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Bobsleigh pilot confident of strong PyeongChang 2018 performance

All Headlines 19:22 January 24, 2018

SEOUL, Jan. 24 (Yonhap) -- South Korean bobsleigh pilot Won Yun-jong said Wednesday he feels confident that he can achieve good results at the upcoming Winter Olympics.

Won will partner with brakeman Seo Young-woo to compete in the two-man bobsleigh event at the PyeongChang Olympic Games next month. The tandem is considered one the medal hopes for South Korea in sliding sports.

"I've prepared for the PyeongChang Olympics for about eight years and it's just around the corner," Won said after the South Korean national team launch event in Seoul. "There were difficult times, but with our hard work, we'll do our best to achieve what we wanted."

Won and Seo, the duo that topped the 2015-16 season world rankings, competed in only three of the eight International Bobsleigh & Skeleton Federation (IBSF) World Cups this season. Since their results at the World Cup weren't impressive, the pair decided to have more training on the Olympic track to get a better understanding of curves and turns on the course.

"Every track has different course settings, so we need some time to understand its characteristics," he said. "I think we've trained long enough in PyeongChang and have a good grip on the track."

Won's team recently decided to use a Latvian-made sled instead of the domestic sled that was manufactured by Hyundai Motor Co., South Korea's largest automaker. The tandem used Latvia's BTC sled during the 2015-16 season, when they claimed two golds and three silvers at the IBSF World Cups.

"It was a difficult decision," he said. "There was no big difference in terms of performance, but we decided to go with the sled that we can have a stable run with."

Won and Seo will have their second Olympic appearance in PyeongChang, 180 kilometers east of Seoul. Four years ago, they finished 18th in Sochi, Russia.

"We're on the very last stage of our Olympic preparation," he said. "With fans' support, we'll deliver good results."

South Korean bobsleigh pilot Won Yun-jong speaks to reporters at the national team launch ceremony for the PyeongChang Olympic Games in Seoul on Jan. 24, 2018. (Yonhap)

kdon@yna.co.kr
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