Korean athletes who are competing in the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics gathered together on Wednesday to mark the 100-day countdown to the games. The focus was naturally on figure skating star Kim Yu-na.
Kim said she is recovering from her injury and gearing up for the Olympics. "I feel a lot better, so I am practicing triple jumps. I think I'm about 70 percent fit overall," said Kim, who suffered a slight injury to her metatarsal on her right foot last month.
Kim withdrew from two events of the International Skating Union Grand Prix Series of the 2013-14 season during treatment and rehabilitation.
Competition experience is important in the run-up to the Olympics in order to get feedback for new programs and fine-tune them. Kim plans to compete in a second-tier competition in December. Possible candidates are the NRW Trophy in Dortmund, Germany, the Golden Spin of Zagreb in Croatia, and the Ukrainian Open in Kiev.
Kim's new short program is "Send in the Clowns" and the free skate "Adiós Nonino."
"The free skate requires a great deal of stamina as the tempo is very fast," she said. "My goal is to train hard so that I can perform flawlessly at the Olympics."
Other Korean athletes expected to shine in Sochi are speed skaters Lee Sang-hwa, Lee Seung-hoon, and Mo Tae-bum.
Lee Sang-hwa, the defending Olympic champion in women's 500-m speed skating, said, "I'm under a lot of pressure because I'm in the position to defend" the title. "I believe I'll be able to replicate good results if I calmly prepare for the Olympics as I did last season."
Lee is firmly at the top of her field, having set a new world record last season and winning the world championships. "Compared to Vancouver, I lost about 5 kg in weight, so I feel much lighter."
Mo Tae-bum, who won a gold medal in the 500-m speed skating and a silver in the 1,000-m, said, "I'd like to be the first Korean to win the 1,000-m at the Olympics."
Lee Seung-hoon, who won gold in the men's 10,000-m and a silver in 5,000-m race in Vancouver, said, "I will do my best to win a medal in the group races as well as individual ones."