The main field of Korean roller skating is definitely the speed sector.
Kwok Chai, who won two junior gold medals at the 2004 World Championships, gained popularity as an ‘inline ulzzang’ and public interest in roller skating began to increase.
From the mid to late 2000s, ‘Roller Queen’ Woo Hyo-sook dominated the international stage and made Korea a roller powerhouse.
When she was 17 years old, she became the first Korean roller to win a senior gold medal at the World Championships in 2003. Woo Hyo-sook won a gold medal at the 2010 Asian Games in Guangzhou, and in 2011, she won four gold medals at the World Championships and made her mark on the world stage.
With Woo Hyo-sook at the center, the Korean national team defeated Colombia, the world’s strongest team, at the 2009 World Championships and ranked first overall (15 gold, 15 silver, and 9 bronze), and also won three gold medals, two silver medals, and bronze medals at the Guangzhou Asian Games. It swept two titles and established itself as a ‘good-selling event.’
Inline Roller EP 10,000m Hyosook Woo
However, as the popularity of roller skating waned and the generational change in the national team was not smooth, the status of Korean rollers weakened significantly.
The national team finished the competition in 13th place overall at last year’s World Championships, earning a ‘no gold’ result with one silver medal and two bronze medals.
Because it is an unpopular sport, its presence in the Asian Games is limited.
It was first adopted as an official event at the 2010 Guangzhou Games, but was excluded from the 2014 Incheon Games, and at the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Games, it was drastically reduced to two 20,000m road events for men and women.
In this competition, it has been expanded to three specific events, including 1,000m sprint, 10,000m exclusion + point (EP), and 3,000m relay, but its existence is expected to be in jeopardy again at the Aichi-Nagoya Games to be held in 2026.메이저사이트
For this reason, the speed team is challenging the golden sprint with the desperate determination that this year may be its last appearance in the Asian Games.
At the forefront are Choi Kwang-ho (30, Daegu City Hall) and Jeong Cheol-won (27, Andong City Hall), who are competing in the men’s 1,000m.
While Choi Kwang-ho is a veteran who won two silver medals at the Asian Games alone, Jeong Cheol-won is a player whose skills have improved to the fullest as he competed for the championship at last year’s World Championships.
Kwang-ho Choi won a silver medal in the EP 10,000m at the 2010 Guangzhou Games and took second place in the 20,000m at the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Games.
Choi Kwang-ho, who does not discriminate between short and long distances, is aiming for a gold medal in the 1,000m this time.
Jeong Cheol-won crossed the finish line first in the 1,000m event at last year’s World Championships, but was disqualified due to an unfortunate foul call.
Jeong Cheol-won also recorded 1 minute 24.274 seconds in the first round of selection for the Asian Games national team, beating Choi Gwang-ho (1 minute 24.333 seconds) to become a member of the national team.
The two athletes compete in good faith in the individual competition, but join hands in the 5,000m relay to win the gold medal together.
Since both of them are not young, they are waiting for the day when they can get to the starting line with the determination that this could be their last Asian Games.
The speed team is aiming for a total of three gold medals, including the women’s 5,000m relay.
National team coach Kim Jeong-soon said, “(Our biggest competitor) Chinese Taipei started joint training early, so they are better prepared and can take the lead in endurance,” but added, “We are better at using the course and have a better sense of positioning, so we are able to demonstrate that well.” “If you do that, you have a good chance of winning,” he analyzed.
Coach Kim compared the two, saying, “Choi Kwang-ho is a quiet and quiet player who works hard, while Jeong Cheol-won is a player with strong confidence and positive thinking.”
Jeong Cheol-won said, “I respect Choi Gwang-ho because he is an active player who has set a great record of advancing to the Asian Games three times in a row. We are competing in good faith and preparing hard with the mindset that ‘we can both do well’.” .