Print the Biography/Short

Liam O'Brien


SportShort Track
Born19 Nov 1998 in Sydney 
ResidenceSeongnam, KOR
OccupationAthlete, Student
LanguagesEnglish, French, Italian, Korean, Spanish
Higher educationLanguage Studies - Dankook University: Yongin, KOR
Personal Bests
Personal Bests
  Event RecordDateLocation 
    500m 43.776 06 Oct 2018 Melbourne  
    1000m 1:29.533 04 Feb 2017 Dresden  
    1500m 2:15.993 02 Feb 2019 Dresden  
    3000m 5:16.730 31 Aug 2013 Melbourne  
Social Media
Social Media  
Sport Specific Information
Sport Specific Information
Training RegimeHe trains in Seongnam, Republic of Korea.  
Name of coachLee Kwang-Soo [personal], KOR  
Reason for choosing this sportHis sister Danielle was a figure skater, and he followed her into the sport before switching to speed skating. "From the first time I tried speed skating, I knew this was for me. It was just so fast, so thrilling. It was just a lot more exciting. I just love going fast and trying to improve every time I step onto the ice."  
When and where did you begin this sport?He began skating at age six in Sydney, NSW, Australia.  
General Interest
General Interest
Famous relativesHis sister Danielle has represented Australia in figure skating. She and Greg Merriman were ranked 20th in ice dance at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi. (SportsDeskOnline, 28 Nov 2016;, 23 Jul 2014)  
AmbitionsTo compete at the 2022 Olympic Winter Games in Beijing. (, 21 Feb 2021)  
Sporting philosophy / motto"We're not here to take part. We're here to take over." [Conor McGregor] (, 01 Sep 2019)  
Hero / IdolRussian short track skater Victor An. (, 01 Sep 2019)  
Other informationTRAINING IN KOREA
In December 2019 he moved to Busan, Republic of Korea, following a number of shorter spells training in the country, before moving to Seongnam in April 2020. "Short track is so big in Korea that at almost every training centre, there are athletes good enough to go to the Olympics. And only three will get the nod in any discipline. For every three skaters that are selected to go to the worlds or Olympics for Korea, there are probably another 100 who are just as good. Someone who wins gold one year could miss out on the team the next. So when you are in that environment with that huge pool of talent, it is only going to bring you on and improve you as a skater. That's why Korea has always been the go-to place." (, 21 Feb 2021; ISU Short Track Facebook page, 11 Apr 2021)

He was born in Sydney, NSW, Australia, to Irish parents. He made his international short track debut for Ireland at the 2021 European Championships in Gdansk, Poland, having previously represented Australia in the sport. "It was something that my mum and dad had always talked about, getting us to represent Ireland. Initially, speed skating wasn't part of the federation, but when dad ran into Karen [O'Sullivan, president of the Ice Skating Association of Ireland] in Sydney, she said there were plans to do that. When the opportunity came to represent Ireland, I took it straight away. My parents are so honoured by the fact that I am out there, representing Ireland. Mum has said that she can sleep easily at night now." (, 27 Feb 2021;, 21 Feb 2021; SportsDeskOnline, 01 Feb 2021;, 21 Jan 2021, 15 Dec 2020)

In 2017 he began studying for a degree in actuarial studies and commerce at the University of New South Wales in Sydney, NSW, Australia. He left the course in 2019 to begin training in the Republic of Korea and in 2020 began studying Korean language at Dankook University in Yongin, Republic of Korea. (LinkedIn profile, 01 Jun 2021; ISU Short Track Facebook page, 11 Apr 2021)
Championships results
Year Competition Event Rank  
Championships results
    2017/2018 World Junior Championships 3000m Relay6  
    2016/2017 World Junior Championships 3000m Relay9  
    2020/2021 European Championships 1500m23  
    2020/2021 World Championships 1500m25  
    2020/2021 European Championships Overall25  
    2021/2022 World Championships 1500m27  
    2020/2021 European Championships 500m27  
    2020/2021 European Championships 1000m28  
    2017/2018 World Junior Championships Overall29  
    2020/2021 World Championships Overall29  
    2021/2022 World Championships 500m31  
    2020/2021 World Championships 500m32  
    2020/2021 World Championships 1000m33  
    2016/2017 World Junior Championships Overall72  
World Cups
Year Competition Event Rank  
World Cups
    2015/2016 Dresden 5000m Relay14  
    2016/2017 Dresden 5000m Relay16  
    2018/2019 Dresden 1500m25  
    2016/2017 Dresden 1500m38  
    2015/2016 Dresden 500m41  
    2021/2022 World Cup 1500m43  
    2015/2016 Dresden 1500m43  
    2018/2019 Dresden 1000m44  
    2016/2017 Dresden 1000m45  
    2021/2022 World Cup 1000m57  
    2018/2019 World Cup 1500m64  
    2021/2022 World Cup 500m66  
    2017/2018 World Cup 1000m67  
    2017/2018 World Cup 1500m111  
    2015/2016 World Cup 500m119  
    2018/2019 World Cup 500m121  
    2016/2017 World Cup 1500m123  
    2015/2016 World Cup 1500m129  
    2018/2019 World Cup 1000m136  
    2016/2017 World Cup 1000m156