SOCHI — South Korea's star speed skater Lee Sang-Hwa retained her Olympic title in the women's 500 meters in Sochi on Tuesday, scorching around the Adler Arena track to set a new Olympic record while Russia's Olga Fatkulina claimed the silver on home ice.
Lee, 24, had a 0.15 second lead after race one and pressed home that advantage to clock a combined 74:70 seconds over two runs. The 37.28 seconds clocked on her second run is an Olympic record.
Fatkulina massively improved on 20th place in Canada four years ago to clinched silver with an aggregate 75.06.
Dutch skater Margot Boer claimed bronze with 75.48.
Lee was the overwhelming favorite after winning all seven World Cup races that she has entered this season and breaking her own world record three times along the way. She also won world championship gold at the Adler Arena last year.
It is also the first time a Sochi speed skating gold medal has not been claimed by the Netherlands, after Dutch podium sweeps in the men's 500 meters and the 5,000 meters, and Ireen Wust winning the women's 3,000 meters.