Last hurrahs, returns to form and Olympic debuts, there was something for everyone on Friday at the Beijing Games, where a snowboard legend bid the sport goodbye, the spectre of Russian doping reared its ugly head once again and China won a first sliding medal in the skeleton. Sidney Chu’s first appearance at a Games was over in a flash, and unfortunately the 44.857 seconds it took him to complete his short-track speedskating 500m heat was not nearly fast enough. The Hongkonger’s time in the eighth race of the evening was some four seconds behind defending gold medallist Wu Dajing and Italy’s Pietro Sighel. Chu was up against it from the start and never looked like keeping pace with the trio in front of him, and his position at the end came courtesy of the Netherlands’ Dylan Hoogerwerf, who spun out as the race reached its conclusion. Afterwards, Chu said just competing alongside Wu was “already an incredible achievement”. “Although I didn’t break my personal best or perform to my ultimate abilities, I’m still very satisfied,” he said. Wu, as expected, eased into Sunday’s final rounds, as did Chinese teammates Ren Ziwei and Sun Long. The trio then joined Li Wenlong to qualify for the final of the men’s 5,000m relay on Wednesday. The host nation’s interest in the women’s 1,000m short-track speedskating, meanwhile, was over early, with Zhang Chutong, Han Yutong and Qu Chunyu all failing to make it through the quarter-finals. Han and Qu finished fourth and fifth in a race in which Suzanne Schulting set a new world record of 1:26.514, and the Dutch skater went on to win the gold, followed by South Korea’s Choi Min-jeong, and Belgium’s Hanne Desmet. If China are to reach the 13 medals and 6 golds they have been predicted to win, then speedskating, and Eileen Gu, will play a large part in that. But there have been hopes for success in skeleton too, and the controversial move to select Yan Wengang instead of Geng Wenqiang has paid immediate dividends. Selectors always said Yan’s greater experience on his home track was the difference, and so it proved, taking bronze on the final run after starting the heat in fourth. Germany took gold and silver, through Christopher Grotheer and Axel Jungk. Friday was a strange day, with moments of high emotion interspersed with periods of relative calm, but there was nothing low key about the first medal event, where snowboarders said a highly charged farewell to a man who has been the face of the sport since he won his first gold medal in Turin in 2006. For the better part of a decade and more Shaun White has dominated the half-pipe, be that at the Games, or away from it. On Friday his career came to end, not with a medal to add to three golds he already has as many hoped, but in fourth as a new generation took charge. Japan’s Ayumu Hirano took gold in front of Australia’s Scotty James and Switzerland’s Jan Scherrer. “It’s done and I’m so relieved,” White said. “I always want more as a competitor, but I’m proud. I’m leaving behind a lifetime and a career in this sport and a legacy.” Mikaela Shiffrin’s legacy meanwhile is yet to be determined, but the American skier at least returned to some semblance of normalcy on Friday in the super-G, completing a run having failed to finish in her first two events. Although she finished well out of the medal places in ninth, just getting to the bottom of the run unscathed represented something of an improvement on the past few days. While the American was settling for finishing, Lara Gut-Behrami was becoming the first Swiss athlete, man or woman, to win gold in the event. The Olympics would not be the Olympics without a doping scandal, and as so often has been the case in the recent past, Russia are at the centre of the latest one. Officials confirmed what everyone already knew, that 15-year-old Kamila Valieva failed a drugs test. The figure skater’s right to compete in the women’s event at the Beijing Winter Olympics will be decided at an urgent hearing at the Court of Arbitration for Sport. The International Testing Agency said on Friday it would lead an appeal on behalf of the IOC against a decision by Russia’s anti-doping agency to lift a provisional ban – which Russian officials had imposed on Tuesday.