J.R. Celski claimed bronze in the short track speedskating 1,000-meter Saturday in Dresden, Germany, to earn his first individual world cup podium in more than three years.
A three-time Olympic medalist, Celski finished in 1:27.916, 2.603 seconds behind gold medalist Thibaut Fauconnet of France. Korea’s Dae Heon Hwang was second, just 0.019 behind Fauconnet. The bronze is Celski’s second of the season after helping Team USA to the 5,000-meter relay bronze at December’s Olympic test event in Gangneung, Korea.
“It feels good to be back in the mix,” the two-time Olympian told US Speedskating afterward. “Overall, I’m really happy with the way the day went. I remain confident that the work we are putting in as a team is pushing us in the right direction and that the results will continue to improve.”
Celski picks up his first individual world cup medal since November 2013, when he collected gold in the 1,500-meter and bronze at 1,000 meters in Kolomna, Russia. His most recent individual podiums were at the 2014 world championships, where he won the 3,000-meter gold (not an Olympic event) and added silver at 500 meters to earn the overall silver medal in Montreal, where he also was part of the silver-medal-winning 5,000-meter team relay.
Saturday’s performance boosts his career total to 23 world cup medals, 15 from individual races.