Goulet-Nadon wins silver medal at short track worlds

Amélie Goulet-Nadon of Laval, Que., won the silver medal Saturday in the women’s 500-metres at the world short track speed skating championships while China took the spotlight winning four of the six medals.

Olympic champion Yang Yang of China, back on ice after a knee injury last month at the Asian Games, earned the gold in 46.270 seconds. Goulet-Nadon, a triple World Cup champion this season including the 500 title, was second in 46.314 while Tianyu Fu of China was third in 46.319.

The race was basically decided at the start when Goulet-Nadon and Yang battled to gain the lead.

‘’She put out her arm to prevent me from passing her when the race started and I thought that was a bit much,’’ said Goulet-Nadon, 20. ‘’I tried to pass her right away on the first turn but I didn’t feel I had enough speed to get by. I didn’t want to take any chances and then lose my second place. I guess I was cautious today.’’

Alanna Kraus of Abbotsford, B.C., was eliminated in the semifinal and placed sixth while Tania Vicent of Montreal bowed out in the quarterfinals for 12th spot.

In the overall standings after two of four events, Yang, the defending champion, sits first at 47 point followed by Eun-Kyung Choi of South Korea at 34 and Goulet-Nadon at 21. Kraus is eighth and Vicent 10th.

In the men’s 500, Jiajun Li led China to a 1-2 finish clocking 43.210 to successfully defend his title. Ye Li was second in 43.291 and Suk-Woo Song of South Korea third in 43.377 for his second medal in two days.

World Cup 500 champion Jean-François Monette of Pointe-aux-Trembles, Que., was fourth in 43.416, Apolo Anton Ohno of the U.S., fifth in 44.038 and Jonathan Guilmette of Montreal, the Olympic silver medalist, fell in the first lap and was sixth in 56.032. Usually in a 500, there are four racers per round but disqualifications and interferences in the semifinals allowed two more entries in the final.

‘’There was little room to maneuver and no opportunities to pass in the final,’’ said Monette, competing at his first world championships. ‘’Usually I have a much better start in the 500 and I definitely needed to get to the front early in the race.’’

Jeff Scholten of Fredericton was eliminated in the quarter finals for 11th.

After two of four races, Song, Li and Hyun-Soo Ahn of South Korea are atop the overall standings with 34 points. Monette is sixth, Guilmette eighth and Scholten ninth.

In the men’s 5,000-metre relay semifinal, Canada qualified for the final finishing second to South Korea in its heat. The Koreans clocked 7:03.700 while Canada with Scholten, Guilmette, Éric Bédard of Ste-Thècle, Que., and Mathieu Turcotte of Sherbrooke, Que., were second in 7:04.486.

China and Italy were 1-2 in the other semi to also qualify for the final. Canada has won the last two men’s Olympic relay titles but hasn’t earned relay gold at the worlds since 1998.