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Published: Saturday, 2/27/2010

Ohno bounces back

ASSOCIATED PRESS
Canada's Francois-Louis Tremblay, left, reacts after winning the 5000-meter relay ahead of South Korea's Kwak Yoon-gy, second from left, and the United States' Apolo Anton Ohno, center. Canada's Francois-Louis Tremblay, left, reacts after winning the 5000-meter relay ahead of South Korea's Kwak Yoon-gy, second from left, and the United States' Apolo Anton Ohno, center.
AMY SANCETTA / AP Enlarge

VANCOUVER - Apolo Anton Ohno anchored the United States to a bronze-medal finish in the 5,000-meter short track speedskating relay, earning his eighth career Olympic medal.

Earlier yesterday, the American was disqualified in the 500 final, apparently for causing a crash in the final turn.

Ohno claimed his third medal of the Vancouver Games, to go with a silver and another bronze that made him America's most decorated Winter Olympian.

Ohno stuck out his left skate but was edged by South Korea's Kwak Yoon-gy at the finish line of the 45-lap relay. Canada won the gold and South Korea earned the silver.

In addition yesterday, China's Wang Meng won her third gold medal at the Olympic short track. Canada's Charles Hamelin got his first, then quickly made it two.

Wang will go down as the biggest short track star of the Vancouver Games, besting teammate Zhou Yang for that honor. Both had two golds apiece going into the final women's event, the 1,000 meters, but Zhou was disqualified for a daring move with three laps to go.

Katherine Reutter gave the Americans something to cheer about after Ohno was disqualified in the 500 final, finishing just behind Wang to claim silver. South Korea's Park Seung-hi earned the bronze.

Hamelin came into the Vancouver Games as Canada's best hope for short track glory, but he had only finished fourth in the 1,000 and seventh in the 1,500.

Hamelin finally came through last night. He slipped by South Korea's Sung Si-bak coming off the final turn, then held on when Sung lost an edge and crashed into the padded boards.

Right behind them, Ohno was trying to get inside Canada's Francois-Louis Tremblay, but wound up knocking him into the boards - a move that got the American disqualified, denying him a third individual medal at these games.

Sung slid across the line and wound up with the silver. Tremblay got up to finish and received a bronze for his effort.

Coming back for the 5,000 relay, Ohno teamed with J.R. Celski, Travis Jayner, and Jordan Malone to extend his own record for most decorated short track skater and U.S. Winter Olympian.

Hamelin joined with his little brother Francois, Olivier Jean, and Francois-Louis Tremblay to give the Canadians their second gold, sending the crowd at Pacific Coliseum into a frenzy.

"The Night Train" is halfway to a golden destination.

Driver Steve Holcomb slid USA-1, the baddest-looking bobsled designed with NASCAR technology and powered by American muscle, into the lead after the first two runs of the Olympic four-man competition. This is a race the United States hasn't won since 1948.

Holcomb and his crew of Justin Olsen, Steve Mesler, and Curt Tomasevicz are two trips from ending 62 years of icy failures.

Setting track records on both runs, Holcomb completed his two descents down the frighteningly fast Whistler Sliding Center course in 1 minute, 41.75 seconds - 0.40 seconds ahead of Canada's Lyndon Rush and 0.44 better than Germany's Andre Lange, the most decorated driver in Olympic history.

Norway's 36-year-old Ole Einar Bjoerndalen added to his tremendous Olympics resume by anchoring Norway's victory in the men's biathlon relay. This was his first gold medal since sweeping all four events in 2002, and the 11th medal of his career. That leaves him one behind Bjorn Daehlie's Winter Games record of 12.

He nailed all 10 of his targets, then skied across the finish waving a flag and flashing a big smile.

Canada was denied another gold medal on home ice, getting taken down by a Swedish team that captured its second consecutive gold medal in women's curling.

In extra ends, no less!

China, competing in its first Olympics, beat Switzerland for the bronze.

With rain turning the event into hydroplaning, Nicolien Sauerbreij of the Netherlands won the women's parallel giant slalom race.

Rider after top rider kept going out, unable to handle the strange conditions. About the only one who handled them consistently was Sauerbreij, who was her country's flagbearer in 2002, but finished 24th.



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