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Dublin: 6 °C Friday 14 December, 2018

Heartbreak as GB star Elise Christie crashes out in dramatic speed skating final

500m gold went to Italy’s Arianna Fontana, the runner-up in Sochi four years ago.

PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games - Day Four Source: Mike Egerton

SPEED SKATING WORLD champion Elise Christie suffered Olympic heartbreak once again as she crashed out of her first medal race, the 500m, in a final filled with drama.

A devastated Christie was left empty-handed four years ago after she was disqualified and stripped of her 500m silver medal following a judges’ review.

But, after winning three gold medals at last year’s world championships, she arrived in Pyeongchang as one of Team GB’s leading hopes and lived up to that billing, twice setting a new Olympic record in Tuesday morning’s qualification rounds.

But her dream of Olympic redemption slipped away after a slow start in the final saw her fighting to make up lost ground and, ultimately, crash as she tried to reel in the race leaders on the last lap.

Source: Safeen Ali/YouTube

Gold went to Italy’s Arianna Fontana, the 500m runner-up in Sochi while, in another dramatic twist, South Korea’s Choi Min-jeong was sensationally disqualified after crossing the line in second.

Yara van Kerkhof of the Netherlands was promoted to second place and silver, while bronze went to Canada’s Kim Boutin.

Christie, who picked herself up off the ice to finish, was fourth, more than 30 seconds behind the medallists.

“I was knocked over,” she told the BBC. “I did not fall on my own.

She added: “It is so tough. I have worked so hard for the 500m. It has been taken away from me.”

Christie, 27, also competes in both the 1,000m and 1,5000m.

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