The famous speed skater from South Korea, Lee Sang-hwa won the gold medal in the women’s 500 meters at the Sochi Winter Games on February 11, 2014. Taking into consideration two races at Adler Arena Skating Center, Lee got a combined time of 74.70 seconds, which is a new Olympic record and was 0.36 seconds faster than the runner up, Russia’s Olga Fatkulina.

Lee Sang-hwa of South Korea waves after winning the women's 500 meters speed skating event during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics

Margot Boer of the Netherlands rounded up the top three and won the bronze medal with 75.48 seconds combined. Lee ranked first in the opening race with 37.42 seconds and also set the Olympic record with 37.28 seconds in the second race, which was smoothly the fastest time in the field.

The speed skater is also the world record-holder in the 500 m with 36.36 seconds and managed to join the likes of Bonnie Blair from the United States and Catriona Le May Doan from Canada as the only skaters to repeat their successes as the Olympic gold medalists in the women’s 500 m.

In addition to that, Lee claimed the first medal for South Korea at the Winter Olympics held in Sochi. South Korea is looking to win four gold medals and to finish in the top ten when it comes to medal standings. However, the country kicked off the Games with a shaky start, as it went without winning any medals during the first three days of the competition.

Photo Credits: Reuters