Kim had arrived in Russia for the February Games as the hot
favorite to successfully defend the title, but despite completing a
faultless final routine she was left with only a silver as home
favorite Adelina Sotnikova took a shock gold.
The Russian teenager was the only one of the leading trio whose free
program contained an obvious mistake — a two-footed landing from a
double loop — but as far as the nine-member judging panel were
concerned, she was superior to the more graceful Kim.
Despite the error, Sotnikova improved on her own personal best by
more than 18 points and her mark of 149.95 was just 0.11 of a point
shy of Kim's world record free skate score of 150.06 — which the
South Korean earned for a blinding performance at the 2010 Vancouver
Defenders of Sotnikova pointed out that the Russian teenager
performed one more triple than Kim.
The KOC and the Korea Skating Union (KSU) said in statement that
they will demand a thorough investigation into the composition of
the judging panel.
"We had to be very careful since an appeal or a complaint could
strain relationships with international judges and bring
disadvantages to our players in international games," a KOC official
"However, we decided to file complaints to the disciplinary
committee, considering what is the best for our nation (people)
although some issues are expected."
[to top of second column]
The result drew derision from outside of Russia, who celebrated
their first victory in the women's event, with more than 1.5 million
people signing an online petition demanding an inquiry into Kim's
One judge was identified as having served a one-year suspension for
trying to fix an event at the 1998 Olympics, while another, Alla
Shekhovtseva — the wife of the general director of the Russian
figure skating federation — was caught on camera hugging Sotnikova
moments after the win.
(Additional reporting by Sohee Kim; writing by Patrick Johnston;
editing by Ed Osmond)
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