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IOC demands short-track report

Short-track speed skating, part sport and part circus, has been a medal sport only two years, but two nights of stripped medals, protests and veiled threats have the International Olympic Committee wondering whether it belongs in the Olympics.

IOC president Juan Antonio Samaranch called Friday for a report on a series of incidents:

China filed a protest, saying American Cathy Turner interfered with Zhang Yanmei to win the 500-meter final Thursday. Zhang stormed off the medals stand.

Canadian Nathalie Lambert called Turner "the dirtiest skater in short track." Lambert was eliminated in qualifying after colliding with Turner. "I hope she gets what she deserves," Lambert said. "Something bad."

China was stripped of the silver medal in the women's 3,000-meter relay because judges saw skater Yang Yang linger on the ice to interfere with a U.S. racer. America got the bronze despite finishing fourth.

Britain's Nicholas Gooch and Canada's Derrick Campbell were disqualified in the 500-meter final, so the bronze went to Canada's Marc Gagnon, who did not skate in the medals final.

Turner and Britain's Wilf O'Reilly both said they were forced by officials to race with skates damaged in collisions, risking injuries.

Samaranch also asked for details of the semifinal heat in which Turner, Lambert and Japan's Ayako Tsubaki fell but were allowed to re-skate. Lambert tumbled during the re-skate and was eliminated.

The United States _ with three short-track medals _ could pick up more today from Andy Gabel, a favorite in the men's 500-meter individual final, and Turner in the women's 1,000 meters.

Mongolian goes home

Mongolia's one-man team will make the long journey home with 48.63 seconds of memories. Bat-Orgil Batchuluun finished four seconds behind the other two skaters in his short-track speed skating 500-meter heat and was eliminated Thursday, but not without a loud ovation when his time was announced as a national record.

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