The Special Olympic Qualification Classifications (SOQC) will be based upon the best three results out of four results over the respective distance achieved at the designated four World Cups.
The first World Cup will be held in Budapest, Hungary on September 30 and October 1st with OWIA speed skaters Deanna Lockett in the women’s and Pierre Boda, Alex Bryant and Andy Jung competing in the men’s events over 500m, 1000m and 1500m.
“Qualification for the Games require the top 32 for in the 500metres and 1000m plus the top 36 for 1500 over the four World Cups. We’re aiming higher to comfortably achieve Olympic qualification for PyeongChang,” said Nic Cicero, who is part of the Australian short track coaching team. [AB1]
For PyeongChang, 55 quota places are available for men and the same again for women, with an additional five places offered to the host nation (Republic of Korea).
Each nation is limited to a maximum of three entrants per individual event.
Whilst Australia will compete in the Men’s relay, a quota place in the world top-eight teams is not expected.
“Australia will be aiming for a maximum of three entrants per individual event in the men. Deanna Lockett is aiming to qualify across all three distances and has based her training in Korea for the past few seasons,” Cicero explained.[AB2]
After the Budapest World Cup, the short trackers head to the second qualifier at Dordrecht in the Netherlands on October 7-8 before a month-long competitive break ahead of the Shanghai World Cup in China on November 9-10.
The final World Cup will be held in Seoul November 18-19, after which the ISU will inform the National Olympic Committees of their allocated quota places.
Australia’s PyeongChang hopefuls, including Sochi Olympian Pierre Boda, will race in the World Cup Trials in Sydney on Wednesday 26 and Thursday 27 July at Canterbury Ice Rink.