 (4)50.81 (6)
77Axel JungkGER3:23.6050.77 (3)51.01 (9)50.83 (8)50.99 (=10)
811Christopher GrotheerGER3:24.0551.05 (=9)51.06 (11)51.01 (10)50.93 (=8)
912Alexander GassnerGER3:24.1051.05 (=9)51.08 (12)51.04 (=11)50.93 (=8)
1021Jerry RiceGBR3:24.2451.06 (11)51.15 (=13)51.04 (=11)50.99 (=10)
1113Matt AntoineUSA3:24.3951.16 (12)50.98 (8)50.91 (9)51.34 (14)
1226Vlad HeraskevychUKR3:24.4751.26 (14)51.16 (15)51.21 (17)50.84 (7)
1324Geng WenqiangCHN3:24.6551.51 (19)50.87 (7)51.18 (15)51.09 (12)
1420Rhys ThornburyNZL3:24.7250.90 (8)51.03 (10)50.65 (=6)52.14 (20)
1517Vlad MarchenkovROC3:25.1851.27 (15)51.49 (20)51.05 (13)51.37 (15)
1618John DalyUSA3:25.3551.23 (13)51.15 (=13)51.33 (18)51.64 (19)
1719Kevin BoyerCAN3:25.4051.46 (18)51.24 (16)51.14 (14)51.56 (17)
1814Matthias GuggenbergerAUT3:25.7351.38 (16)51.29 (17)51.81 (25)51.25 (13)
1927John FarrowAUS3:25.8851.64 (=21)51.31 (=18)51.40 (20)51.53 (16)
203Alex HanssenNOR3:25.8951.44 (17)51.51 (=22)51.37 (19)51.57 (18)
2115Dave GreszczyszynCAN2:34.6151.73 (23)51.31 (=18)51.57 (21)
2225Hiroatsu TakahashiJPN2:34.6952.00 (27)51.50 (21)51.19 (16)
234Ander MirambellESP2:35.2951.64 (=21)52.06 (26)51.59 (22)
2422Barrett MartineauCAN2:35.4051.94 (26)51.76 (24)51.70 (23)
252Dorin VelicuROU2:35.4451.91 (25)51.51 (=22)52.02 (27)
2628Katsuyuki MiyajimaJPN2:35.5851.63 (20)52.15 (27)51.80 (24)
2729Joe CecchiniITA2:35.6451.88 (24)51.80 (25)51.96 (26)
2830A. J. EdelmanISR2:37.2652.48 (28)52.43 (28)52.35 (28)
291Anthony WatsonJAM2:40.5253.13 (29)54.04 (29)53.35 (29)
305Akwasi FrimpongGHA2:42.1253.97 (30)54.46 (30)53.69 (30)