VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- The day that was likely
Ohno's up-and-down night began with a jump that would have made figure skaters proud. In the 500-meter quarterfinals, Ohno was stalking the skaters in front of them with three laps to go when two of them,
Ohno then won his semifinal, a race that eliminated two Korean rivals,
By the time he reached the 500 final, Ohno said he felt the accumulation of races in his legs. "In our sport, we compete from the very beginning to the end and the body gets fatigued," he said. "When I woke up this morning, I felt pretty good. When I got to the rink, I felt pretty good. When the gun went off, I felt like I started a nuclear reactor, I was so slow."
Still, Ohno put himself in position to reach another podium. On the final lap, he tried to cut inside Canada's
"I was fourth the whole way and there was no space to move up," Ohno said. "I kept waiting and waiting and, on the last corner, I ran up on the Canadian guy. I put my hand up so I wouldn't run into him. There was just no space to move up ... You know, it's the head Canadian referee out there and there were two Canadians in the race."
Later in the evening, Ohno returned with his relay team of
This time, Ohno took a push from Celski with his team in fourth place and swung past his Chinese foe on the last lap. The Canadians celebrated with gold. Charles Hamelin won his second of the evening, with his brother
"We changed our relay order at the last minute," Ohno said. "Usually Travis pushes me at the end, but the ice was getting pretty chippy at the end and fatigue was setting in with us. We made a strategic adjustment and it may have helped us pick up a medal."
The team medal was especially sweet for Celski, the 19-year-old teammate who converted to short track from in-line skating after watching Ohno at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. ""If that's his last one, it's an honor to go out and share this with him," Celski said. "As much as I'm excited for myself, I'm also jumping for joy for Apolo that gets to go out with another medal and another record. Every night, it seems like the guy changes the record books."